How They Got There - Latinx Changemakers | October 15

This event is part of GA's Latinx Heritage Month: ¡Atrévete!

A month-long fiesta to showcase Hispanic and Latinx communities and celebrating the positive impact that they have made on modern US history. And, for the first time, General Assembly will offer our award-winning tech workshops en Español, taught by Latinx leaders!

Check out the full schedule here!

Historically, the Latinx community has faced many challenges, ranging from health, educational, economic to developmental barriers. What makes Latinx stories so special is that no matter how many obstacles existed, incredible changemakers still rose to the top.

Needless to say, these one-of-a-kind stories have inspired a plethora of Latinx professionals and paved the way for generations to come. General Assembly is honored to celebrate Latinx Heritage Month amongst these giants.

During this conversation, we’ll uncover the inspirational stories behind Latinx leaders, professionals and changemakers. Together, we’ll discuss action-oriented steps the Latinx community can take to continue breaking barriers.


  • Identify resources that advocate for Latinx communities
  • Learn about Latinx history and the importance of heritage months
  • Network and learn from Latinx professionals

About the Instructor

Mariana Costa Photo

Co-founder and CEO, Laboratoria

Mariana is the co-founder and CEO at Laboratoria, an organization empowering women who dream of a better future to start and grow careers in technology. With learning centers across Latin America, Laboratoria is helping shape a more diverse, inclusive and competitive digital economy in Latin America that can create opportunities for every woman to develop her potential. For her work as a social entrepreneur Mariana has been named one of Peru's leading innovators by the MIT and one of the world's most influential women by the BBC . She holds a BSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics and a Masters Degree in Public Administration from Columbia University in New York.

Pedro J. Rivera, Esquire Photo

Senior Director, Individual Giving, UNIDOS US

Pedro J. Rivera, Esquire, joined UNIDOS US in 2019 as the Senior Director of Individual Giving. Pedro's responsibility is to build a first-in-class Individual Giving program. Pedro's responsibilities include cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of Individual Giving donors who support UNIDOS US in Washington DC.

Before joining City Year Greater Philadelphia, Pedro served at the Miami Children's Hospital Foundation in 2010 as a Director of Development and Planned Giving. His primary focus is to form new philanthropic alliances to benefit Miami Children’s Hospital. He previously served as a consultant for non-profit organizations through his own company, PJR Consulting. Before that, he served as Vice President, Wealth Relationship Officer for Wachovia Wealth Management-Legal Specialty Group. He worked with large multinational and international law firms and provided their attorneys with private banking services. Before that, he was V.P. at PNC Bank.

During his career, Pedro was a former board member of the Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (GPHCC), where he served as the board sponsor to the GPHCC Latino Professional Mentoring Network.

He is the Past President of the Hispanic Bar Association of Pennsylvania and Region IV, Past President of the Hispanic National Bar Association.

Pedro received his J.D. from Western New England College School of Law and his B.S. degree in business administration from the Univerisity of South Florida. Pedro is a member of the District of Columbia, the Hispanic National Bar Association, the National Capital Planning Council, and the Partnership for Philanthropic Planning.

Specialties: Non-Profit development/planned giving and Board Governance experienced, Recruitment, and Diversity training. Estate and Financial Planning.

Thomas Miranda Photo

Founder & GP, Top Line Ventures

Tomás served as an engineer, manager and executive for two decades within high growth Fortune 50 Silicon Valley firms HP Palo Alto and mostly Cisco. He has held roles ranging from product development, corporate strategy, Enterprise IT/sales strategy to operating and management.

Tomás is President of Sparkovation Advisors, a digital product and management consultancy that advises startups, CEOs, corporations and investment portfolios on value creation, digital business strategy and growth. He has also served as a director & chairman to numerous regional and statewide nonprofits, led executive director search/transitions and advised startups, CEOs and corporations.

He formed his first tech startup at 15 years of age and with a penchant for innovation and growth, later began his engineering career at HP Palo Alto then at Cisco where he led product development / engineering teams to deliver successive billion-dollar flagship products from concept to market. He later founded the office and served as Cisco’s inaugural Hispanic ERG CTO over the Americas & Europe while collaborating with thought leaders and working with Cisco Ventures to seed billion-dollar ideas across global markets and evangelizing emerging technologies aligned to Cisco’s investment portfolio.

Today, Tomás is General Partner of Top Line Ventures, a group focused on advising and seeding exceptional 4IR, cyber and B2B investments across sectors founded, led or operated by underestimated tech innovators.

Due to his lived experiences, he has been compelled to engage across many critical social impact causes where disparities are the greatest, including education, workforce, inclusion & entrepreneurship. He served as a past Board Chair of The Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Austin Ed Fund, EGBI and Mission Capital. And currently serves on the boards of Texas Lyceum, UT College of Natural Science (UTCNS), Capital Area Workforce Solutions, Austin Area Research Organization and UFCU (a $4B cooperative).

He graduated from The University of Texas at San Antonio with a BS in Electrical Engineering and has earned project management and executive leadership credentials from George Washington University, Stanford University & Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Bryant Castro Photo

UX Design Director, Bitso

UX Design Director of consumer products for the largest crypto startup in Latin America. Designer with over 7 years of experience in Fintech/Banking, Hospitality, Travel, and Media and Entertainment. I strive to help designers/teams have an impact on organizations by applying proactivity.

Marcia Dellarosa Photo

Creative Art Director & Brand Specialist, Trafilea

With more than 10 years in the design industry, from a small e-commerce business to the most known DTC brands, always as a brand problem-solving soul. Specialized in Creative Direction, Brand Identity, Direct-Response, UI/UX, Environmental Design, Emotional Packaging, and Print Design

Leonardo Caetano Photo

Product Design & Strategy Manager, Workhuman

I've been working as a design and research leader for almost a decade in various industries. Nowadays, I share with passion what I've been learning in this process to help others achieve better results when designing their thing and learning from them in this mutual process.

Frank Duran Photo

Design Director, USAA

In The Begining Like many designers, creativity was always a part of how I explored the world. I was often drawing, crafting, and building to understand how things worked and the possibilities to make things better. However, I graduated high school before the internet became the dot-com jungle it is today. My interest in art, design, and technology did not provide a clear career path at the time, so I started in the technology field and worked my way back to design as the internet and digital technologies started to emerge.

Agency Life After several years in the technology field, I made the leap to creative life in the agency world. I started at MEA Digital where I worked on digital projects for clients like Kyocera, Centurion Boats, Callaway Golf, and Oakley.

Soon after, I met my wife, moved to Texas, and continued my career at T-3. The creative environment at T-3 was enriching and gave me the opportunity to work on award-winning projects for Dell, JCP, Universal, Taco Bell, and Marriott.

Mission and Family First As my family grew, I found a new home at USAA. I started as a contract designer and now lead design teams as a Design Director. Working for a Fortune 100 financial services company helped me mature as a designer and leader. The clear and service focused mission of USAA has enabled me and my team to deliver solutions through human-centered design.

Continued Growth I continue to grow as a design leader and stay involved with the design community through creative work, mentoring, and speaking engagements.

About Our Partners

ADPList is a community based on connection and inclusivity — a platform where people can find, book and meet mentors around the world. At ADPList, we believe in inspiring meaningful conversations led by our mentors.

UnidosUS is the nation’s largest Latino civil rights and advocacy organization. Since our founding in 1968, we have contributed to a stronger America by elevating the voice of Latinos, and defending and advancing our community’s concerns.

  • October 15, 2021 at 12:00pm – 1pm
  • Online
    New York, NY 10010
    United States
    Google map and directions
  • Lesly Rodriguez