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o-1 approval secured for margarita vaamonde, chef

Managing Partner Michael Wildes is pleased to announce that Wildes & Weinberg P.C. has secured O-1 visa classification on behalf of extraordinary Chef, Ms. Margarita Vaamonde, to work for the new Catch restaurant in Los Angeles.

Catch LA is the newest endeavor of EMM Group, one of New York’s most successful and multi-faceted hospitality management companies. The group is renowned for their highly popular branches of the Catch Restaurant in New York, Dubai, and Playa del Carmen as well as mid-town Manhattan establishment Lexington Brass.

Ms. Vaamonde has garnered a distinguished international reputation in the culinary world and currently serves as Sous Chef for the highly-praised Catch Dubai location. Over the past 8 years, Ms. Vaamonde has acquired extensive experience in various cuisines and advanced culinary techniques. Beginning in her home country of Venezuela, Ms. Vaamonde ascended the kitchen ranks from cook to head chef in a period of just 3 years. From there, she moved to Argentina where she worked for several prominent establishments such as Elena Restaurant (Four Seasons Hotel, Buenos Aires) and Antares Brewery and Restaurant, before relocating to Dubai to work for Reflets at the 5-star hotel, IHG Intercontinental, under 3-Michelin Star Chef Pierre Gagnaire. Notably, Ms. Vaamonde recently starred as an expert judge on the Korean reality TV show “The Global Cook-Off.” Her exceptional talent has also been duly recognized by the media, with a recent profile published by El Universal. These achievements confirm that Ms. Vaamonde is indeed an alien of extraordinary ability in the culinary arts field and deserving of an O-1 visa. We look forward to seeing Ms. Vaamonde continue to shine as she joins the esteemed group at Catch LA!


In order to qualify for an O-1 visa which allows individuals of extraordinary ability in the arts, sciences, athletics, education or business to live and work in the United States, a foreign national must provide adequate documentation to demonstrate that he/she has sustained national or international acclaim in their field.

In addition, the individual must provide substantial evidence to prove that he/she meets 3 of the 6 evidence categories defined by statute, as well as a written advisory opinion from a labor union or relevant peer group. The O-1 visa applicant must also show that he/she has an offer of employment in the United States to work in his/her field of expertise (or several offers of employment from multiple sources, along with a third-party Agent to petition on the individual’s behalf and connect him/her to the multiple employers).

For more than fifty six years, the firm of Wildes & Weinberg has concentrated its practice in all aspects of U.S. immigration and nationality law, servicing the immigration requirements of prominent American and International individuals and corporations, banks, industrial, financial and manufacturing concerns, and law firms in connection with the personnel needs of their foreign national employees.  In addition, the firm has a distinguished clientele and has done substantial immigration work for investors, scientists, physicians, bankers, performing artists, directors, writers, models, actors, athletes, fine artists, art dealers, curators, musicians, and literary agents.

For more information on the O-1 visa category, which allows individuals of extraordinary ability in the arts, sciences, athletics, education and business to live and work in the United States, please visit our Immigration 101 page or contact Michael Wildes at

For Further Information On How We Can Help Your Firm Meet Its Employment Eligibility Verification Obligations, Please Contact Amy Wildes At