August 2016 Quarterly Newsletter

Quarterly Newsletter of the

Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program

Paso del Norte Learning Tour

The Paso del Norte region, an area that includes Las Cruces, NM, El Paso, TX and Juarez, Mexico is one of the most misrepresented areas in the country. This important border crossing accounts for 91 billion dollars of trade between the US and Mexico and El Paso has garnered safest city with a population over half a million in the United States five years running. Juarez boasts a crime rate below that of Chicago. Additionally, the area is of critical importance to the economy of the United States—it is the 10th largest manufacturing hub in North America. Yet, the region continues to be dogged by fears of violence on the border and exaggerated claims of terrorism and insecurity.

In reality, the Paso del Norte region represents a resilient and successful bi-national, bi-lingual, bi-cultural community which is also 85% Hispanic. As our country’s Hispanic population increases, our program aims to demonstrate how other communities have managed such a transition. In follow-up to a June 2015 tour for a group of journalists, the Latinos and Society Program brought a group of 11 influencers from business, non-profit, and public sectors to experience an immersive learning tour from April 4-7, 2016.

Participants visited both sides of the border, El Paso and Juarez, to meet with leaders, innovators, and change-makers who are addressing the region’s challenges and fostering innovation and progress through a unique regional approach. Through this tour, the group saw firsthand how the citizens of El Paso and Juarez are taking matters into their own hands to move their cities and communities forward through collaboration.

Unlocking Latino Civic Potential

The Unlocking Latinos Civic Potential: 2016 and Beyond report culminated from an August 2015 convening on the same topic held in Aspen, Colorado. The report fleshes out recommendations and big ideas identified by participants in four key priority areas important to advancing the field: immigrant integration and naturalization, civic education, the leadership pipeline, and voter engagement. Participants included a diverse group of youth, funder, academic, advocacy, and civil society organizations.

The report launch event, which took place on January 27, 2016 with nearly 100 guests, featured Monica Lozano as moderator and speakers Arturo Vargas, Executive Director, NALEO Educational Fund; Cristina Jiménez, Co-founder and Managing Director, United We Dream; Joshua W. Hoyt, Executive Director, National Partnerships for New Americans; and Luis R. Fraga, Co-Director of the Institute for Latino Studies, Professor of Political Science, University of Notre Dame. A link to the recorded discussion and an electronic version of the Unlocking Latino Civic Potential: 2016 and Beyond report can be found on our website.

Miami Regional Engagement Tour

In February, Monica Lozano, Chair, Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program and Abigail Golden-Vazquez, Executive Director, Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program, travelled to Miami, FL to hear from and meet with key stakeholders in the Latino Community. Over two days of meetings and a formal reception, they introduced the Aspen Institute Latinos and Society program and listened to local community leaders discuss their priorities. They also shared ways to partner and increase engagement with the Aspen Institute. We want to extend a very deep note of gratitude to Cesar Conde, Chairman, NBCUniversal International Group and NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises, and their team for their partnership in making the program possible.

Upcoming Events

August 16

America’s Future Summit: Reimagining Opportunity in a Changing Nation
Los Angeles, CA

For more information or to explore how to become a sponsor, contact [email protected]

Around Aspen

The Latinos and Society Program wants to see you at Aspen Institute programs and events! For more information, visit the Aspen Institute website or contact Haili Lewis. See highlighted upcoming opportunities at the end of the newsletter.

About our Program

The Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program (AILAS) is a policy program committed to increasing the understanding of, and improve outcomes for, the growing US Latino population and therefore, the nation. AILAS convenes meaningful dialogues among cross-sections of society with the goal of influencing more informed decision making, contributes to public awareness of Latino issues as America’s issues, infuses the work of the Aspen Institute with Latino voices, faces and ideas, and develops Latino leadership capacity and networks.

Read the Report!

Be sure to read our new report Unlocking Latino Civic Potential in 2016 and Beyond by visiting our website.

[email protected]

Our team gave a “Hispanics 101” presentation to over 30 Aspen Institute colleagues followed by a Q&A and discussion, including ways to continue increasing Latino voices and perspectives throughout the Aspen Institute. We look forward to engaging you in the Aspen Institute in the future!

We’re on Twitter!

We want to communicate with you year round! Be sure to follow us on Twitter at @AspenLatinos for updates on our program and to participate in important conversations.


To contact our team, email [email protected] or call 202-736-2903.

Upcoming Aspen Institute Events

It’s been a year since the release of the seminal Aspen Institute report, Sport for All, Play for Life: A Playbook to Get Every Kid in the Game, and many organizations have taken action consistent with its eight strategies for the eight sectors that touch the lives of children. At the 2016 Project Play Summit, meet leaders of these efforts and discover opportunities to build healthy communities through sport. Registration is now open.


The Aspen Institute Socrates Program invites you to join us for any of our upcoming seminar weekends in Aspen, Serbia and Spain for learning, professional development and outdoor activities with an extraordinary network of global emerging leaders.

Socrates Summer Seminars
July 8-11, 2016
Aspen, Colorado

The Aspen Institute’s Socrates Program invites you to celebrate our 20 year anniversary in Aspen, July 8-11, for our summer seminars. We have an exciting selection of five expert-moderated seminars available. Registration is now open, and we encourage first-time participants to apply for scholarship tuition assistance.

Please register today!

We also invite you to join us for the Socrates 20th Anniversary Annual Dinner on Saturday, July 9, honoring Thomas and Ann Friedman and featuring a discussion with Thomas Friedman. Summer Socrates participants may purchase discounted dinner tickets as part of their registration.

Socrates Summer Seminar Details

The seminar fee is $1950, which includes tuition, seminar readings, and all meals, except for the Socrates Annual Dinner, throughout the weekend. Lodging is not included in the fee, but may be booked at the Aspen Meadows through online registration. Travel costs are not included, however discounted rates may be booked through Nancy Costanzo at Connoisseur Travel ([email protected], 202-469-8990). Tuition scholarship assistance for those attending Socrates for the first time is available by application through the online registration process. For more information, visit our website or contact Dana Hall, 202-736-3517 or Jennifer Serfass 202-736-3550.