Program Staff

Our staff is comprised of Latinx women who are Assistant Professors, Primary and Secondary Teachers, business professionals, graduate students and undergraduates.

We are also writers, poets, singers, dancers and artists. We bring our wisdom, love for writing and our individual talents together to facilitate a unique experience for our #ChicasFuertes.

Writing Mentors

Tracey

Program Director / Writing Mentor

Full Name: Dr. Tracey T. Flores 

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella 

Hometown: Phoenix, AZ 

Current Position: Assistant Professor at UT Austin

Number of Years with our program: Staffed in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019

Hobbies: Running, Writing, Reading Children’s Literature & Young Adult Literature, Taking Pictures of Cactus, Drinking Coffee 

Why I Write: I write for my mother, my Nana Josie, for my daughter, Milagros and for my students. I write to unearth our histories, illuminate our stories and break silences. I write to heal and to dream of a new world alongside our chicas. 

Stephanie

Writing Mentor / Multimedia Designer

Full Name: Stephanie Marie Flores

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella 

Hometown: Phoenix, Arizona 

Number of Years with our program: Staffed in 2016, 2018, 2019

Current Position: Entrepreneur / Facilitator / Yoga Instructor

Hobbies: Watching movies, reading, blogging, yoga, listening to music and connecting with friends.

Why I Write: Writing helps me express my feelings and gain clarity on life, from what I observe and witness to what I experience. Writing is my power and an extension of my voice. I consciously choose to no longer be silent.

Alethea 

Writing Mentor, Google Classroom Coordinator

Full Name: Alethea Maldonado

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella 

Hometown: Rockdale, Texas

Current Position: ESL Teacher – Lockhart Junior High

Number of Years with our program: 2019 Program Presenter

Hobbies: Reading, writing, playing with my cats, and staying active through running, tennis, volleyball, softball

Why I Write: I write because I love to put my thoughts on paper. I always discover something new about myself when I try different writing strategies when I write. I think it’s important to preserve your thoughts and ideas on paper in different forms and to share your writing with those around you. Every person has something to say and share and writing allows you to discover that part of you and your connection with those around you.

Desiree

Writing Mentor

Full Name: Desiree Munro

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella 

Hometown: San Antonio, TX

Current Position: 2nd grade – Polk County Florida 

Number of Years with our program: Staffed in 2019

Hobbies: Reading, writing, traveling, yoga, and learning tik tok dances. 

Why I Write: I write because for me it helps me hold onto the memories I have had and to reflect back on how I may have felt in different phases of my life. I write to share my perspectives on things. I write to gather my thoughts and when I’m ready, share these thoughts with the world in hopes to make it a better place.

Judith

Writing Program, Google Classroom Coordinator

Full Name:  Judith Landeros

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella 

Hometown: Cicero, IL 

Current Position: University Instructor/ Graduate Student at UT Austin

Number of Years with our program: Staffed in 2019

Hobbies: gardening, cooking, plant medicine, playing the jarana & drumming, dancing, creativity

Why I Write: I try to write in a way that emanates how my heart and mind engage in conversation. I believe that writing is not limited to words on a page, but it is expressed in creative and multiple modalities. I write to unlearn and engage in the process of (re)membering and (re)storying.

Sandra 

Writing Mentor

Full Name: Sandra M. Saco

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella

Hometown: Glendora, CA

Current Position: 11th Grade English

Hobbies: I love to read, write, cook, gardening, journaling, and spin!

Why I Write: I write to express my inner thoughts and feelings when I reflect about the world and what is going on in my life; to remember moments and details that often go unnoticed and I write to tell my story and that of my parents, because they worked so hard for me to have the opportunity and privilege of having an education.

Yaikira

Writing Mentor

Full Name: Yaikira Vazquez Rivera

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella 

Hometown: San German, Puerto Rico 

Current Position: 3rd Grade Dual Language – AISD

Hobbies: Dancing, Exploring crafts, Organizing Events 

Why I Write: I write to share the story of my ancestors and to give a platform to Latina’s who have been historically repressed.


Peer Writing Mentors

Fabiola

Peer Mentor

Full Name: Fabiola Guadalupe Rodriguez

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella 

Hometown: Saltillo Coahuila Mexico

Number of Years with our program: Program Participant in 2018, 2019

Current Position: student and high school freshmen 

Hobbies: writing, listening to music, watching cartoons and movies, drawing and any sort of adventure.

Why I Write: I write as a way to keep myself balanced and have a clearer view of my problems.

I write because in the future my writing is  going to be important and valuable to me and my family.


Program Support

Karen

Tech Support

Full Name: Karen French Montoya

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella

Hometown: Abilene, TX

Number of Years with our program: Staffed in 2018, 2019

Current Position: Associate Director, Office of Instructional Innovation | College of Ed | UT Austin

Hobbies: DIY home projects, watching movies with my husband, being trained by our pets, nerd tech

Why I Write: I did not enjoy writing as a young person, but I write at work every day. I write to explain how to do things, so my writing must be clear and simple with no extra words. At the same time, I love to tell stories. Writing for fun allows me to tell stories with as many words as I like. I can start sentences with “BUT” and use contractions and do whatever I want to do. Those are my own words. It feels like wearing fuzzy socks. Comfy.

Iris

Program Support

Full Name: Iris Treinies

Pronouns: She/Her/Ella 

Hometown: San Antonio, Texas

Current Position: 4th Grade- AISD

Number of Years with our program: Staffed in 2018, 2019

Hobbies: Reading, writing, cooking, yoga, drawing with my nephew

Why I Write: I write to explore the many thoughts in my head. Sometimes it feels like I have 100 tabs open in my head! Each time I write, I am able to capture thoughts and put together ideas in new ways. I get excited for the many things to come, as well as to heal and reflect on what has happened before. I write to tell my story and the story of the people who have come before me. I write for my students- especially to become a better co-conspirator and ally for them.