Jessica M. Vaughan's Biography

Director of Policy Studies


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Jessica M. Vaughan serves as Director of Policy Studies for the Center for Immigration Studies, a Washington, DC-based research institute that examines the impact of immigration on American society and educates policymakers and opinion leaders on immigration issues. She has been with the Center since 1992, and her area of expertise is immigration policy and operations, covering topics such as visa programs, immigration benefits and immigration law enforcement. Ms. Vaughan recently completed several major projects on immigration and crime, including a Department of Justice-funded project studying the use of immigration law enforcement in transnational gang suppression efforts. In addition, she is an instructor for senior law enforcement officer training seminars at Northwestern University’s Center for Public Safety in Illinois.

Prior to joining the Center, Mrs. Vaughan was a Foreign Service Officer with the State Department, where she served in Belgium and Trinidad & Tobago. Her articles have appeared in the Washington Post, Boston Globe, The Economist, In the National Interest, Providence Journal, Hartford Courant, Arizona Republic and other publications, and can be found at www.cis.org. She has testified before Congress several times and advises state lawmakers and agencies on immigration issues. She is frequently cited in news media reports on immigration, and has appeared on NPR, CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and PBS’s NewsHour with Jim Lehrer.

Mrs. Vaughan has a Master’s degree from Georgetown University and earned her Bachelor’s degree in International Studies at Washington College in Maryland.