Catalina Velasquez

Director of Young People For, Trans and Immigration Activist

Catalina is the Director of Young People For. A transgender immigrant from Colombia, she has lived in the U.S. for 14 years and only holds legal presence with the ability to work in the U.S. based on the recent Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). As a U.S. refugee, she knows what it is like to be "otherized" by a world that fears what is different. Fluent in English, Spanish, and Italian, Catalina is an alumnus of Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, where she majored in International Politics: International Law, Norms, & Institutions with a Certificate in Women and Gender Studies. Her thesis was titled "Immigrant Women: the Documented, the Undocumented, and the Invisible; The Female Face of Immigration." In March 2012, Catalina co-authored with the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) a lengthy and detailed human rights report titled: "Trabajadoras: Challenges and Conditions of Latina Workers in the United States." Catalina is a recipient of the President’s Volunteer Award from the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation and was awarded the title of Ambassador for Peace by the Universal Peace Federation and the Inter-religious and International Federation for World Peace. She is also an appointed Commissioner to the D.C. Mayor’s Office of Latino Affairs. Catalina currently serves as a vital and dynamic Advisory Council member of United We DREAM's Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project and she has previously worked with the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) as a policy analyst. Catalina is the President and Founder of Consult Catalina a premier strategic policy, communications and diversity firm and a board member of GetEqual and Inclusv.

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