Mission & History
Voto Latino is a pioneering civic media organization that seeks to transform America by recognizing Latinos’ innate leadership. Through innovative digital campaigns, pop culture, and grassroots voices, we provide culturally relevant programs that engage, educate and empower Latinos to be agents of change. Together, we aim to build a stronger and more inclusive democracy.
A Note From
María Teresa Kumar
President & CEORead Note
It’s hard to imagine an America without Latinos. At Voto Latino, we are fundamentally aware that you – our community — are the new builders and makers in this country. But to do all you can do, there has to be some level of access and opportunity. This is why VL exists: to give you a roadmap for how to become leaders, educators, entrepreneurs, and really anything else you deem possible.
It’s true, that in the beginning, our core work was around voter registration. This was largely because it was, and remains, a key way to show our community’s strength. But since our founding by Rosario Dawson in 2004, we’ve expanded our programs from civic engagement to include leadership development and issue advocacy. Together, we have registered over a quarter million voters, innovated the use of voter registration through text messaging, helped our community be counted in the US Census, and co-founded National Voter Registration Day. We’ve also started the VL Power Summit conference to bring young people together with key leaders, and have given away half a million dollars to young Latino innovators.
Our work has received numerous awards, and while the accolades are nice – it’s the rise of the American Latino voice and how it will shape our country’s future that keeps us excited and invested.
The best part, I think, is that we’re just getting started. The next ten years of work is even more paramount to our shared future. I encourage you to join us. It doesn’t take much, but it does require that you show up. Start by signing up for our email newsletter here to learn about ways you can participate. Not for us, but for you and for the loved ones who have brought you this far.
María Teresa Kumar
President & CEO
In 2004 Voto Latino was simply an idea based on the state of our community as it was, but also as it could be. I envisioned reaching out to other people like me by leveraging the latest technology, media, social networks and high-profile artists to get them involved in the civic process.
Plenty of people thought we were nuts. Social media and texting were in the early stages, no one was talking about the Latino vote, let alone Millennials, and we were reaching out to our audience in English. But we rolled the dice and — with the help of thousands of volunteers, partners and supporters – American Latinos heard the calling.
We have accomplished a lot because you have shown up. But we’re hardly done. So if you haven’t joined the Voto Latino familia yet, today is the day. Follow us on social media and signup for our email newsletter here to get updates on how to get involved. Because the simple truth is that without you there is no Voto Latino.
Co-Founder & Chairwoman
We Need Your Help
Help us provide more young Latinos the tools to become agents of change.
In 2004, Voto Latino began as a PSA project organized by co-founder Rosario Dawson. Over the years we’ve evolved into an organization dedicated to providing young Latinos the tools to create a future of their choosing. Check out what that history looks like below: