For more than 20 years, Alexandra Oliver-Dávila has worked to create a community that supports young people, values their input, and believes in their ability to create positive social change. Serving as Executive Director since 1999, Alex has transformed Sociedad Latina into a cutting-edge, data-driven youth development organization. Under her leadership, Sociedad Latina has quadrupled its budget, expanded board membership, increased the number of youthandfamilies served, expanded programming, and developed our Cultural Studies curriculum. Read more.
Lydia Emmons, Director of College & Career Pathways
Lydia Emmons earned her Bachelor’s in Urban and Community Studies from the University of Connecticut and holds certificates in Youth Trauma Response and Non-Profit Leadership. She is currently completing the Massachusetts Education Policy Fellowship Program through the Rennie Center for Education Research & Policy. Lydia joined Sociedad Latina in 2009 as a Highland Street Corps Ambassador of Mentoring and was then hired as a Workforce Development Coordinator. As Director of College & Career Pathways, Lydia oversees the Education and Workforce Development programs, evaluates program components and liaises with partners.
Juan Maldonado, Director of Arts, Culture & Civic Engagement
Juan Maldonado earned a Bachelor’s in Professional Music, with a concentration in Music Education, from Berklee College of Music. Prior to joining Sociedad, Juan founded, launched and directed a music school near Boston. Juan is a skilled musician, appearing in events such as the Monterey Jazz Festival, Bean Town Jazz Festival, Duke Ellington Jazz Festival, Sarasota Jazz Festival and Heineken Jazz Festival. In 2014, Juan was awarded the Berklee Urban Service Award for his outstanding work with youth in Boston. Juan was recently selected as a chair for Boston Creates, a community-wide effort to harness creativity and build a shared vision for arts and culture in Boston. As the Director of Arts & Civic Engagement, Juan oversees all community arts and engagement initiatives, manages program staff and develops curricula and lesson plans. Juan is bilingual in English and Spanish.
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Laura Simocko has an M.Phil. in Race, Ethnicity, Conflict from Trinity College Dublin and a B.A. in Peace & Conflict Studies from Colgate University. Her previous experience includes direct service and development roles at the Immigrant Legal Advocacy Project of Maine, Catholic Charities Maine and Academia Europea Dominicana. At Sociedad, Laura is responsible for fundraising and oversight of evaluation and marketing.
Florencia Bluthgen, Development Associate
Florencia Bluthgen holds a Bachelor's in Communications from Universidad Austral in Argentina, and an MA in Sustainable International Development from Brandeis University. She previously worked in nonprofits in Argentina, Colombia and Haiti. At Sociedad, Florencia implements the grant writing, reporting, and marketing components of the organizational fundraising plan. Florencia is fluent in English and in Spanish.
Shynnah Cueto-Monge, Workforce Development Coordinator
Shynnah Cueto-Monge is currently pursuing an Associates Degree in Human Services at Bunker Hill Community College. She has been involved at Sociedad Latina for more than seven years, transitioning from a Youth Leader to an employee. While in high school, Shynnah was an intern at Brigham & Women's Hospital through the Jovenes Latinos Pro Salud and a Youth Artist. Shynnah is bilingual in English and in Spanish.
Daniel Davis, College Access & Career Coordinator
Daniel Davis holds a Bachelor's in Spanish Language & Literature and a Master's in Teaching from Clark University. Before joining Sociedad in 2014, Dan taught Spanish to high school students in Grafton and Worcester. At Sociedad, Dan supports our Mission Possible! programming in the community and with BPS school partners. Dan is fluent in Spanish.
Victoria Garcia, Office Manager
Victoria Garcia is a former Youth Leader in our Health Careers for Youth program. After completing high school, she joined Sociedad Latina as a temporary receptionist before being hired as a full-time employee. Victoria ensures the smooth daily operation of the office, coordinates phone and IT systems and is a primary point of contact for Youth Leaders and families. Victoria is bilingual in English and Spanish.
Maria Grande, Development Associate
Maria Grande holds a Bachelor's Degree in English Language Literature and Creative Writing from Providence College. After graduating from college, Maria joined the Sociedad Latina staff as an AmeriCorps VISTA ServiceWorks Program and Development Leader, where she worked with youth ages 16-24 in developing college and career readiness skills while integrating community service. After her service year, Maria became a full-time staff member at Sociedad Latina as a Development Associate, writing grants, reporting, and working with our individual donor network. Throughout her time in college and during her AmeriCorps year, Maria developed and facilitated various workshops on diversity and cultural proficiency, including educating groups about recognizing and combating microaggressions, as well as training people on different methods to create safe, open environments in classrooms and workplaces for students and employees, to name a few.
Nyerrie Hale, STEAM Coordinator
Nyerrie Hale is currently pursuing a Bachelors in English and Entrepreneurship, at Salem State University. Prior to joining our team, Nyerrie worked for Phillips Brooks House Association, as a Leaders Director, with their Summer Urban Program. Along with that Nyerrie has held several leadership positions at his college including being a Student Ambassador for Salem State University's Diversity and Multicultural Affairs office. At Sociedad, Nyerrie coordinates our STEAM Team program for middle schoolers.
Emily Lewis, ServiceWorks Recruitment and Outreach Leader, Boston Cares AmeriCorps VISTA
Emily Lewis holds a Bachelor's Degree in Sociology from Emmanuel College. Prior to her AmeriCorps VISTA position, Emily worked with our middle school STEAM Team program as the Program Assistant. As a Recruitment and Outreach Leader she facilitates the ServiceWorks curriculum at our various partner locations. Emily is working with youth ages 16-24 to develop career and college readiness skills while integrating community service and developing youth lead service capstone projects.
Yamileth Lopez, Bookkeeper
Yamileth Lopez holds an Associates Degree in Business Administration with an Accounting option from Bunker Hill Community College. She currently attends the University of Massachusetts, Boston when she is studying Business Management with a concentration in Accounting. Yamileth coordinates all billing, accounting, and human resources for the organization.
Ornan Mendez, Program Assistant
Ornan Mendez is currently pursuing an Associate's degree in Business concentration at Bunker Hill Community College, and plans to transfer to a four-year college to gain a Bachelor's degree in Business. He started working at Sociedad Latina as a Youth Community Organizer back in 2013. While in high school, Ornan was an intern at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Ornan is now a Program Assistant for the Civic Engagement projects. He is fluent in English and in Spanish.
Betsabe Monge Ayuso, Family Engagement Assistant
Betsabe Monge was born in Puerto Rico, but has lived in Boston all her life. Betsabe became involved with Sociedad Latina ten years ago through her children; four of her six children are or have been Youth Leaders. She currently develops and mantains relationships with youth and families to help parents become more involved in their child's life, supports individual youth, and connects youth and families with services as needed. Betsabe is also a pastor for her community at Mission Hill. She is Bilingual in English and Spanish.
Jenna Nackel, STEAM Manager
Jenna Nackel holds a Bachelor's in Education and Social Justice from Vassar College. Before joining Sociedad in 2014, Jenna worked for Cambridge Montessori School and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay. She coordinates the daily implementation of our middle school STEAM Team, liaises with families and works closely with our partner schools. She is fluent in English and Spanish.
Raquel Navarro, Program Assistant
Raquel Navarro started in Sociedad Latina as a Youth Artist four years ago and then made her way up to a permanent staff position. She is a vocal performer and learned to play the bass and piano at Sociedad. As a Youth Artist, she composed three original songs and performed at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), the House of Blues, and different community events. She is currently attends Roxbury Community College, where she is majorng in music. At Sociedad, Raquel instructs classes and assists the Program Coordinator with workshops and ensembles.
Wilmer Quinones, Civic Engagement Coordinator
Wilmer Quinones is currently attending Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology. At Sociedad, he has previously been a Youth Community Organizer, Student Facilitator for the ELL Student Youth Advisory and Program Assistant for the Saturday ELL Academy. Wilmer is bilingual in English and Spanish.
Abraham Sierra Jr., ALAS Access & Success Coach
Abraham Sierra is currently pursuing an Associates Degree in Human Services from Bunker Hill Community College. Prior to joining Sociedad Latina, Abraham worked as an AmeriCorps Vista recruting and matching Success Coaches with service scholars and facilitating soft skills and professional development workshops. At Sociedad, Abraham provides transition coaching to youth through their first two years of college. Abraham is bilingual in English and Spanish.
Josh Snyder, Arts, Culture & Music Coordinator
Josh Snyder holds a Bachelor's in Jazz Composition from Berklee College of Music. Prior to joining Sociedad Latina, he worked as a private guitar instructor and taught at the Yawkey Boys & Girls Club. Josh is currently completing a fellowship through the Music Educators and Teaching Artists program with the Massachusetts Cultural Council. At Sociedad Latina, Josh coordinates the Youth Artists program and teaches school-day music classes with BPS partners.
Victor Velazquez, Emprende! Program Coordinator
Victor Velazquez holds a Bachelor's degree in Business Management and a Master's degree in Technological Entrepreneurship from Northeastern University. He previously worked with the Bennington County Regional Communication developing a plan for affordable housing in Vermont. He was also Community Adviser at Southern Vermont College and was part of various startups and entrepreneurial endeavors. At Sociedad, Victor teaches our emprende! program at BPS partners. Victor is bilingual in English and Spanish.
Jose Villa, Program Assistant
Jose Villa is currently pursuing Bachelors degree in Professional Music at Berklee College of Music. Before coming to Sociedad Latina, Jose directed his own Music Academy at Laredo, Texas. He started working at Sociedad in 2014 as a Berklee Work Study student helping the Program Coordinator with the Youth Artists. Currently, he coordinates the Saturday Community Art Classes.