READ: Latinx Alumni Stories

READ: Latinx Alumni Stories

Maria Teresa Kumar MPP 2001 HKSEE 2004 is convincing public leaders the

Latino vote matters.

Maria Teresa Kumar, founding president and CEO of Voto Latino—a grassroots political organization focused on educating and engaging Latinx voters—shares her thoughts on growing Latinx voter power.

Maria Teresa Kumar was nine years old when she and her

mother became U.S. citizens. “I remember lifting my right hand at the ceremony

in San Francisco, then going back to school and saying a ‘thank you’ prayer,”

she says. “And my classmates didn’t really get it.” There weren’t many other

immigrants at her Catholic school, and none of her friends seemed to understand

the significance of the step she and her mother had just taken.

This moment—her first political act, she says—stays with her

today. Now, she is the founding president and CEO of the nonpartisan, nonprofit

group Voto Latino, an organization whose mission has expanded significantly

from its roots in 2004 as a get-out-the-vote initiative of MTV. Read more on the HKS website >> 

Teresa Acuña MC/MPA 2017 is focused on providing solutions and

affecting future generations of policymakers.

Teresa Acuna, former associate director of the Democratic Governance program at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, brings her passion for government and her lens as a first-generation Latina to the Harvard Kennedy School.

Teresa Acuña MC/MPA 2017 is passionate about making

democracy work for everyone. That’s why, after graduating from the Kennedy

School with her mid-career masters in 2017, she decided to join the

School's Ash Center for

Democratic Governance and Innovation.

“When I look at what government’s role in society is, I see

it can be either the greatest impediment or the greatest opportunity to help a

generation move forward and achieve,” she says. “I love the potential democracy

offers.” Read more on the HKS website >>