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Changing the World One Community at a Time: Eloise S. Cofer Family Living Lecture Series presents Carmen Yulín Cruz

January 18 | 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm EST

Carmen Yulin Cruz

Join the Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences (AHS) for the Eloise S. Cofer Family Living Lecture Series featuring Carmen Yulín Cruz.

When Hurricane Maria devastated San Juan, Puerto Rico in 2017, Carmen Yulín Cruz was on the front lines as the city’s 2.3 million residents responded to the devastation which rippled beyond physical destruction to financial, political, and humanitarian ruins.

Cruz, who was mayor of San Juan for 8 years, now works with universities and non-governmental organizations to advocate for crisis response on a community level. On January 18, she will speak at NC State University as the 2024 Eloise S. Cofer Family Living Lecture Series. Anchored around themes of community engagement and leadership, her lecture “Changing the World One Community at a Time,” will emphasize how local actions lead to global impacts.

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About Carmen Yulín Cruz

Carmen Yulín Cruz is a former Puerto Rican politician who served as mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico from 2013 to 2020. She also served in the House of Representatives of Puerto Rico from 2009-2012. She received her undergraduate degree in political science from Boston University and her master’s degree in public policy from Carnegie Mellon University. Prior to her career in politics, she was human resources director for companies including Colgate-Palmolive, Banco Popular and Scotiabank, and the Treasury Department. Since leaving politics in 2020, she is an active advocate for women empowerment, immigrants, the deaf community, the LGBTQ community, community lead and center crisis response especially in the areas of food sustainability and solar power local solutions as well as leadership at the local level.

Cruz has received numerous recognitions and awards, including the Martin Luther King Centre Justice, Peace and Freedom Award and Humanitarian Leadership Award in 2018, the Antonio Villaraigosa Leadership Award in 2018, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation Humanitarian Award in 2017 and the Puerto Rico Arts Alliance Felisa Rincón Legacy Public Service Award. In 2018, she was on the TIME Magazine list of the 100 Most Influential People in the World for her leadership in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. More recently she received the CORE Foundation’s Gary Shandling Humanitarian Award, the Dolores Huerta Woman of Courage Medallion from United States Hispanic Leadership Institute, and an award from the Blue Card for those aiding needy Holocaust survivors.

Of all the titles and awards she has been honored to receive, Yulín is most proud of the title of mom to her daughter Marina.

About the Eloise S. Cofer Family Living Lecture Series

Hosted by the Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences, the Cofer Family Living Lecture Series brings renowned women leaders in human sciences who work to nurture meaningful connections between food, family and community. Past lecturers include chef and restaurateur Cheeti Kumar, autism advocate, best-selling author and agriculture innovator Temple Grandin, and award-winning chef, TV personality, author and NC State alumna Vivian Howard.


Department of Agriculture and Human Sciences
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