Pursuing Immigration Justice

Woodson Martin

What's important to me is equality, and that we all have the same rights under the law.

Why am I, because I was born to parents with means in the USA, welcome to travel and work almost anywhere on the planet, when others who happened to be born to other parents in other places are not afforded the same rights? 

My name is Woodson Martin. I am a tech industry veteran with 20+ years of experience in global marketing strategy, sales management and recruiting. I am currently the General Manager of the Salesforce AppExchange, the world's leading online marketplace for enterprise software applications. I also serve on the Board of Directors of Mobile Pathways.

While my family’s roots go all the way back to the Mayflower, I am very passionate about immigration rights. 

In 2018, I took a sabbatical from Salesforce and spent most of my year as a humanitarian assistant for asylum seekers at the U.S./Mexico border. I walked into a bus station and signed up to volunteer, providing the most essential assistance to mothers and their children who, having endured detention by the Border Patrol, had been dropped off at the Greyhound terminal to make their way to relatives and sponsors across the country. 

During my time at the border, I witnessed the challenges and violence that face vulnerable populations when they seek refuge in our country. I am now an advocate for fair legal representation for immigrants in order to give families a fighting chance for a better life. 

While attending Dreamforces 2019, I joined a session about how an immigration nonprofit, Mobile Pathways, was using Salesforce to help immigrant advocates do their jobs better via mobile technology. It was there that I heard Jeffrey O’Brien, an immigration attorney (and co-founder of Mobile Pathways) speak passionately about immigration rights as human rights. 

I believe that the work Mobile Pathways is doing is innovative, effective, and necessary. I am excited about the potential of technology to scale access to immigration justice to millions who have no representation and minimal legal information today. 

Ninety-five percent of all immigration related giving is effectively charity--contributions fund individual assistance in the form of one-off legal assistance, food assistance, etc. Mobile Pathways is one of the few genuinely scalable efforts to systematically raise the chances of all immigrants getting a fair hearing in immigration proceedings. If you want to support systemic change, Mobile Pathways is a good bet. 

During this year’s Dreamforce, I will be introducing a young man who is very special to me, a trailblazing immigrant from Cameroon named Djamal.

He is a trailblazer working with Mobile Pathways who illustrates the best of the immigrant spirit, and who has persevered in his dream against all odds. You can learn more about Djamal’s story here and about the success of his asylum case here.

Djamal's story, and the stories behind the tireless work of Mobile Pathways, are ones about the power of us -- what we can do together when we allow ourselves to be inspired by the people with the courage to make the leap, to escape the bonds of injustice, and to change their lives and change the world.