Western WA Coordinator
Monserrat Padilla has been organizing LGBTQ, immigrant and communities of color on the ground for over 10 years to build collective movement power. She was a co-founder of the Washington Dream Coalition and has led national & statewide campaigns, including the victory on the Washington State Dream Act to expand eligibility for state aid in higher education.
Monserrat worked as a the National Program Coordinator for the Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project, a program of United We Dream, where she worked across the country building a national network of LGBTQ immigrant community leaders, advocates and organizers to develop policies and advocate addressing the needs of LGBTQ immigrant communities.
Monserrat was born in Tonalá, Jalisco, Mexico. At the age of 2 she migrated to the U.S. with her mother and two older siblings. She grew up in East Los Angeles, CA where she became part of the 11 million undocumented families living in the U.S. At the age of 15 she moved to Seattle, Washington, graduating from Chief Sealth International High School in 2010 and attending the University of Washington in Seattle.
Eastern WA Coordinator
Brenda Rodríguez’s role in WAISN is to build and support communities fighting to defend immigrant rights in Central and Eastern WA. She is based in Wenatchee.
Brenda earned a Bachelor’s Degree at Washington State University, double majored in Spanish and Women’s Studies with a minor in Comparative Ethnic Studies. She was born in Mexico City and arrived in the United States at the age of nine. Reuniting with her migrant working family here, she grew up in Basin City, Washington.
During her first semester at WSU in 2016, the Republican club in her campus put up a wall in support of Trump’s campaign. She vividly remembers feeling “infuriated and disappointed by the institution for allowing such an offensive demonstration to be displayed”. At that moment she decided to take action and joined Crimson Group the following semester. Since then, she has been fiercely fighting for a Clean DREAM Act and for resources for undocumented students on her campus. Brenda has been organizing immigrant youth in her campus, and region for years. She has been to Washington, DC, twice to advocate in person for the Dream Act, and has put her body on the line to pressure Congress to take action.
Summer 2018 Fellows