Hispanic Heritage Month Panel
In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, Radio Catskill’s The Local Edition hosted a panel on Monday, Oct 4th, to delve deeper into the issues concerning the Latinx community.
Juanita Sarmiento – Rural Migrant Ministry
Sandra Cuellar Oxford – Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation Director
Heily Flores – Sullivan County Black Latino Asian Caucus
Pedro Tweed – Author, Actor, Gymnastic and Martial Arts Coach
Listen to the full episode here:
Catskill Regional Coordinator, Rural & Migrant Ministry
Juanita Sarmiento is the Catskill Regional Coordinator in Sullivan County, NY, an economically depressed community with some of the highest poverty indicators in New York State. Born in Colombia and raised in Sullivan County, NY. Juanita earned her bachelor’s degree from the Rochester Institute of Technology. She began her work with RMM as a Fellow with the Youth Economic Group (YEG), ultimately becoming the YEG Coordinator before being promoted to her current role. She has been instrumental in the leadership development of YEG students and the geographically isolated and marginalized members of the Sullivan County rural community.
Sandra Cuellar Oxford
Director, Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation, New York State AFL-CIO
Sandra Cuellar Oxford is the Hudson Valley Area Labor Federation Director. She was born and raised in New York City, and has lived in Ulster and Sullivan counties for the past 33 years. After relocating to a farm in Modena, NY in 1988, she was confronted with the harsh, brutal and unfair conditions NYS farmworkers faced and developed her determination to become an advocate for workers’ rights. Her fifteen years of service to the labor movement include, Political Liaison of UFCW Local 888, representative work and development of leadership and service the Local’s Health Care and Professional Division. Sandra’s appointment to various governmental boards and her volunteer service on numerous not-for-profit boards dedicated to health, legal representation for the indigent, youth services, and immigrant advocacy spans two decades.
Head, Sullivan County Black Latino Asian Caucus
Vice-chair, Sullivan County Young Democrats
Heily Flores is the head of the Sullivan County Black Latino Asian Caucus, the Vice-chair of the Sullivan County Young Democrats, and a long-time Sullivan county resident. She emigrated from Puerto Rico to the United States with her family in 1991. Her dad, a Puerto Rican, and her mom, a Dominican, decided to pursue the “American Dream” in hopes for a better future for their children. Heily is currently continuing her education in sociology, so she can represent her community by making changes in public policies and increase the visibility of migrants and undocumented people in her community.
Author, Owner of Tweed’s Gymnastics, and Co-Host of Tweed Talks
Pedro Tweed is an author, the owner of Tweed’s Gymnastics, and the co-host of Tweed Talks. He emigrated to the United States from the Dominican Republic as a child and moved to Sullivan County in 1974 and is the former Director of the Village of Monticello Parks and Recreation Department. He became an inspirational and assault prevention speaker and is a recipient of the Community Service Award from the NAACP for his continued years of community service. In his book, ‘Freeway (Finding Room Enough To Evaluate Who You Are)’, Pedro shares his philosophy about life in order to encourage and uplift others.