Arwa Zakir Kakavand

Senior Staff Attorney, Training & Technical Assistance
Arwa Zakir Kakavand Headshot

Pronouns: she/her

Arwa’s work focuses on CGRS’s training and technical assistant programs, including trainings, resource development, and providing technical assistance support and mentorship in the representation of asylum seekers.

Prior to joining CGRS, Arwa worked at Casa Cornelia Law Center, where she managed the Litigation Program; mentored and trained pro bono attorneys; and handled a caseload of defensive and affirmative asylum cases and appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals. She was also an associate at a class action settlement firm in New York, and a women and migration rights fellow at the International Federation for Human Rights in Paris, France.

Languages: Fluent in Hindi, Urdu, Gujarati; Proficient in French and Arabic


Seton Hall University School of Law, J.D.
International Human Rights/Rule of Law Scholar, Center for Social Justice
Articles Editor, Seton Hall Circuit Review

Saint John’s University, B.A., magna cum laude

Admitted to practice law in California, New York, and New Jersey

Service to the Community

  • Vice President, South Asian Bar Association (San Diego)
  • Co-Chair, San Diego Lawyer’s Club Life and Law/Parenting Committee
  • Co-Chair, AILA San Diego, Asylum Committee
  • Trauma-Informed Yoga and Meditation Guide

Selected Publications and Commentary

Africa for Women’s Rights Ratify and Respect Campaign, Int’l Fed’n for Human Rights, Legal Guide on Utilizing International and Regional Recourse Mechanisms to Enforce Women’s Rights in Africa, Int't Fed'n for Human Rights (2013)

Africa for Women’s Rights Ratify and Respect Campaign, Int’l Fed’n for Human Rights, Dossier of Claims: Africa, Int'l Fed'n for Human Rights (2010)