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Leader No. 3: Norma Rodriguez Helps Others ‘Advocate for Themselves, Community’

Daughter, 29, of Central Valley farmworker said she was angered by witnessing injustice.

Norma Rodriguez said she got into the role of community work "organically."

Rodriquez—who is 29 and an organizer for the nonprofit advocacy group Center on Policy Initiatives—said having a father who was a farmworker in the Central Valley made her aware of discrimination.

"I was angry at seeing injustice," said Rodriguez, inspired by her parents to pursue "social justice."

  • "I love seeing folks go from being afraid to advocate for themselves and their community and then take ownership and be unafraid to speak and educate others."

Advice for young people:

"Talk to people—don’t be afraid to ask questions. I would also suggest interning at various organizations that interest you—nonprofits are always looking for volunteers and will be glad to have your help. Most importantly, don’t forget to pay it forward."

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