Denise Collazo - Social Justice Leader & Mentor

Record-breaking funding, life-changing impact and personal growth: all thanks to Denise Padin Collazo’s award-winning book

June 29, 2022

For Denise, participating in advocacy is not a luxury – it’s a necessity. Across three decades, she has seen Latinas and women of colour work together to win some of the most transformative social justice changes. But she’s also seen the personal toll it’s taken on them and has watched them slowly burn out. Denise…

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I Am From

June 28, 2022

  I am from dirt floor where the alcaldía now stands. I am from hands twisted from sewing by the piece. I am from where people say ‘Buen Día’ whether they know you or not, where the salt water of ocean meets the salt water tears, and salty sweat of my ancestors. Where the grief…

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We all fall down. It’s how we get up that matters.

March 23, 2022

I just returned to work after having taken off 5 months in a fully paid sabbatical leave. It’s been a gift from God to me. I had spent 20 years at a social change nonprofit organization. Alright, now how many of you want to come work at my company? While I was on sabbatical I did so…

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Fear Courage

Lessons on Leadership from the Cowardly Lion

March 21, 2022

Do you remember the Cowardly Lion from the Wizard of Oz? I love the way he strokes his tail to settle his nerves. How tremors overtook him as he cowered behind Dorothy for protection. But most importantly, do you remember watching him turn into the Courageous Lion? Like the lion in the story, every day as leaders, we…

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Denise Padín Collazo’s New Book Addresses How Latinas Can Handle Burnout in Activism

March 8, 2022

Latinas, who are already challenged by systemic racism, experienced devastating economic loss during the pandemic with unemployment among Latinas reaching as high as 20 percent in April of 2020 according to a recent report by UnidosUS. As the report finds, “Latinas have confronted a triple crisis in the face of COVID-19: disproportionately higher infection rates, economic losses,…

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Loving like I’ve never loved before

February 14, 2022

Last year my incredible colleague Catalina Morales asked me a haunting question, “What do you need to leave behind so you can meet your future self?”.  As I reflect on last year and slow-walk into this year I know one thing I’m laying down:  compartmentalization. The Oxford Languages dictionary defines compartmentalization as the division of…

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Mujeres latinas

Dear Latina Sisters: Will You Name and Disrupt Anti-Blackness?

February 4, 2022

I live in the neighborhood where George Floyd was killed,” explains Catalina Morales, an activist on the front lines of change. “I want to bring pan dulce to my neighbors.” This instinct to lean in and show our love and empathy is an instinct we would all do well to follow. Catalina has spent her…

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Puerto Rican Social Justice Leader Links the Activism of Latinas and African American Women

February 4, 2022

Denise Collazo, senior advisor for external affairs of Faith in Action, urges Latinas to “follow African American women because they have operated successfully on the frontlines for ages.” “Our African American sisters have been helping make the lie of the American Dream more true since before the country was founded,” she added. To Black and…

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Denise Padín Collazo

Thrive In Your Brilliance: Latina Leader, Author on How To Create Change

February 3, 2022

You may not have heard of the artichoke capital of the world—Castroville, California—but you definitely need to hear and know more about Denise Padín Collazo, a leader, advocate, director and author who coincidentally was born in Castroville. Senior advisor for external affairs and director of institutional advancement at Faith In Action, (formerly PICO National Network),…

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4 generaions of women in my family

Coming off mute: Breaking the family cycle of violence against women

November 23, 2021

Trigger Warning:  Mention of rape, sexual assault and violence against women. Violence against women is often generational In my family, and likely in yours, violence against women is generational. What violence against women looked like for my grandmothers My Abuela Lela hit her limit seventy-five years ago on the day my Abuelo Marcos threw a…

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