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Ricardo Franco, New York Life Public Policy Fellow
Hometown: Shelton, Washington
School: University of Washington
Degree: B.A. American Ethnic Studies and Political Science

Placement 1: Office of Representative Dan Newhouse
Placement 2: United States Trade Representative

Ricardo Franco moved to Seattle to pursue higher education at the University of Washington, where he graduated with a B.A. in American Ethnic Studies and Political Science. As son to Mexican immigrants, his humble beginnings have been foundational to his desire to uplift the Latino community. He identifies with the working class struggle and the rural experience. His undergraduate career led him to explore social issues and to reflect on the Mexican American experience.

During his time in Seattle Ricardo interned with ACLU as an Intake Counselor, where he assisted individuals with legal concerns and helped navigate institutions by providing legal information and connecting them with legal clinics. He also worked with 21 Progress, an organization focused on leadership development of immigrant youth amongst other underrepresented community members. In this setting he supported the Build Your Dream team, which helped eligible undocumented youth apply for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. For his final quarter at the University of Washington Ricardo worked for the Washington State Senate, where in addition to learning about the legislative process he solidified his interest for environmental law and further narrowed his interest to agriculture-related issues.

As a CHCI Public Policy Fellow Ricardo aspires to understand how the federal government operates. In particular he seeks to gain a better understanding of agricultural policy, both domestic and international. His goal is to identify a career path in agriculture where he can focus on food security and improving the current agricultural model to make it more sustainable amidst environmental impacts.