Beatriz is passionate about the law, food and the arts. She was born in Mexico City and grew up in Southern California. From a young age, Beatriz used writing to escape the clash of cultures, religion and values. She now writes memoir, creative non-fiction and poetry on her immigrant experience, cultural identity, gender issues, loss and death. Beatriz witnessed and experienced xenophobia, the criminalization of immigrants, and the policing of Latino youth in her neighborhood. She committed to attending college to make life better for herself, her family and her community. After receiving her B.A. in Politics and Latin American and Latino Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz, she moved to New York on a one-way ticket to pursue her passions. She crashed in friends’ couches, camped out in the Brooklyn Library job searching, found a job as a waitress and eventually a full-time job advocating for youth in family court. Since then, she has worked to provide court-involved youth an alternative to incarceration, bridge the barriers immigrants face in the criminal and immigration systems, make education accessible to adult workers and promote women’s reproductive health. She also stays involved in the community through arts education and community writing workshops. Thanks to her mother’s soul-cooking, Beatriz enjoys cooking up a feast and trying new foods any chance she gets. She plans to attend law school in the future, continue feasting on street food, and building a vibrant community.