Juana Ines PachecoBy Jose B. Rivera
A graduate of Princeton University, Ms. Pacheco has dedicated her entire professional life to community and economic empowerment for Latinos, both on the West and East Coasts.
Ms. Pacheco was special assistant to the President & General Counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund. Juana attributes Ms. Antonia Hernandez’s dedication and commitment with inspiring her to pursue social justice issues, geared specifically for Latino empowerment. While not of Mexican heritage, Ms. Hernandez and the Latino community in Los Angeles were welcoming and nurturing to her as a young woman beginning her career.
After a number of years away from her family, Ms. Pacheco moved back east to Washington, DC to work as a lobbyist on Capitol Hill advocating for campaign finance reform. Working with the Ralph Nader group, Public Citizens’ CONGRESSWATCH,
Photo to right - Juana Pacheco addressing the audience during the May 26 Community Board # 11 Public Hearing on the East River Plaza Project.
Juana researched FEC reports and other campaign documents to see the role that money plays in election results. She created position papers and reports on how campaign spending greatly affects women and people of color seeking to hold public office.
After a few years inside the Beltway, Juana began her graduate studies here in New York City as part of the National Urban Fellows program. Juana thanks Mr. Luis Alvarez and the Urban Fellows for the role they played in advancing her professional development with the Masters in Public Administration degree conferred upon her. Not only did the program provide a degree, they provided her with a tremendous network of mentors and role models which have served to provide her feedback and guidance in other pursuits. Most notable among these are Mr. Alfred Ramirez, Mr. Henry Cisneros, and Ms. Yolanda Sanchez.
Juana acknowledges the Puerto Rican Association for Community Affairs (PRACA) and most importantly Ms. Yolanda Sanchez in assisting her in her pursuit of community empowerment post Urban Fellows. Ms. Sanchez enabled Ms. Pacheco to begin her career in East Harlem, and also introduced her to her future husband Mr. Gilberto Cintron. After PRACA, Ms. Pacheco began raising her family, while also writing a book entitled Handsome Dividends - A Guide to Demystify the US Hispanic Market. This book was designed to show corporate America that the Latino community has very specific needs that should be acknowledged, especially in their marketing campaigns.
Photo at left - Juana Pacheco and Mark Alexander, the Executive Director of Hope Community, Inc., are all smiles after the May 26th Community Board # 11 meeting in which the board approved of the East River Plaza Project
Most recently, Ms. Pacheco was the Associate Director of the Office of the Governor of Puerto Rico here in Manhattan. During her tenure at the Governor’s office, she was able to secure over $300,000 in grants for various community groups throughout the state. In addition, she supervised a staff of 6 that dealt directly with community issues - such as birth certificates, death certificates, job placement, translations, etc.
As the proud mother of 2 little girls, Ms. Pacheco would like to begin her own business venture sometime in the near future in order to spend more time with her family. Ms. Pacheco sits on the Board of Directors of the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, Community Board #11, Mt. Sinai Community Advisory Board, Metropolitan Hospital Community Advisory Board, and most importantly is the Vice President of her children’s day care center’s Parent Association, Taft Day Care Center.
Editor’s Note: (April 2000) - Juana Pacheco has moved to Washington, D.C. where she works at the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Good Luck Juana!