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Executive Director: Erika Almiron
Erika Almiron was born in South Philadelphia to immigrant parents from Paraguay and has spent almost two decades working in the Latino community. In her youth she served as president of various Latinx leadership organizations at her high school in Norristown as well as at Penn State University. She went on after school to work with Latinx communities in Philadelphia and surrounding counties on issues ranging from women’s health, gentrification, prison reform, and poverty. Several years ago she helped start the Media Mobilizing Project while working at the American Friends Service Committee with the Mexico/US border program on the issue of living and working conditions for maquiladora workers. Before becoming the Executive Director of Juntos she was the assistant director of the Philadelphia Student Union working with young people on leadership development and fighting for education reform. In her spare time she is a freelance photographer and her pictures have been published and exhibited over the last several years in Philadelphia and beyond. She has documented prison conditions in South America, mountain top removal in West Virginia, homelessness in Harlem, and most recently she received the prestigious Leeway Foundation Award to document agricultural reform and land distribution in Brazil and Paraguay.
Youth Organizer: Yared Portillo
Yared Portillo grew up in Santa María, California, the land of strawberry fields and oceans. She was raised by immigrant parents from Sinaloa, México. Before joining Juntos she majored in Latin American Studies at Swarthmore College. Since high school, she has worked around issues of education and college access for students of color. Yared is a Leeway Foundation Art and Change Grantee, through which she founded Philly’s current son jarocho project, Son Revoltura. She currently helps coordinate and teach talleres de jarana, versada y zapateado for Son Revoltura, working to create a space for the exploration of culture and the integration of art and music into la lucha.