Attorney Biography

Melissa A. Gawelek graduated from Cleveland-Marshall College of Law in 2013 with a concentration in International and Comparative Law. Focusing her curriculum on immigration law, she participated in many hands-on learning opportunities during school. One of her favorite experiences was studying international human rights in Strasbourg, France where she was inspired by visits to the Council of Europe and the European Court of Human Rights. During her second year of law school, she externed for Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, where she gained a behind-the-scenes look at removal proceedings.  As a third year student, she worked as student associate for the school’s civil litigation clinic where she worked with clients in various legal matters, including a complex appeal of a detained asylum seeker’s removal order. For her volunteer work during law school she was awarded the Pro Bono and Community Service award in 2013.

Attorney Gawelek truly enjoys the challenging and changing nature of immigration law. She has helped refugees and immigrants from many different nations file hundreds of applications and petitions. Among her many interests, Mrs. Gawelek is greatly interested in refugee issues and human trafficking cessation. A compassionate advocate, Attorney Gawelek has participated in relief work in many developing nations. She has additional training in Critical Incident Stress Management and Disaster Response, tools which aid her in compassionately representing clients who may have survived torture, domestic violence, or displacement. Her current and former clients have appreciated her down-to-earth approach, her warmth, and ability to connect on a human level.

Attorney Gawelek is licensed by the Ohio Supreme Court and can practice immigration law in all fifty states. She is a proud member of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, the Akron Bar Association, the West Shore Bar Association, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association. She assists several local non-profits with pro or low-bono representation for needy clients, and she sits on the Board of the Cleveland Marshall College of Law Alumni Association.

Attorney Gawelek lives in Parma, Ohio with her husband and two adopted pugs. She enjoys traveling, music, and adventures in the great outdoors.

Read more about why she loves what she gets to do for a living, here.


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