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Official Airline of the CHCI Alumni Association



Alumni in Elected & Appointed Office

Luis Ayala
City of Alhambra
Alhambra, CA
1997-1998 CHCI Fellow

Anthony Alcoser
Member- Board of Trustees
Harlandale ISD
San Antonio, Texas
2003 Intern

Ben Cardenas
Member- Board of Education
Montebello Unified School District
Montebello, CA
2002-2003 Fellow

Alejandra Castillo
Member- Board of Trustees
University of the District of Columbia
1992-1993 Fellow

Abel Herrero
State Representative
Texas House of Representatives
1992 Intern

 Andres Quintero
Appointed Governing Board Member
Alum Rock Union Elementary School District
San Jose, CA
2003 Intern

José G. Pérez
City of Milwaukee
Milwaukee, WI
1996 Intern

Jessie Ulibarri
State Senator
Colorado Senate
2006-2007 Fellow

Michael Vargas
Secretary, Board of Trustees
San Benito Consolidated Independent School District
2007 Intern

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Orson Aguilar - CHCI 2011 Distinguished Alumnus & September 2011 Alumnus

   Hometown:                  Los Angeles (Boyle Heights), CA
   Current City:                  Oakland, CA
   Current Job:                 Executive Director, The Greenlining Institute
   CHCI Program/Year:     Fellow 1997-1998 (Interned at the office 
  of Lucille Roybal-Allard and at ACCION International)

  What have you been doing since you finished the CHCI program(s)?

  Inspired by CHCI, I completed my Master’s Degree in Public Affairs at
  the University of Texas at Austin.  The experience I gained at CHCI
  made graduate school easier and more understandable.  I was able to
  contribute real world experiences to the classroom.

  Upon finishing my Master’s Degree in Texas, I moved to Northern
  California to take a Program Manager position at the Greenlining
  Institute. I thought this would be a two year job that would prepare me
  for my next career move. Ten years later when the founders of
  Greenlining retired, I became the second Executive Director of the
  organization’s history.  This was not in my master plan and this was not
  something I even considered when I arrived to Greenlining. But I
  couldn’t think of a more perfect job given my interests.

  I got married three years ago to Dr. Claudia Canizales (now Claudia
  Aguilar).  We now have two beautiful children. Emilio recently turned 2
  and Nayeli is 3 months.

What impact did your CHCI experience have on your career and development as a leader?

CHCI made me realize that anything is possible if you are willing to work hard and follow your vision. I met Latinos that were doing extraordinary things in government, the non-profit sector and in government.

However, CHCI also instilled in me a sense of urgency given that I saw many prominent positions where Latinos were absent.

CHCI also demonstrated to me the power of people working across sectors and the importance of public-private partnerships.   

I often say, CHCI is my well connected “Tia” that catapulted my career by allowing me into “her” network.  As a child of immigrants, I didn’t have the community or family connections that CHCI has afforded me. 

How have you stayed engaged in community service?

My entire career has been devoted to community service. Outside of my work at Greenlining I serve on other boards and commissions that help make positive social change.

What advice would you give current and future CHCI participants?

Don’t “over plan” your career.  Let your vision take you forward and be open to new opportunities that you never knew existed.  Our world is constantly changing and new jobs emerge each day that didn’t exist before. These are the jobs you want.

It is extremely important to make and maintain strong networks. Always continue to meet people and establish meaningful connections with them. Climbing your career ladder is difficult without strong networks.

Finally, don’t let ambitions of making money be your primary purpose in life. I strongly believe that the money will follow if you follow your vision and choose a career that you enjoy.

Where do you see yourself in the next 5-10 years?

Five years from now I see myself having more impact in the field of social change.  My experience, skills, and growing networks will make this possible. 

Past Alumni of the Month

Gladis Molina - August 2015 Alumnus of the Month
Michael Anthony Vargas - July 2015 Alumni of the Month
Desiree Flores - June 2015 Alumna of the Month
Guillermo Raya - May 2015 Alumni of the Month
Nathaly Arriola - April 2015 Alumnus of the Month
Miguel A. Blancarte, Jr. - March 2015 Alumni of the Month
Martha L. Bahamón - February 2015 Alumni of the Month
2013-14 CHCI Alumni Executive Board - January 2015 Alumni of the Month
Mariana Kihuen - December 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Henry Fernandez - November 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Ricardo Zavala - September 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Miryam Catherine Granthon-Gerdine - August 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Angelica Reza Wind - July 2014 Alumna of the Month
Ray Mateo - June 2014 Alumni of the Month
Hayde Calderon - May 2014 Alumni of the Month
Arnoldo Avalos - April 2014 Alumni of the Month
Elizabeth Cedillo - March 2014 Alumni of the Month
Marvin Figueroa - February 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Cris Garza - January 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Jaden Felix - December 2013 Alumni of the Month
2013 Distinguished Alumni - October/November 2013 Alumni of the Month
Fabiola Carrion - September 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Juan C. Otero- August 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Norma Dominguez - July 2013 Alumni of the Month
Francisco Heredia - June 2013 - Alumnus of the Month
Raymond Rico - May 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Alejandra Castillo - April 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Yara Lorenzo - March 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Antonio E. Sandoval & Milagros “Mimi” Aledo-Sandoval - Alumni Couple of the Month
Abel Herrero - January 2013
Jessie Mosqueda - December 2012
Kenia Seoane Lopez - CHCI Alumnus November 2012
Hon. Liza Rodriguez - 2012 Distinguished Alumnus & October 2012 Alumnus
Melissa Chabran - CHCI Alumnus June 2012
Jessie Ulibarri - CHCI Alumnus May 2012
Congressional Staff-CHCI Alumni April 2012
Anthony Alcoser-CHCI Alumnus March 2012
Diana Mendoza-CHCI Alumnus February 2012
Betsaida Alcantara-CHCI Alumnus December 2011
Orson Aguilar - CHCI 2011 Distinguished Alumnus & September 2011 Alumnus
Cynthia T. Cruz-CHCI Alumnus August 2011
Miguel Lopez - CHCI Alumnus July 2011
Alejandro Becerra - CHCI Alumnus June 2011
Staff Members for the Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy - CHCI Alumnus May 2011
Happy 30th Anniversary CHCI Fellowship Program!
Raul Magdaleno - CHCI Alumnus March 2011
Carlos Elizondo -- CHCI Alumnus December 2010
Ana M. Polanco -- CHCI Alumnus April 2010
Sami Hamed -- CHCI Alumnus March 2010
Couple Edition -- CHCI Alumnus February 2010
CHCI Alumni Association Chapters' Special Edition - October 2009
Edith Rocío Robles -- CHCI Alumnus August 2009
Silvia Inéz Salazar--CHCI Alumnus July 2009
Francisco J. Uribe CHCI Alumnus June 2009
Heidy Servin-Baez CHCI Alumnus April 2009
March 2009: White House Edition
William (Bill) Arce CHCI Alumnus February 2009
Stephanie Valencia CHCI Alumnus January 2009
Miguel Ayala CHCI Alumnus December 2008
Eric Rodriguez-CHCI Alumnus November 2008
Sonia Ramirez CHCI Alumnus October 2008
Mildred Otero CHCI Alumnus September 2008
Juan Ciscomani CHCI Alumus August 2008
Leo Prieto CHCI Alumnus July 2008
Octavio Saenz CHCI Alumnus June 2008