Cristina Steele-Kaplan is passionate about helping families. Born in Rota, Spain, Cristina grew up in St. Louis, Mo., and attended High Point University, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in English. She obtained her juris doctorate from North Carolina Central University (NCCU) School of Law. While at NCCU, Cristina was a member of the Hispanic Law Student Association and received a VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) award for her participation in the school’s free clinic to assist low-income families with their federal and state taxes. During law school, Cristina also clerked for a city councilman and state banking commissioner in Greensboro, N.C., which she continued to do after graduation. As a law clerk, she handled collections, criminal defense, and contract disputes.
Civil Service with NASA
Cristina expanded her practice into federal law after being hired by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) at Stennis Space Center in southern Mississippi. After Hurricane Katrina hit the area, NASA’s mission changed from one of discovery to recovery, and Cristina joined NASA’s employee assistance program. As a volunteer, she assisted the numerous employees displaced by the hurricane in obtaining help from insurance companies, contractors, and relief agencies. The work Cristina did in this vital program left a lasting impression on her. For her service, she received a letter of commendation from the chief medical officer of NASA.
A Calling in Immigration Law
After deciding that helping people was where she wanted to be, Cristina left NASA to pursue immigration law, launching Steele-Kaplan Law Services. She is licensed to practice immigration law in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. She is a member of the North Carolina State Bar, the District of Columbia Bar Association, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), through its Denver chapter. She is a regular volunteer at Greeley Legal Nights where she provides free immigration advice. She works with Colorado State University as an advisor to their students with immigration questions. Cristina is fluent in Spanish.