THE INITIATIVE

OUR VISION

OUR MISSION

The world is built by the impact of our diverse voices.

Hear each other.

Connect with each other.

Initiate the actions that will empower change.

Highlighting the voices empowering the world to redefine and create their own narratives.

 

Connecting individuals globally, upholding the significance of using their voices for change.  

DREAM

TEAM

MAP

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Ariana Palomo is a Latinx immigrant from Chihuahua, Mexico. She is guided by her background and community to advocate for issues impacting society. Her life revolves around the significance of advocacy, from speaking to members of her community, to advocating for change at the US Capitol. Within her community, she serves as the Mock Trial Director for the Dallas National Hispanic Institute region, TX Youth & Government Chief of Staff, and on the board for McKinney YMCA as well as the co-chair of the Student Board of Directors. Her strong passion for criminal justice reform has led her to aspire to become an attorney. She is currently a legal intern for the immigration firm, Saenz-Rodriguez & Associates, gaining experience in a field that is changing the life of many and understanding the change that is still imperative to enact. 

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Lauren Madrigal is a journalist, dancer, and actress. She has worked as an actress in several short films that focus on bringing awareness to important societal issues. "Amy" directed by Nicholas Simonin, focuses on the horrors of domestic abuse, and is an award-winning foreign short film. Lauren was also part of the journalism team, S7, in which she wrote articles including subject matter ranging from feminism to gun violence. As a dancer, she has grown to use her abilities for good, participating in fundraisers such as the North Park Children’s Health fundraiser. She is currently working as an intern for the Borgen Project, where she advocates for a focus on global poverty reduction in U.S. foreign policy. Her experiences as a hispanic female growing up in the entertainment industry have inspired her to find ways to make change.

ARIANA PALOMO

Founder

McKinney, Texas, USA

LAUREN MADRIGAL

Founder

McKinney, Texas, USA

Vivienne Garner is an African American youth advocate from Texas.  She currently serves as the 74th Youth Governor of Texas’ Youth and Government program and the Vice President of a service organization named Pearls and Ivy.  Her life mission is to bring the importance of civics and informed voting to the minds of teenagers, and she does this through outreach programs, including the YMCA Youth and Government program.  Vivienne spends time researching and experiencing the art of youth advocacy in order to show what can come from the compelling voice of a teenager.  The experiences that she has endured have shaped her into the servant leader that she is today.

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Isabel Hui is a rising freshman at Cornell University planning to double major in Comparative Government and Spanish. Her Hispanic and Chinese background played a pivotal role in teaching her the value of a strong community; as a result, her main motivation lies in giving back to others as much as possible. Throughout high school she prided herself on her work with several organizations with a focus on service including NHS, SNHS, and DECA, where she served as Vice President of Community Service. Her passion for large-scaled issues such as climate action and positive economic growth has guided her aspirations to be a foreign ambassador. Ultimately, she aims to leave the world a more positive and loving place than she found it.

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Anevay Ybáñez is a Mexican-American social justice advocate from South Texas. Being in such close proximity to the Mexican-American border, she has a firsthand view of the struggles and injustices of America's immigration system. She is the president of the National Hispanic Institute club at her school, and spends her spare time by either coaching children’s basketball or fostering puppies. She has participated in debates held in Washington D.C. through Junior Statesmen of America. She is active in her community by constantly being a voice of change and by participating in several protests regarding gun control, immigration, and the Black Lives Matter movement. On the 19th anniversary of the Columbine massacre, which was during her freshman year of high school, she helped organize a student walkout. As a latinx and member of the LGBT+ community, she strives to contribute to true change and peace, not only in America, but all over the world.

VIVIENNE GARNER

Director of 

Community Outreach

McKinney, Texas, USA

ISABEL HUI

Director of Advocacy

Ithaca, New York, USA

ANEVAY YBÁÑEZ

Director of 

International Relations

McAllen, Texas, USA

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Alexa Brantley is in charge of processing and reviewing literary material and interviews. She enjoys reading and writing poems and is passionate about using her voice to make a difference in the world we live in. She has won numerous awards for her poetry including a feature in Eber & Wein Publishing’s book, “Upon Arrival.” She is passionate about advocating for mental health, the normalization of therapy, women’s rights, equality for all races, and much more.

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Guided by her innate strive and countless mentors, Dena Antowan began working within her community as a passionate advocate for community engagement, political knowledge, and social consciousness. The many experiences she has had as a young Middle Eastern woman living in a predominantly Hispanic community, have helped to shape her into the racially conscious and mindful person she has become. She currently works as the director of the Breaking Apathy Series for the nonprofit WE (fillintheblank), an intern for a local pain clinic, Cross-Examination director for NHI at El Paso, and the head of outreach for the local chapter of the nonprofit March for Our Lives, pushing to promote youth awareness and cultural understanding. 

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Kia Vilchez is a Latin American teenager living in Antigua Guatemala who remains involved with global issues. The experience of living in many countries around the world, from Central  America to Southern Africa, has given her an international perspective on human and civil rights globally.  These international experiences have shaped her passions in  social and criminal justice. Participating in the Model UN program and Student Government has helped grow her interests in international issues and being a leader for change. Volunteering for various organizations in  her community has helped her decide to follow a career in criminal law and human rights.

ALEXA BRANTLEY

Director of Arts

McKinney, Texas, USA

DENA ANTOWAN

Director of

Youth Engagement

El Paso, Texas, USA

KIA VILCHEZ

Director of International Relations

Antigua, Guatemala

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Anthony Saucedo is a graphic designer based in Dallas, Texas who joined the Raise Your Voice team in May of 2020. He is a currently a student at the University of Texas at Austin with a major in Advertising, and he will be graduating in 2024. With previous work for non-profit organizations in media maintenance and strategy, Saucedo enjoys contributing to projects that empower communities and create social progress. In his free time, he enjoys car rides with friends, and watching stand-up comedy specials. 

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Tatiana Pokorny is a teenager who was born and raised in Guatemala. Growing up in a developing country and being constantly surrounded by poverty, injustice, and pollution made Tatiana realize the need for change. Last year, she wrote a petition to ban single-use plastic in her hometown, Antigua. The petition has since been taken on by an environmental group and is going into effect. Tati is currently an active member of her school’s Model UN program as well as The Last Chance, which is a youth environmental group. She is interested in following a career in psychology with a focus on eating disorders and survivors of sexual abuse.

Andrea Flores is 17 years old and lives in Torreón, Mexico, a small city in the north of her country. She loves both travelling and learning. She is very outspoken on important topics, and is never afraid of saying what she believes and what she knows. However, she is still very open to new ideas. Andrea is going into her senior year with a focus on human studies. In the fall 2021, she will be attending college in Mexico where she plans to major in psychology. Andrea aspires to study abroad for a year in order to learn more about another country. Her ultimate goal would be to get a doctorate in Psychology.

ANTHONY SAUCEDO

Director of Design

Dallas, Texas, USA

TATIANA POKORNY

Columnist+Interviewer

Antigua, Guatemala

ANDREA FLORES

Columnist+Interviewer

Torreon, Coahuila, Mexico

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Chase Rhodes Patterson is an anarchist from Austin, Texas. His life-long fascination with politics combined with his conservative school environment has led him into many debates, and each of them has instilled one central idea: before you can strengthen your own beliefs, you must understand the beliefs of others. For this reason and many others, he is extremely excited to collaborate with Raise Your Voice. If Raise Your Voice can help even one person understand the thoughts of others, this endeavor will be a tremendous success.

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Alejandra Aguirre is an 18-year-old who was born in Mexico City. She has always loved the idea of raising her voice and giving her opinion on social aspects occurring not only in her country, but around the world. Alejandra considers herself a feminist and likes to research about aspects concerning it as well as create a conscience about feminism in society through social media and other digital platforms. She is a very social person who loves traveling, reading, writing, singing, and helping others. Alejandra is characterized as a strong determined woman who is never afraid of sharing her ideologies or fighting for what she believes in. In August of 2020, she will be in her senior year of high school in Escuela Sierra Nevada in Mexico City, and after graduating in 2021, she plans to attend college in order to study for a Bachelor of Business Administration in Entertainment. She hopes to achieve each and every one of her goals while motivating others to do so too. 

Molly Walker is a seventeen year old rising senior from Baltimore, Maryland. She attends the Community College of Baltimore County where she is finishing her high school credits while also completing college credits to receive her Associate’s Degree in Political Science in Spring of 2021. She is a YMCA National Advocate where she has met with congresspeople and other youth advocates from around the country.  She is currently serving as the Secretary of State in the Maryland Youth and Government program which she has participated in for four years. Molly has always been fierce and passionate, beginning with her personal discovery of feminism. Since then, she has been an unapologetic feminist who is committed to researching, proposing action, and advocating for change to protect the under privileged. 

CHASE PATTERSON

Columnist+Interviewer

Austin, Texas, USA

ALEJANDRA AGUIRRE

Columnist+Interviewer

Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico

MOLLY WALKER

Columnist+Interviewer

Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Ana Isabel is a 16 year who is passionate about sports, debate, theater, and politics. She graduated from the Latin American Laboratory for Citizen Action, is the founder of Mentez mas Verdez, was President of Las America LDZ, is currently the President of the debate club at her school, the second place winner in extemporaneous speaking in Great Debate in 2018, was an active speaker in NHI talks 2019, has participated in plays such as "The Addams Family,”  has played roles as Tracy Turnblad in "Hairspray", and finally, is an active volunteer for several foundations especially Techos Panama.

 

Elena Townsend-Lerdo was born in San Francisco, California and is the daughter of immigrants from Mexico and Ireland. In 2016, she traveled to Nevada in order to canvas for Hillary Clinton and to produce a documentary about out-of-state volunteers. Disappointed by the election’s results, she vowed to improve her own ability to effect change. When she isn’t writing for her blog or about changemakers and social issues for Raise Your Voice, Elena can be found sending postcards to voters, texting for political campaigns, writing to elected officials, or encouraging teens to pre-register to vote. Elena also loves the arts: she plays the violin, sings in a vocal ensemble, enjoys creative writing, and works behind-the-scenes for her school’s theatrical productions. 

ANA ISABEL AMADO

Columnist+Interviewer

Panama

ELENA

TOWNSEND-LERDO

Columnist+Interviewer

San Francisco, California, USA