AfroResistance Organization Announces Historic Appointment Of Mauri Balanta Jaramillo As Deputy Director

By AfroResistance

Photos: AfroResistance\Facebook

New York, NY – Tuesday, June 11, 2024 – AfroResistance is proud to announce the appointment of Mauri Balanta Jaramillo as the new Deputy Director. This historic appointment marks the first time a Black Trans Woman has assumed this pivotal role within a Black-led regional Human Rights organization.

Mauri Balanta Jaramillo brings a wealth of experience and a profound commitment to social justice, making her an exemplary addition to the AfroResistance leadership team. With advanced degrees in Cultural Diversity and Intercultural Communication from the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen in Germany and a Bachelor’s in Popular Education from Universidad del Valle, Colombia, Mauri’s academic and professional background equips her to excel in this critical role.

Her extensive professional leadership roles includes Country Representative for the Cross Culture Programme in Colombia-Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen , Representative for Latin America at German Lesbian and Gay Association of Germany, LSVD,  Coordinator of Intersectionaland Diversity Initiatives at  Pacífico Task Force – Icesi University and member of the United Women’s Network – German Federal Foreign Office. For more than 13 years she has been a member of the Cultural House Association “El Chontaduro”, a community-based organization that has become a continental reference in the struggle for racial-spatial justice in Colombia. Mauri’s work has consistently centered on advocating for human rights, equity, and justice, particularly for Black women, femmes, and girls across the Americas.

“We are answering the political and historic call that we are mandated to answer by welcoming Mauri to AfroResistance,” said Janvieve Williams Comrie, Founder and Current Executive Director of AfroResistance. “Her expertise, dedication, and political perspective are essential as we intensify our fight for the liberation of Black Women and all Black and colonized people across the Americas This appointment is a bold affirmation of our radical commitment to dismantling oppressive systems and setting a transformative precedent for justice and human rights within our organization and beyond.”

AfroResistance operates on five foundational principles, the first being, Black Unity in the Americas, and the second, a Gender Analysis that centers Black Trans Women and Girls. We firmly believe that understanding and addressing how all systems impact Black Trans Women and Girls is an intentional stand that will lead to the liberation of all BlackWomen and girls. Therefore, it is imperative to promote the participation and leadership of Black Trans women at the decision-making table.

Mauri’s appointment comes at a time when trans leadership faces significant challenges. Despite advances in visibility and rights, trans individuals, especially Black Trans Women, continue to encounter systemic barriers and discrimination in leadership roles. According to a report by the University of Richmond, trans leaders often face marginalization, lack of resources, and heightened scrutiny, which underscores the importance of supportive and inclusive organizational cultures.

In her position, Mauri will amplify AfroResistance’s mission, vision, and strategy in the United States and throughout the region. AfroResistance’s commitment to liberation reflects its principles where all its staff embody the voices of women impacted by state violence. In her role, Mauri will be tasked with organizational oversight and direction, providing strategic administrative and project management support, and ensuring the smooth execution of day-to-day activities. This includes overseeing operations, managing financial tasks, supporting team leadership, and facilitating communication across the organization.

“I am proud to be part of an organization that has been an important reference in my activism and social leadership, and I will commit my work to the continuous improvement of the processes of political action, knowledge production and social innovation that AfroResistance promotes to ensure racial, environmental and gender justice in our Afro-descendant communities in the Americas.,” said Mauri Balanta Jaramillo, the newly appointed Deputy Director.

Evelyn Alvarez, Board Chair of AfroResistance, expressed her enthusiasm about Mauri’s appointment: “Mauri’s extensive experience makes her a great choice for this role. Her appointment is a tremendous step forward not just for AfroResistance, but for the broader community. Mauri shared that a trans person in a leadership role supervising cis people is rare, and we are thrilled to be an organization that walks the walk. We are excited to see the impact she will have on our programs as we continue to fight for justice and liberation”.

AfroResistance is a Black-led organization dedicated to promoting human rights, democracy, and justice for Black people across the Americas. Through advocacy, education, and community engagement, AfroResistance works to address systemic inequalities and uplift the voices and experiences of Black women, femmes, and girls.

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