A Growing Nation of Leaders

The thing I love the most about working with Democracia USA is how our work taps into the immense leadership potential of Hispanics across the country. Weekly, I will be blogging to share the stories of Democracia USA’s Leadership Academy participants. These emerging leaders have helped to register hundreds of thousands of Latinos and, just as importantly, want to continue to give back to their communities through service. For the next nine weeks, over 100 leaders from around the country will be developing their leadership and organizing skills through D-USA’s Leadership Academies in Florida, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Nevada, & Colorado.


This week, I wanted to highlight Yvonne Franco, a participant in D-USA’s Colorado Academy. She is a young Latina leader that wants to help her local community better understand the power they have to make a difference in their town of Pueblo. Tough economic times and environmental challenges have hit Southern Colorado hard over the years, but Yvonne is determined to be part of the solution.


The next video clip is of Ines and George Shimp. This wonderful Colombian-American family has relocated to Las Vegas in search of the American dream and Democracia USA has allowed them to educate their friends and neighbors on the importance of their voice in the political process. Seeing these two in action in person was a highlight of my week. I think they are both extremely proud of how they have helped in each other grow as leaders and as people through their experience with Democracia USA. I congratulate Yvonne, Ines and George and look forward to working with more of Democracia’s rising stars in the coming weeks.




Rafael Collazo

National Deputy Director

Democracia USA


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