What does your Hispanic/Latinx heritage mean to you?
My Mexican heritage is an important component of my identity. I have tried my whole life to represent my Mexican roots with honor and pride. My heritage means a strong sense of family, loyalty, and a fiery personality. My world has always consisted of the aroma of my grandma roasting chiles on the comal, dual languages in the household, and loud and passionate conversations that filled the walls of our home. Both of my parents, and especially my dad who was born in Mexico, always instilled in my brother and me a sense of pride in where our family comes from and the manner in which we were raised. There is so much of our culture and history to be proud of. We are beautifully diverse and are pivotal to the world we live in.
How do you celebrate or keep your Hispanic/Latinx roots alive in your daily life?
My grandparents played an important role in raising me. I grew up exclusively speaking Spanish with them, indulging in Mexican food and candy, watching novelas, and listening to my late grandfather sing corridos and ballads in Spanish. I still do all of these things today. I am a self-proclaimed taco connoisseur, I get excited over my favorite Mexican candies, I love indulging in novelas, and Spanish music is a part of my daily routine. There are a handful of songs in Spanish that hold a special place in my heart and specifically remind me of my grandpa. It also goes without saying that Selena Quintanilla will forever be my celebrity idol! She absolutely embodies my childhood in a nutshell. I hope to pass down all of the traditions I grew up with to future generations.
In what ways has your heritage positively guided your decision to pursue a career in the legal field?
As a first-generation college graduate, law school graduate, and professional in both my immediate and extended family, the thought of pursuing a legal career often seemed daunting and sometimes even unattainable. Although I did not always have the step-by-step guidance or a role model to look up to, my mom always made me believe that I was capable of anything and placed a strong emphasis on my education and self-reliance. Despite the challenges I came across, I kept my faith and just kept going. My parents and family members endured many obstacles that have granted me the privilege to live the life I presently live, and I often think of their sacrifices. Were it not for the work ethic, grit, and heart my heritage has instilled in me, I would not be where I am today. I honor their dreams by doing the work. Most importantly, as with many Latinx families, I was taught to always turn around and help others once I get where I am going.