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Ariana CervantesDevelopment Associate

Ariana (she/her) is a recent alumna from the SoCal Coro Fellowship in Public Affairs and a Bay Area native. As Development Associate, she supports the External Affairs team in donor, campaign, grant and database management. Prior to her fellowship, Ariana completed her master’s in Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology from the University of Oxford and her bachelor’s in Global Health from Queen Mary University of London. After several years living in the UK, she is excited to be back in the Bay! She lives in San Francisco with her partner, their two dogs, and tries to visit the beach as much as possible. 

What inspires you to work in leadership development?

I love strengths-based development and seeing people discover their own unique ways of leading and advocating. Being “a leader” has the potential to be intimidating, but I believe leadership is a process of learning the tools, skills, and frameworks that equip a person to have the lightbulb moment of discovering their advocacy calling. 

What’s your favorite leadership quote? 

I love the teachings of bell hooks and Dr. Gabor Maté for their compassionate, non-judgemental approaches. A favorite quote comes from Dr. Maté, who said “…meeting people where they are at, and treating them like they are human beings, and not trying to change them, actually opens up the possibility of transformation for them.” I love this approach for its recognition and acceptance of others, regardless of difference or disagreement. 

Where are we most likely to find you when you’re not at work?

Probably on a yoga mat or out walking Penny the Husky!