Yara Lorenzo - March 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Hometown: Miami, FL
Current Job: Associate at Hogan Lovells US LLP, in Miami, Florida
CHCI Program: CHCI Internship, 2003
CHCI Program Placement: Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen’s office
What have you been doing since you finished the CHCI program(s)?
Since finishing the program, I graduated from Brown University with a degree in political science/ethnic studies. I went immediately to work for Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen on Capitol Hill. After that, I attended law school and graduated in 2009. I was lucky to clerk for two senior judges in South Florida. I completed a two-year district clerkship with the Honorable James L. King and a one year Circuit Clerkship with the Honorable Peter T. Fay. Last September, I began as an associate at Hogan Lovells, an international law firm with offices in over 22 countries. I focus on litigation and arbitration of international disputes and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Investigations.
What impact did your CHCI experience have on your career and development as a leader?
CHCI did two key things for me. First, it opened my eyes to how truly important Hispanics are to the future of this country. There is immense potential and opportunity for us to get involved and make a difference and CHCI gave me the tools to understand how to do that. Second, I learned that it is possible to work through our differences as Hispanics, to focus on the issues we need to address. As a class we engaged in thought provoking discussion. It gave me great hope for the future.
How have you stayed engaged in community service?
Throughout the years I have been active in various organizations. I serve as a Guardian Ad Litem for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in Florida, representing the best interest of my clients, who are children in the foster care system. I serve as a marathon-training coach for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, training runners who agree to raise money for cancer research to run marathons. I helped start City Year Miami’s Young Professional Ambassador’s program, taking it from 18 Ambassadors in its first year to 80 during its second year. Most recently, I was elected to the Board of Directors of the Cuban American Bar Association, which is the largest minority bar associate in the state of Florida. In that capacity, I oversee CABA’s 501(c)(3), which is a Pro Bono Project. Through our Pro Bono Project, in 2012 we closed out over 500 cases, providing legal services to those who fall 125% below the poverty line. In other words, the people who need it the most. This is by far the most rewarding thing I do, because every single day I know we are helping people who could otherwise not afford legal services. In an effort to make-up for slashes in government funding across the board to legal aid programs, last year I co-founded a 5K Run, “Lawyers on the Run,” in order to raise money and awareness of the role we play in the community. It was a great success and we’re already planning our second annual run.
What advice would you give current and future CHCI participants?
First, there is no substitute for hard work. I work most weekends and gladly so. It’s the only way to cease all the opportunities that God has blessed me with. Second, pay it forward. Each time I sit down with a mentor or anyone offering me advice, I am beyond grateful for their time. In return, I make sure to sit down with someone who can benefit from my experiences. It’s not easy to fit it all in, but mentoring formally and informally is not something I sacrifice. Finally, make the most of your time in D.C. Meet and connect with as many people as possible. You can sleep when the summer comes to an end!
Where do you see yourself in the next 5-10 years?
In 5-10 years, I would like to be a partner at my firm. In my view, to make partner means you’re regarded as an exceptional attorney and someone who represents the ideals and values of the organization. As a woman of color, I hope to serve as an example for other young women who are making their way up the ranks. Eventually, I hope my career brings me back to where I started: public service. Until then, I will continue to be civically engaged, while developing my practice. As one of my mentors from Brown University, Salvador Mena would say, “I am living the dream.”
Past Alumni of the Month
Miguel A. Blancarte, Jr. - March 2015 Alumni of the Month
Martha L. Bahamón - February 2015 Alumni of the Month
2013-14 CHCI Alumni Executive Board - January 2015 Alumni of the Month
Mariana Kihuen - December 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Henry Fernandez - November 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Ricardo Zavala - September 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Miryam Catherine Granthon-Gerdine - August 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Angelica Reza Wind - July 2014 Alumna of the Month
Ray Mateo - June 2014 Alumni of the Month
Hayde Calderon - May 2014 Alumni of the Month
Arnoldo Avalos - April 2014 Alumni of the Month
Elizabeth Cedillo - March 2014 Alumni of the Month
Marvin Figueroa - February 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Cris Garza - January 2014 Alumnus of the Month
Jaden Felix - December 2013 Alumni of the Month
2013 Distinguished Alumni - October/November 2013 Alumni of the Month
Fabiola Carrion - September 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Juan C. Otero- August 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Norma Dominguez - July 2013 Alumni of the Month
Francisco Heredia - June 2013 - Alumnus of the Month
Raymond Rico - May 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Alejandra Castillo - April 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Yara Lorenzo - March 2013 Alumnus of the Month
Antonio E. Sandoval & Milagros “Mimi” Aledo-Sandoval - Alumni Couple of the Month
Abel Herrero - January 2013
Jessie Mosqueda - December 2012
Kenia Seoane Lopez - CHCI Alumnus November 2012
Hon. Liza Rodriguez - 2012 Distinguished Alumnus & October 2012 Alumnus
Melissa Chabran - CHCI Alumnus June 2012
Jessie Ulibarri - CHCI Alumnus May 2012
Congressional Staff-CHCI Alumni April 2012
Anthony Alcoser-CHCI Alumnus March 2012
Diana Mendoza-CHCI Alumnus February 2012
Betsaida Alcantara-CHCI Alumnus December 2011
Orson Aguilar - CHCI 2011 Distinguished Alumnus & September 2011 Alumnus
Cynthia T. Cruz-CHCI Alumnus August 2011
Miguel Lopez - CHCI Alumnus July 2011
Alejandro Becerra - CHCI Alumnus June 2011
Staff Members for the Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy - CHCI Alumnus May 2011
Happy 30th Anniversary CHCI Fellowship Program!
Raul Magdaleno - CHCI Alumnus March 2011
Carlos Elizondo -- CHCI Alumnus December 2010
Ana M. Polanco -- CHCI Alumnus April 2010
Sami Hamed -- CHCI Alumnus March 2010
Couple Edition -- CHCI Alumnus February 2010
CHCI Alumni Association Chapters' Special Edition - October 2009
Edith Rocío Robles -- CHCI Alumnus August 2009
Silvia Inéz Salazar--CHCI Alumnus July 2009
Francisco J. Uribe CHCI Alumnus June 2009
Heidy Servin-Baez CHCI Alumnus April 2009
March 2009: White House Edition
William (Bill) Arce CHCI Alumnus February 2009
Stephanie Valencia CHCI Alumnus January 2009
Miguel Ayala CHCI Alumnus December 2008
Eric Rodriguez-CHCI Alumnus November 2008
Sonia Ramirez CHCI Alumnus October 2008
Mildred Otero CHCI Alumnus September 2008
Juan Ciscomani CHCI Alumus August 2008
Leo Prieto CHCI Alumnus July 2008
Octavio Saenz CHCI Alumnus June 2008