SERES Staff

Corrina Grace
Executive Director

Corrina is the Founder and Executive Director of SERES, a role which has allowed her to facilitate transformative programs for more than 1,500 young people – engaging and empowering them to take action and accelerate the transition towards sustainability in this region. Corrina’s goal is to turn SERES into a name synonymous with sustainable, thriving, resilient communities around the world. A mechanical engineer, Corrina’s skills and experience range from consulting engineering to expertise in the financial and private sectors, offshore work with Engineers Without Borders, project and construction management and transformative leadership and facilitation. Corrina holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of New South Wales, Sydney. She was one of 50 selected youth participants at the UNESCO World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development and is a Fellow of the 10th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.

 

Antonio Cruz Sánchez
Co-founder, El Salvadorean Coordinator, Senior Facilitator

Antonio was born in a remote rural community in El Salvador and in 2009 after meeting SERES Co-founder Corrina Grace he started a life journey of reshaping the development paradigm in the region under the name of SERES.  Antonio runs all of the SERES programs in El Salvador and has facilitated hundreds of environmental leadership processes with youth from both his country and Guatemala.  His passion is sharing empowering opportunities for youth to build realities of prosperity, hope and abundance that can stop the migration needs of Central American youth to the U.S. – one of El Salvador most pressing crisis.

 

 

197772b81e2e14fa5b8f991989ac4bc7Sara Hurtarte
Director of Programs and Operations

Before joining SERES, Sara worked with the Guatemalan Government developing and coordinating social programs for youth. She has also developed an entrepreneurial program with women from Guatemala City’s municipality landfill, teaching them how to produce jewelry from recycled materials. Sara holds a Master’s degree in public policy and management from Carnegie Mellon University, Australia and was published by the Australian and New Zealand School of Government for her case study on teenage pregnancies and violence against women in Guatemala.  Sara joined SERES in 2016, and her passion is to empower youth to become active leaders in their community.

 

Abigail Quic
Senior Facilitator, Guatemalan Coordinator

Abigail Tan Kulax (Nicolasa) is Maya Tz’utujil from San Juan la Laguna, Atitlan and understands Tz’utujil, Kakchiquel, Quiche, Spanish and English. While studying Sustainable Tourism, Abigail realized the importance of preserving and protecting the incredible wealth of natural and cultural resources in her community and across the country. Since 2007, Abigail has been involved in facilitating both formal and informal environmental education processes with youth and children from her community. In 2011 she discovered SERES, along with her own power to create an even greater impact in her country. In 2013 Abigail joined the SERES team, where she has facilitated transformative change processes with hundreds of youth from Guatemala and El Salvador.

 

Jennifer Argueta
SERES Fundraising and Development Officer

An International Relations graduate of Michigan State University’s James Madison College, Jennifer has fundraised for over 20 years and has worked for the Futuro Media Group, the American Academy in Rome, The White House, The US Embassy to the Vatican, as well as for numerous elected officials. At the Futuro Media Group she raised more than $6,000,000 in three years and grew their monthly sustainer program by over 233% in less than six months. While at the Academy, she helped raise $70 million dollars for a comprehensive campaign and was in charge of their spring gala her final two years; the New York galas raised more than $1 million dollars annually. She is very excited to use her skills to help SERES grow and diversify its funding. If you are reading this, she asks that you consider supporting SERES with an annual gift by clicking THIS LINK.  Your tax deductible gift will make a significant difference to the organization. Thanks!

 

Luisa Paz
SERES Administrator

Luisa Paz is Guatemalan and holds a Bachelor degree in Business Administration and a postgraduate degree in Human Resources. She has a wide experience in working in profit and not-for-profit organizations, particularly in improving administrative processes for efficient resource management.  She joined SERES in February 2015 and is passionate about youth awareness and education, as she has witnessed how this enables them to be leaders and change agents working to develop healthier lives and communities.

 

 

Dora Patricia Pérez
SERES Accountant

Dora Patricia Pérez was born in Antigua, Guatemala, and later moved to the nearby town of Jocotenango. She studied Auditing and Public Accounting at the Universidad de San Carlos de Guatemala. Before joining the SERES team, Dora’s work experience was related to the artisanal sector. What she enjoys most and believes is unique about the work of SERES is to be able to see the faces of the youth leaders who participate in the programs, and know that she is part of a team that transforms and makes an impact.

 

 

 

 

Rocío Fuentes
Youth Facilitator, El Salvador

Rocío Fuentes was born and raised in San Salvador, El Salvador. She graduated with a Master’s Degree in Modern Languages at University of El Salvador in June, 2013 and has a Specialization in Translation and Interpretation from Universidad Evangélica de El Salvador. Currently she is studying a Master’s Degree in Psychology at University of El Salvador and hopes to have her PhD in Sexology by 2020. She speaks 4 languages: English, Portuguese, French and Spanish and she loves to work with youth and help them to deconstruct patterns and cultural systems. She strongly believes that all major decisions are led by young people and that their role is fundamental to El Salvador’s development. Her areas of expertise are oral expression, speeches and how to use rhetoric to implement projects in communities. She is also a street activist and fights for LGBTI and women’s rights. Rocío is happy to be part of our team and her journey with us has brought her tons of smiles, new friends and a lot of learning.

 

Susana Lisseth Ruiz Diaz
Youth Facilitator, El Salvador

After a number of years actively involved in the SERES youth network, in 2015 Susana was selected for a 9-month Fellowship with SERES, and  elected by the youth members of Asociación SERES as the Youth Ambassador Representative for El Salvador, 2015.

After successfully completing both of these leadership roles, and launching SERES’s new Ambassadors program, Susana joined the team in El Salvador. Passionate and dedicated, Susana continues to help strengthen the Local Ambassador program, and create empowering opportunities for youth to build resilient communities in El Salvador and Guatemala. She is passionate about helping people live better and using deep local organization and systemic social change to cultivate sustainability.

 

Esteban Maldonado
Youth Facilitator, Guatemala  

Esteban is a Maya Quiché young man from the Guatemalan Highlands. As with Susana, Esteban is an incredible role model and active champion of the strength and impact of SERES’ programs. Shortly after discovering SERES, Esteban was elected deputy mayor for Chuisuc, where he worked towards strengthening the local organization, particularly among youth. After an accelerated progression through the leadership series, in 2015 Esteban was selected for a 9-month Fellowship with SERES and also elected by the youth members of Asociación SERES as the Youth Ambassador Representative for Guatemala, 2015.

After graduating, Esteban joined the SERES team as a facilitator and organizer. In addition to this role, he is also the President of the Permanent Council for the Defense of Life and Territory of Cantel, Quetzaltenango. He coordinates the Council, prepares strategies, and collaborates in the public policy making that can assure good living conditions for the population. His passion and interest are civil organization and politics, and he brings his considerable experience of grassroots organizing and leadership to the team.

 

Glenda Xulú
Youth Facilitator, Guatemala

Xa kan jun q’opoj,  ri kan janila nink’asäs ruk’u’x toq nutz’et chi ri ak’wala’, alab’o, xtani’, ri achin, ri ixoq, ri te’ej, ri tata’aj, ri ati’t, ri mama’, nikijel ri kina’oj, ri kik’aslemal richin nikichajij, nikajo’, nikiwoq’omaj  ri qate’ ruwach’ulew.

Glenda Marisol Xulú, born in Pasum (Patzún, place where the most beautiful sunflowers are found), in the date of the Mayan calendar: Kab’lajuj Q’anil (August 22) in 1991. She is a certified teacher in Primary bilingual, intercultural education, and is currently studying for a “profesorado” in the teaching of Media and Information at the Universidad Galileo. She has had the opportunity to work with children, youth, women, and local authorities en topics such as education, nutrition, empowerment, and sustainable agriculture. Over the course of the years and her various experiences, she has found her passion, which is to help, to activate, and to empower people of different ages so that they can be actors and leaders for changes in their communities. She has facilitated formative and educational processes with different topics with social, political, and environmental subject matter in order to transformer thoughts with the seed of change, thereby constructing a more equal and resilient community and country.

Glenda joined the SERES team in January 2016, and from then on has put her heart into all that she does. She facilitates many of the Actívate congresses, which is the first step in SERES programs which seeks to awaken critical thinking in youth, as they work to create action plans for personal changes and bigger changes in their community.

In her free time, she likes to do different activities, among them thinking through sports, reflecting, and learning through reading and visual media.

Juan Pablo Sic
Youth Facilitator, Community Manager

Juan Pablo Sic is a young Maya K’iche’ leader who was born and raised in San Miguel Uspantán, Quiché, where he studied his degree in primary education. Now he is a student in Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at the University of Rafael Landívar, and is a member of the movement Divergencia Colectiva in Antigua, Guatemala. He began participating in SERES in 2015 in the JLP community congresses. The time and lived experiences have taught him that young people are able to lead great, transformative movements from the personal level in their homes, to the systemic level in their communities.

Because ideas, feeling and thinking, should endure throughout time, in his current role as SERES Community Manager, Juan Pablo seeks to weave together the experiences of the youth in Guatemala and El Salvador through words and texts.

Although he currently lives in Jocotenango, Scatepéquez, he dreams of returning to his community in order to put into practice the knowledge and skills of sustainable agriculture, and live in harmony with nature.

 

Emily Neil
Communications Officer

Emily was born and raised in Baltimore, MD, U.S.A. She graduated with a Master’s of Science from Columbia Journalism School in May 2016, and with a B.A. in Middle Eastern studies from Barnard College in 2014. Emily loves working with all of the inspiring youth leaders and team members at SERES, and believes in the power of youth leadership to re-shape our collective narratives about environmental and social justice. She is dedicated to improving her knowledge of Spanish, and understanding how and for what purpose we tell stories in various mediums throughout the globe, and how more youth can use their voices to shape those stories.