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Staff Spotlight: Wendy & M.E. Step Into New Roles

Please join us in congratulating Wendy Cardenas and M.E. Smith on their new roles at Make the Road. Wendy is now our first Organizing Director while M.E. is our Development & Programs Director. Both Wendy and M.E. joined the Make the Road team back in 2017. Wendy joined our team as a community organizer where she built strong foundational relationships and blossomed into a fierce lead organizer where she invested deeply in a members to organizers pipeline. M.E. has been the backbone of creating a diverse stream of resources for organizational health as well as supporting with the operations and programming. In her new role, Wendy will continue to invest in leading dynamic organizing campaigns while M.E. will continue to build up organizational resources and systems to ensure our continued growth and success. See below for Wendy (left) and M.E.'s (right) favorite moments in Make the Road and what they are looking forward to in their new roles!

Tell us about a favorite MRCT moment.

Wendy: So many! But one of my favorite moments has been when my mom attended my committee meetings and inspired other mothers to continue to fight for the education their children deserve.

M.E.: One of my favorite moments at MRCT was when our Fight Back Committee members organized a “posadas” event which is a traditional event in Mexico around the holidays. Our members organized the event and recreated it to focus it on the right to migrate and be together with one’s family. They even rewrote a traditional religious song to make it more of a protest song, and brought instruments and we walked from church to church, talking about the importance of sanctuary and justice.

What are you looking forward to in this new role?

Wendy: Some of the things I am excited about is continuing developing and supporting the growth of the organizing team and the membership, strengthening our relationships with legislators, launching a new leaders’ council, and continuing building power at a local, state and federal level with our members!

M.E.: I am excited about growing our team! I have always worn many hats at MRCT, and as part of this new role I will also be supporting our new Communications and Digital Associate as well as our new Operations and Special Projects Manager. I am happy to pass a few of my hats off to others and be able to focus on growing our team so that we can continue to build power in our communities.

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