PO Box 3023

Poughkeepsie, NY 12603

Tel: 845-332-5386



Gabriela Quintanilla

Gabriela Quintanilla was born in El Salvador, and migrated to the U.S. when she was 13 years old. When she arrived to this country she was faced with the harsh reality of being undocumented. Gabriela experienced many challenges during high school and early college years, luckily she had a great support system that helped her achieve her dreams. She is now a permanent U.S. resident and holds a Bachelors of Arts Degree in Sociology with a Minor in Political Science from SUNY Stony Brook. Throughout her time at Stony Brook, she became involved as a social justice activist and community organizer. During her last year at Stony Brook she realized that she had to do more to help the undocumented student population and that is when ADELANTE was born. Her hope is that Adelante can help undocumented students in rural areas of NY navigate the government systems in order to achieve their goals and build a network of ongoing support amongst the students, allies and staff. Gabriela has helped mobilize rallies in her community, and designed workshops to amplify the voices of undocumented students and farmworkers. She has been featured in two award-winning documentaries: Paper State: Undocumented Unafraid Undeterred, which won best student documentary at Cannes Festival 2013 and Dreamers Among Us. Most recently, she has joined Rural & Migrant Ministry staff as the Coordinator for Western NY. She feels privileged to work alongside with passionate students and youth across the state. She enjoys traveling, exercising, eating healthy and sleeping! She values honesty, transparency, and positivity.

Susie Ximenez

Raised in the Hudson Valley, Susie grew up watching her parents navigate a new language in order to provide a better life for their family. She earned her MFA in Fine Art at Universidad del Claustro de Sor Juana, and eventually moved back to New York to raise her daughter. Susie worked in retail for 10 years before feeling the urgent call to found Latinx in 2017, her organization to strengthen the Latinx community through art and community. Susie hopes to combat the stigma behind being undocumented while bridging the gap between the Latinx community and the places they live.

Alicia Lewis

Alicia emigrated with her family from Trinidad to the United States when she was 7 years-old. Since then she’s lived in New York City and is a proud Bronxite. She graduated from Vassar College in 2018, having majored in Biology and minored in Victorian Studies. Throughout her four years at Vassar, Alicia was involved in the Transitions program for students identifying as first-generation, low-income, and/or undocumented. She has also been the head mentor of Vassar’s Questbridge Chapter and a member of the Caribbean Students Alliance. Alicia began working with Adelante during her senior year of college. She is very passionate about working with students from immigrant backgrounds and creating more opportunities for them to succeed. Her primary role on the planning committee involves allocating resources to support undocumented students as they navigate higher education and personal development. 

Roberto Muller

Roberto Muller lives in Cold Spring, NY, and works as a community educator on climate change and sustainability. He is also a high school soccer coach, musician, and student of physical and emotional therapy and mediation. Roberto is passionate about the struggle of undocumented immigrants because he feels that they, much like US citizens and residents whose jobs have been outsourced overseas over the past three decades, are disproportionately victimized by neoliberal globalization and free-trade treaties. Roberto is committed to helping people bring such stories to light.

Renata Saldaña

Renata Saldaña is from Ecuador. At 10 years old her parents left in search of the "American Dream." It was through that process she learned the difficulty and risk that people live because they were born in a country without opportunities. When she was 17 years old, she also experienced the harsh reality of leaving everything behind and looking for a new beginning. Participating in Adelante showed her that she is not alone in this process, and in 2018 she won the Multicultural High School Achievers Award from the University of Albany, leaving a message of hope and love for her culture. That gave her the strength to be the voice of all those who are like her, because they also came to a different country, with a different language—people who only want a better future without forgetting their roots, people who face the reality of racism, people who want to be part of the change. 1 Corinthians 15:58

Katia Yagnik

Katia is an Admissions and Financial Aid Counselor at Finger Lakes Community College. Prior, she worked as the Education Coordinator at Rural & Migrant Ministry where she counseled members of the three youth empowerment programs on career and college planning. Katia helps on the planning committee of ADELANTE by helping contact potential funders, and by offering college prep assistance during the sessions and as a network mentor. She also works with partner colleges and institutional systems to assess best practices to ensure equity and inclusion for all applicants and students.

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© 2020 by Rural & Migrant Ministry, Inc.




PO Box 3023, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603