Thank you for your support on the
Young Women's STEAM Research & Preparatory Academy
Inaugural Women's Conference held on
April 10, 2021.
This event was hosted virtually by our Warrior High Student Council and was open to all ages, all genders, and all those who support our future female leaders! Our student team sought out various women who have stories to share on how they overcame challenges to become recognized as change-makers in their career fields and communities. Four speakers generously accepted our request to represent the female role in the highest capacity. We were so excited for them to share their stories and positive messages on the theme of
"Be-YOU-tiful: Wellness & Positive Mindset" chosen by our Warrior students.
Your participation in the first ever YWA Women's Conference helped to generate income for our Warrior Student Council Program. This program seeks to represent the entire YWA student body and their families. As a new school in the EPISD distict, is it our desire to connect events and programs to the greater El Paso area as our students attend YWA from all over the county. We are excited to have our first graduating class in 2023, launching our Warrior Change-Makers! We appreciate your participation and generosity to help the Warrior Student Council provide leadership opportunities, sprinkled in with fun and entertaining events that help solidify our Warrior Sisterhood from grades 6-12.
Read further on this exciting event from Renee de Santos, Community Engagement with EPISD
Meet our Change-Makers!
Crystal Ponzio-Busto: Marketing Director for Netflix
Crystal Ponzio-Busto, is a creative marketer who has spent the last eight years at Netflix, working across Original Film, Global Brand and International Marketing. Prior to that, she helped launch rival streamer, Hulu's first orginal series as the company's first dedicated content marketing hire. Having also held digital marketing posts at IFC and brand agency Wieden + Kennedy in NYC in the mid 2000's, her sights has always been set on being part of what is next in the industry.
She first become a movie marketing enthusiast during the summer of 1993 where she saw Jurassic Park in every book store, light box, theater lobby and on every Slurpee, lunchbox, and Happy Meal in sight. After attending the 8:30am, showing on June 11, she returned every week that summer and ended up at the movie theater 21 times to watch and re-watch. You could say she is a movie marketer, 28 years in the making!
She grew up in the border town of El Paso, Texas and a proud graduate of Boston University and the very proud product of public schooling and generous mentoring.
Alejandra (Alex) Baca-Rodriguez:
Founder & Editor-in-Chief of Belle The Magazine
Alejandra (Alex) Baca-Rodriguez is the Founder and Editor-In-Chief of the award winning wedding blog, Belle The Magazine and a social media marketing educator specializing in Pinterest.
Alejandra is a multi-passionate creative professional with a love for and focus on the wedding industry where she has more than 15 years of experience. She is the go-to wedding expert for bridal fashion, social media, and digital marketing. She attends Bridal Fashion Week every year to preview the new designs from international bridal designers from all around the world.
Alex has worked with brands such as Macy's, Bed Bath & Beyond, Colgate, Dove, Westin Hotels, Disney, Crate & Barrel, and many more.
She is a proud Latina and champion of the LatinX Event Industry. She is a committee member at the National Bridal Council, the National Events Council, and The Knot's Fellowship of Change. She has contributed her wedding and marketing expertise with some of the biggest national wedding media outlets.
She is orginally from Chihuahua, Mexico and moved to the US 20 years ago to attend college. She received a BA degree with a double major in Marketing and International Business with a minor in French from UTEP. She was fortunate enough to travel around the world during her college years and settled down 15 years ago in El Paso with her husband and three boys plus four dogs.
Georgina Cecilia Perez:
Democratic member of the Texas State Board of Education
Georgina Cecila Perez is a Democratic member of the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE), representing El Paso adn the greater West Texas region. Perez served as chair of the School Policing Committee for the Biden-Harris 2020 presidential campaign, developing education policy focused on equity and access for marginalized students of color.
Born in El Paso, Texas, Perez spent her childhood bouncing between homes and schools. After facing exploitation as a young woman, Perez found refuge in books. Reading provided a lifesaving escape from the trauma of everyday life and served as the foundation of her lifelong devotion to education. Driven by that devotion, Perez led the historic adoption of both Mexican-American Studies and African-American Studies as statewide courses.
A passionat advocate for literacy, she has worked to coordinate the "Tu Libro'program, which has distributed more than 500,000 books to students who live in rural and impoverished communities in El Paso County that lack regualr access to public libraries. Perez is the author of "Unity Framework: Critial Literacy Lessons" and "Women of the Americas: A Teatro", and the founder of both the Rural Schools of Education program, and Texas Student Civic Engagement Project.
Iris Lopez, Founder/Executive Director of Mija, Yes You Can,
Content Coordinator/Social Media Strategist
Iris Lopez was born and raised in El Paso, Texas. She graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso with a Minor in Spanish and a Major in Multimedia Journalism.
She began her broadcasting career in radio as "Lily Lopez" on 104.3 Hitfm in El Paso, Texas. Iris then made the move to TV news where she is currently a general assignments reporter, weekend evening weather anchor, and proud creator of the on-air franchise, "KVIA Sunday Funday Moments".
Iris' passion for empowering wormen was instilled in her at a young age by her parents, aunts, and grandmothers. Her passion grew even stronger after the relationships she developed with other young female broadcasters who were struggling to find a voice in a male dominated business.
Iris' passion to inspire and motivate others is due in large part to her 10-year old son, Jacob. For Iris, being a mom is one of the greatest accomplishments she has achieved and it is what continues to motivate her to inspire our youth. Email Iris at firstname.lastname@example.org.