Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram

EB1- Maritime Executive – Raj

EB1 Green Card - Rajnish Kelkar - Maritime Executive

EB1 Green Card – Raj – Maritime Executive

Raj is a Marine Executive that has traveled all over the world and has worked with some of the best global organizations in the Maritime and the Oil and Gas industries. For more than a decade in the US on a working visa, he knew it was time for him to secure the future of his family.

Raj has a high-value career that is critical to the success of the gas industry and the U.S. economy. With his impressive career and the help of our firm, we are pleased to help him secure an EB1 Green Card!

If you, too, need to secure your family’s future in the United States – give us a call today!

Tell me about where you are from and a little bit about what you do.

I was born and raised in India. I am a Marine Engineer and my initial career and work took me all over the world on board large oceangoing tankers carrying crude oil, petroleum products and liquid natural gas (LNG). I finally settled into a corporate career in the parent company in Canada and became a Canadian citizen. In Canada, I worked in various technical, operational and managerial roles in developing and enhancing organizational capabilities in improving and optimizing fleet performance, ship efficiencies, reducing emissions, increasing safety & reliability and reducing risk. In my Maritime career, I had the opportunity to live and work in many exciting places such as Singapore, Korea, Japan, Norway, India and eventually in Canada and the United States.

Raj is managing the LNG Carrier Ships

Raj manages LNG Carrier Ships

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How did you work your way up the ranks to reach your level and what were some of the challenges along the way?

Raj presenting the Gold Hard Hat Award

Raj presenting the Gold Hard Hat Award

I had the privilege to work for some of the best global organizations in Shipping and Maritime and in the Oil and Gas industries and to work alongside some of the most talented people in the industry. This gave me the opportunity to lead and manage many critical projects in each role. This also meant that I had to relocate numerous times. This was challenging to do with a family, but I took on these challenges and this benefited the organizations and my career tremendously. These opportunities helped me grow my network and brought me in contact with many people who have recognized my potential and encouraged my career growth. This helped me form a strong professional reputation, which in turn helped me during my process of getting letters of support and recommendations.

Have you ever lived in the US before? If so, under what circumstances? If not, what aroused your interest in a move to the US?

I had visited the US numerous times in my early career and was very fascinated by the country but never had an opportunity to move to the US back then. In 2009, I moved to the US due to an exciting job opportunity and career progression. I joined an Oil and Gas major to manage the Safety, Environment, and Risk for one of the largest LNG Carrier fleets. The experience gained there was instrumental in me landing a leading Maritime role for the development of a new LNG export terminal in the US. I have been in the US now for about 10 years on an H1-B visa.

Raj speaking at the Annual BG HSSE and Technical Forum

Raj speaking at the Annual BG HSSE and Technical Forum

How did you decide to pursue an EB1?

When I initially moved to the US, I had no idea of how cumbersome and long the US immigration process was and that it is based on a very outdated per country quota system determined not on one’s skills (like elsewhere e.g. Australia or Canada) but one’s country of birth!

Although my US employer had applied for my green card which was approved under the EB-2 category, I was facing a very long wait time due to the country quota backlogs. Due to this delay, my daughter aged out and now my son too was about to turn 21 and age out. It would have been extremely unfair for my second child to also age out and miss his green card especially since he had been in the US half his life and gone through the US education system!

When I decided to explore the EB-1 category, my company’s immigration lawyer did not encourage it. Not only that, the EB-1 requirements sounded very daunting to me too. I was introduced and referred to Chris Ingram by another attorney and on reading and reviewing my resume and experience, he immediately agreed to help me to file my application in the EB-1 category.

Raj, one of the presenters, at the Marine Assurance Workshop

Raj, one of the presenters, at the Marine Assurance Workshop

What was your experience with the EB1 petition process?

It was stressful yet in many ways it was fun. I think that the last months that I spent in the application process was the busiest and stressful, but at the same time very rewarding. This process helped me realize and appreciate how my life, my career in the US, Canada and India with my various achievements and accomplishments professionally and academically had made me an expert in my area and I was able to showcase my career and achievements in a way that I would never have done otherwise. It has made me understand how important and critical every step of my career was.

What were some of the challenges you had to work on in the preparation of your case, for example, evidence gathering?

I had to scour through my old files and archives to hunt for evidence in the form of letters, pictures, reports, papers and proof to build up my case and obtain letters, etc. To build 3 solid categories within months while continuing with my regular day job was quite challenging. This was even more so, especially because my career and work spanned different countries and various companies. I think one of the advantages I had was that I had a decade of my most recent work experience and achievements right here in the US.

What kind of relationship did/do you have with Chris and his team?

Chris and his team were extremely helpful and encouraging. The associate working directly with me was Judith Mursalin, and I cannot thank her enough for all the encouragement she gave me each time I talked to her. Each phone call with Judith made me more confident that I was on the right path. Judith helped me by sending me regular email updates, giving me tips and encouraged me throughout the hectic process. Judith was very prompt, clear and specific with her guidance and recommendations. I was naturally tense and apprehensive about the strength of my case, but Judith always reassured me and gave me the confidence that my case was indeed strong and solid. That proved to be true because my petition was approved in record time without any RFEs.

What were you doing when you found out you were approved? What was your immediate reaction? How did/will you celebrate?

I was at work when I got the email informing me that my petition was approved. I was overjoyed and felt a sense of accomplishment. I immediately called and gave the good news to my wife who was at home. She asked me to break the news to my children myself, which I did on my return home that evening. My wife had planned my favorite BBQ dinner which we enjoyed after I shared the news with the children. My son, who was at the cusp of aging out was tremendously relieved. After the whole process is finished, we will have a long-deserved vacation.

What are you looking forward to most about moving to the US?

Since my family and I are already living in the US, it is not a major change from that perspective other than a sense of permanency in the US and flexibility and options that a Green Card brings. For my son, it is a major benefit because he now will have the flexibility to be able to study or work or pursue other opportunities in the US as a college student and a young adult which wasn’t possible before.

What will you miss the most about your home country?

For us, both Canada and India are home too, but we have been in the US now for so long that the US now feels like home. I miss my friends, colleagues and the natural beauty of Canada and I miss my family in India, but we visit both countries regularly to stay in touch. The US will be my home now, and Judith and everyone with Chris Ingram have made it possible.

What advice would you give to any immigrant considering an EB1 or who is already in the process?

For those considering EB-1, I would say review your CV with Chris Ingram’s team and if you feel you have unique achievements, go for it and apply in the EB1 category. For those in the process, make sure that you have as much evidence as possible for all the details that are mentioned in your CV and in the petition. This will ensure that you avoid any RFEs. I was able to meet 4 categories but decided to go with my strongest 3. The final merits/summations part is crucial, and your 3 or more categories must clearly come together to show how you and all your expertise will finally benefit the US. While the PR services part that I pursued did not add any value to my application, the regular calls with Judith did help a lot.

With the expertise and encouragement from Judith, Chris, and his team, you will find that this seems difficult or nearly impossible journey is possible! In hindsight, I regret not having met them and done this earlier. I would have saved my daughter too from unfortunately aging out.

In order to qualify for an EB1 Green Card you need to be able to satisfy three from a list of ten categories. We’ve provided informative videos on each category for your kind perusal so please review them and get back to us if you feel we can help you.

Select Your 3 EB1 Categories

Checkout these EB1 green card categories below. If you can satisfy three categories, then you may just qualify for your green card. Good luck.

 
Immigration Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram

Immigration Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram

US Immigration Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram
Chris M. Ingram LL.M., ESQ – Immigration Attorney
Admitted in New York.
Practice Specializing in US Immigration Law
401 Wilshire Boulevard, 12th Floor,
[Cross Streets 4th and Wilshire]
Santa Monica,
California 90401
Tel: 310 496 4292

Everyday the Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram provides a comprehensive range of US Immigration expertise. We also provide a free consultation for our prospective clients.

Please note that nothing contained in this website or link therefrom shall be regarded as providing legal advice. Please contact us directly for legal advice specific to your situation. Thank you.

Specializing in the E2 Visa, EB1 Green Card, L-1A Visa and O1 Visa and K1 Visa Marriage-Based Immigration. Attorney Chris M. Ingram is dedicated to providing the very best in US Immigration legal representation. Enjoy our website.

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