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Award-winning, internationally-known civil and

human rights leader and Chicana feminist.

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Chicana Feminist, wife, mother, justice seeker and change maker who has dedicated 20 years to advocating for many of today's important civil rights issues, including stopping mass incarceration, police accountability, gender equity, violence prevention and racial healing. An established thought leader in racial justice and intersectional feminism, Carmen has crossed the globe promoting peace through civil and human rights, building alternatives to incarceration and violence, and providing commentary and guidance for state and federal policy creation.

 

Carmen is a leading voice on policy change in policing and the justice system, especially the impact it has on the Latino community. Carmen’s leadership shines in being able to serve as a bridge and power-broker between generations, cultures and identities. She has mentored many of today’s recognized young leaders and created curricula for numerous trainings on intersectional and intercultural coalition-building and contemporary social justice.

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Mother | Organizer | Activist | Femtor | Civil and Human Rights Leader

 
 

Origin Story 

Perez was born in Oxnard, California, to Marcel Perez and Alicia Ramirez Perez. The youngest of five siblings, she grew up playing basketball, softball, and running track as well as dancing hip hop.  In 1994, her sister Patricia was killed and the funeral coincided with Perez’s 17th birthday. Perez has said it was her sister’s death that inspired her to dedicate her life to initiatives that would help transform the lives of young people.  “I remember somebody coming to our home, asking if we wanted to press charges. And my father said ‘I would never take another mother’s child away,’” Perez said. “And so I didn’t learn restorative justice from studying it. I learned it from a man who would never take another mother’s child away.”

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Media and Speaking Engagements

Affiliations

  • President & CEO, The Gathering for Justice

  • Co-Founder, Poderistas

  • Chief of Staff, REFORM Alliance

  • National Co-Chair, 2017 Women's March on Washington

  • Co-Founder, Justice League NYC

  • Founder, Justice League CA

  • Board Member, Barrios Unidos

  • Advisory Board Member, Monogram

  • Member of Roc Nation's United Justice Coalition

Awards & Recognition

  • 2017 "Time 100" Most Influential People

  • 2017 Fortune 50’s Top World Leaders

  • FORBES Mexico 100 Mujeres Mas Poderosas

  • Chairman’s Award, NAACP Image Award 2016

  • Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition for Outstanding and Invaluable Service to the Community

  • 2017 Glamour Women of the Year

  • 2017 Latina of the Year

Expertise

  • Police Accountability

  • Justice Reform

  • Juvenile Justice

  • System Accountability

  • Civil Rights

  • Women's Rights

  • Latino/a/x Voices in Politics, Culture, Entertainment, Criminal Justice & Policing

  • Feminism

  • Intersectional Movement Building

  • Black and Brown Solidarity

  • Mentor and Femtorship

  • Violence Prevention