IIUSA Events

IIUSA was joined by over 300 EB-5 professionals in Miami, Florida from October 23-25, 2017 for the 7th Annual EB-5 Industry Forum.

Event Recap
Guest of Honor
Conference Schedule

The EB-5 Industry Forum was the year’s premier EB-5 conference focusing on education and business development on a global scale. We welcomed more than 300 EB-5 industry stakeholders in Miami, Florida from October 23-25 at this pivotal moment for the EB-5 industry.

This year’s EB-5 Industry Forum was held at The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, Miami. The resort is located on a tropical island oasis just minutes from downtown Miami and 20 minutes from Miami International Airport.

Guest of Honor Speakers

Robert L. Johnson
Robert L. JohnsonFounder and Chairman
The RLJ Companies
Manuel A. Mencia
Manuel A. MenciaSenior Vice President
Enterprise Florida, Inc., Division of International Trade & Business Development
Charles Oppenheim
Charles OppenheimChief
Visa Controls Office, U.S. Department of State
Tomás Regalado
Tomás Regalado Mayor
City of Miami
Francis X. Suarez
Francis X. SuarezCommissioner
District 4, City of Miami

Conference Schedule

The conference theme this year – Global Connections. Local Results. – speaks to how our inherently global industry is intrinsically linked to local development and improving American communities.

As you will find in the schedule below, we have incorporated the theme in all of our conference programming. Blue is representative of programming that highlights the global nature of the EB-5 Program. Red represents programming that shows its positive effects for communities throughout the country.

Download Full Conference Schedule

  • 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM – IIUSA Committee Meetings: Public Relations, Editorial, Membership, and Best Practices
  • 11:00 AM – 12:00 AM IIUSA Committee Meetings: Investor Market, Banking, Compliance, and Public Policy
  • 12:30 PM – 01:00 PM – Welcome Lunch: “Year in Review”
    • Speakers:
      • Robert Kraft, President, IIUSA; Chairman, FirstPathway Partners
      • Peter Joseph, Executive Director, IIUSA 
  • 01:00 PM – 01:50 PM – Breakout Sessions
    • EB-5 Marketing: What You Need to Know to Find Investors from…
      • Panelists:
        • Irina Rostova*, Chair, IIUSA Investor Markets Committee; Partner, Rostova Westerman Law Group
        • Min Chan, Partner, Chan Law Firm LLC
        • Julian Montero, Partner, Arnstein & Lehr, LLP
        • Janak Mehta, Director, FRR Shares & Securities Ltd.
        • Reza Rahbaran, Principal, Rahbaran & Associates, PLLC
    • EB-5 Marketing: Optimizing Project Structure to Find Investors from…
      • Panelists:
        • Kyle Walker*, Director, IIUSA; Managing Partner, Green Card Fund
        • Angelique Brunner, Director, IIUSA; President, EB5 Capital
        • Michael Fitzpatrick, Vice Chair, Baker Tilly Capital, LLC
        • Julia Park, Managing Partner, Advantage America EB-5 Group
        • John Shen, CEO, American Lending Center
  • 01:50PM – 02:40 PM – Breakout Sessions
    • EB-5 in China: Latest Issues with Source of Funds & Capital Controls
      • Panelists:
        • Edward Beshara*, Managing Partner, Beshara P.A.
        • David Appel, Senior Partner, Marcum LLP
        • Ginny Fang, Director, IIUSA; CEO, Golden Gate Global
        • Charley Huang, Director, PKF Consulting Inc.
        • Jinhee Wilde, Principal and Managing Partner, Wilde & Associates, LLC
    • EB-5 in China: What’s Selling & Why
      • Panelists:
        • Kelvin Ma*, Partner, Demei Law Firm
        • Gary Dong, CEO, Wonderful International Economy and Culture Exchange Ltd.
        • Hongling Lin, President, Yingke Kaihong Investment Consulting Co. Ltd.
        • Howard Wu, CEO, Shanghai Can-Achieve Exit-Entry Services Co., Ltd
        • Joe Xu, President, Dacheng Immigration Consultant Co
  • 02:40 PM – 03:10 PM – Break & Networking
  • 03:10 PM – 04:00 PM  Breakout Sessions 
    • RFE Trends: What is USCIS Focused on in EB-5 Investor & Project Adjudications
      • Panelists:
        • Robert Divine*, Chair of Global Immigration Practices, Baker Donelson Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC
        • Scott Barnhart, President, Barnhart Economic Services
        • Michele Franchett, Partner, SGG Immigration LLP
        • Dan Lundy. Partner, Klasko Immigration LLP
    • EB-5 Project Due Diligence: A Growing List of Material Considerations Any Reasonable Investor Would Want to Know
      • Panelists:
        • Rana Jazayerli*, Partner, Phillips Lytle LLP
        • Laura Austin, Consulting Manager, BDO USA
        • Rupy Cheema, Partner, EB5 Diligence
        • Michael Kester, Economist, Impact DataSource, LLC
        • Russell Scarcella, Director, Exiger
  • 04:00 PM – 04:50 PM – Breakout Sessions
    • Regional Center Best Practices: What are Industry Standards for Key EB-5 Issues & Why?
      • Panelists:
        • Mary King*, Chair, IIUSA Best Practices Committee; COO, New York City Regional Center, LLC
        • Peyman Attari, President, AISA
        • Peter Calabrese, Head of U.S. Sales, CanAm Enterprise, LLC
        • Christian Triantaphyllis, Attorney, Foster LLP
        • Kyler James, Chief Economist, CMB Regional Centers
        • Richard Kristof, CEO, Investors Services Company of America
    • From Jail Time to SEC Actions, Mandamus to Civil Proceedings (and everything in between): EB-5’s Growing Footprint in the U.S. Court System
      • Panelists:
        • Robert Whyte*, Managing Partner, Whyte & Co
        • Michael Goldberg, Co-Chair, Fraud & Recovery Practice Group, Akerman LLP
        • Michael Homeier, Founding Shareholder, Homeier Law PC
        • Ira Kurzban, Partner, Kurzban Kurzban Weinger Tetzel & Pratt, P.A
        • Scot O’Brien, Partner, Akerman LLP
    • 05:00 PM – 07:00 PM Welcome Reception – Exhibit Hall & Ballroom Terrace

* = Panel moderator
Blue = Global connections focus
Red = Local results focus

  • 07:00 AM – 09:00 AM – Leadership Breakfast (Invite Only)
  • 08:00 AM – 09:00 AM – Breakfast Served at Ballroom Patio & Exhibit Hall
  • 09:00 AM – 09:30 AM – Guest of Honor: Speech from Mayor Regalado: “EB-5: Economic Development Tool of the 21st Century”
    • Speaker:
      • Tomás Regalado, Mayor of the City of Miami
  • 09:30 AM – 10:20 AM – EB-5 in Miami: Case Study in Public Private Partnership (P3)
    • Panelists:
      • Mikki Canton*, Managing Director, City of Miami EB-5 Regional
      • Manuel A. Mencia, Senior Vice President, Enterprise Florida, Inc
      • Francis Suarez, Commissioner, District 4, City of Miami
  • 10:20 AM – 11:10 AM – How EB-5 Fits into the Political & Policy Puzzle of the 115th Congress
    • Panelists:
      • Adam Greene*, Director, IIUSA; President, Live in America Financial Services LLC
      • Hunter Bates, Partner, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
      • Bill Gresser, Vice President, IIUSA; President, EB-5 New York State, LLC
      • George Foresman, Chairman, NYSA Capital
      • Tom Loeffler, Senior Counsel, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
      • Leon Rodriguez, Partner, Seyfarth Shaw LLP
  • 11:10 AM – 12:00 PM – Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace: Ensuring Your Voice is Heard Loud & Clear by Congress
    • Panelists:
      • Peter Joseph*, Executive Director, IIUSA
      • John Ashbrook, Founding Partner, Cavalry, LLC
      • Robert Kraft, President, IIUSA; Chairman, FirstPathway Partners
      • Hans Rickhoff, Senior Counsel, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
  • 12:00 PM – 01:30 PM – Lunch Served at Ballroom Patio
  • 01:30 PM – 02:00 PM – Pay Attention! IIUSA Has Got Your Back…Let Us Tell You How
    • Panelists:
      • Peter Joseph, Executive Director, IIUSA
      • Mariza McKee, Co-Chair, IIUSA Compliance Committee; Partner, Kutak Rock LLP
      • Warren Oakes, Chair, IIUSA Public Relations Committee; Paralegal, David Hirson & Partners, LLP
  • 02:00 PM – 02:50 PM – Guest of Honor: A Conversation with Robert Johnson on “A Career of Global Connections & Local Results”
    • Speakers:
      • Peter Joseph*, Executive Director, IIUSA
      • Robert Johnson, Founder and Chairman, The RLJ Companies
  • 02:50 PM – 03:20 PM – Break & Networking
  • 03:20 PM – 04:10 PM – EB-5 Compliance: Are You Ready for Project Site Visit, Regional Center Audits & Investor Interviews?
    • Panelists:
      • Carolyn Lee*, Partner, Miller Mayer, LLP
      • David Andersson, President, WORC Regional Centers
      • Richard Booth, EB-5 Compliance Officer & Vice President, Signature Bank
      • Pat Hogan, Director, IIUSA; CEO, CMB Regional Centers
      • Parisa Karaahmet, Partner, Fragomen Global
  • 04:10 PM – 05:00 PM – Prepared for the Long Haul: Understanding the Visa Backlog Today & Planning Ahead
    • Panelists:
      • Bernie Wolfsdorf*, Partner, Wolfsdorf Rosenthal LLP
      • Lee Li, Policy Analyst, IIUSA
      • Charles Oppenheim, Chief, Visa Controls Office, U.S. Department of State
  • 05:00 PM – 05:30 PM – Award Ceremony
    • Presenters:
      • Robert Kraft, President, IIUSA; Chairman, FirstPathway Partners
      • Peter Joseph, Executive Director, IIUSA
  • 05:30 PM – 07:00 PM – Evening Reception – Oceanfront Lawn

* = Panel moderator
Blue = Global connections focus
Red = Local results focus

  • 07:00 AM – 08:00 AM – Breakfast Served at Ballroom Patio & Exhibit Hall
  • 07:00 AM – 08:00 AM – Global Partners Breakfast (Invite Only)
  • 08:00 AM – 08:50 AM – Sustainment of Investment: Investor Risks & Potential Market-Based Solutions to the Capital Redeployment Conundrum
    • Panelists:
      • Ozzie Torres*, President, Torres Law, PA
      • Allison Berman, General Counsel, Greystone EB-5 Holdings
      • Ronald Fieldstone, Partner, Arnstein & Lehr, LLP
      • Joe McCarthy, Principal, American Dream Fund
      • Brad Stedem, Managing Director, CapUnited
      • Reid Thomas, Executive Vice President, NES Financial
  • 08:50 AM – 09:40 AM – Regional Center Trends in 2017: Terminations More Popular Than Approvals (and everything else you need to know)
    • Panelists:
      • Lincoln Stone*, Managing Partner, SGG Immigration LLP
      • Joseph Barnett, Associate, Wolfsdorf Rosenthal LLP
      • Kristal Ozmun, Partner, Miller Mayer, LLP
      • Cletus Weber, Director, IIUSA; Partner, Peng & Weber, PLLC
  • 09:40 AM – 10:00 AM – Break and Networking
  • 10:00 AM – 10:50 AM – EB-5 in China: New Opportunities & Unprecedented Challenges (and vice versa)
    • Panelists:
      • Elizabeth Peng*, Partner, Peng & Weber, PLLC
      • Jimmy Chen, Chairman, Guangdong Exit Entry Association
      • Steve Strnisha, Secretary-Treasurer, IIUSA; CEO, Cleveland International Fund
      • Rachel Zou, President, Guangzhou Lianhong Overseas Consultants Limited
  • 10:50 AM – 11:40 AM – Future of EB-5: Where will the Industry be in 2020 & Beyond?
    • Panelists:
      • Peter Joseph*, Executive Director IIUSA
      • Rafael Anchia, Managing Director, IIUSA; CEO, Civitas Capital Group
      • Robert Kraft, President, IIUSA; Chairman, FirstPathway Partners
      • Dave Souders, Director, IIUSA; Broker, Todd & Associates, Inc.
      • Nima Korpivaara, Partner, David Hirson & Partners, LLP
  • 11:40 AM – 12:00 PM – Closing Remarks
  • 12:00 PM – 02:00 PM – IIUSA Board Meeting/Lunch (Invite Only)

* = Panel moderator
Blue = Global connections focus
Red = Local results focus

Updated 10/16/17. Schedule and speakers subject to change.



Join us at the receptions on Monday (10/23) and Tuesday (10/24) in the beautiful Ritz Carlton resort, expanding your professional network, meeting further business partners, celebrating the global connections and local results created by EB-5.

Welcome Reception Sponsors

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Platinum Sponsors

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Gold Sponsors

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Silver Sponsors

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2016 EB-5 Industry Forum Photo Gallery

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