Feeling known and celebrated for who you are establishes connections with others and creates the foundation for community. That’s the heart of our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) at Twilio. We believe that a variety of viewpoints and voices fuel success, so we made it a value – Be Inclusive. Diversity, representation, and inclusion matter here. You may know we value these, but seeing is believing. That’s why we recently celebrated Latinx Heritage Month globally with a variety of activities and events intended to support, share, and promote our Latinx Twilions in the US and abroad.
Latinx Heritage Month (September 15 to October 15) celebrates the rich history, culture, presence, and influence of Hispanic and Latin Americans in the United States. It coincides with independence day for eight Latin countries – five of them on September 15. For 20 years, it was a one-week event. However, in 1988, the US began setting apart one month to honor and highlight the heritages and contributions of Latinx Americans. Despite the US origin, our events extended beyond America’s borders.
Throughout this time period, our Latinx @ Twilio ERG hosted events geared toward educating employees about the amazing music, food, and unique cultures within the Latinx community. Employees participated in cooking classes highlighting foods from Columbia and Brazil, music class with rhythms of Puerto Rico, trivia night focused on Latinx history, and – in partnership with Techqueria – a conference to discuss the advancement of Latinx talent in Tech. The authenticity and acceptance from these interactions created stronger allies and friendships throughout the organization.
Celebrating contributions and achievements of Latinx Twilions
When you know someone’s back story and understand the challenges they have faced and overcome, you have deeper insight into the significance of their success. Latinx @ Twilio is dedicated to the professional empowerment and development of its members, celebrating cultural diversity and fostering an inclusive Latinx community at Twilio and at large.
Check out a few of the Latinx leaders making a difference at Twilio and in our industry.
Tom Martinez: Vice President, GTM Operations (Remote |Minneapolis , MN)
Co-executive sponsor of Latinx @ Twilio
Tom continues to extend himself as a leader at Twilio paving the way for upcoming talent. Even in a highly demanding role he takes the time to engage and support Latinx Twilions as they continue to learn and grow.
Annie Benitez Pelaez: Senior Director, Product Management (San Francisco, CA)
Annie leads with her reputation of getting things done. As the founder of Wonder (Disabilities) ERG and active member of Latinx @ Twilio ERG, she takes pride in creating spaces for underrepresented employees to connect, learn, and grow together.
As a talent acquisition leader, Joel has dedicated his career to finding the best talent possible in the most efficient way. He effectively uses technology to reach and build diverse talent pools to help grow diverse representation at Twilio.
Simone Gutierrez: Technical Launch Manager (Denver, CO)
Simone joined Twilio with the Sendgrid acquisition and transitioned seamlessly to the Latinx @ Twilio board. With the amazing amount of things she juggles both personally and professionally, she has worked her way up to become a Technical Launch Manager. Her peers admire her dedication and can-do attitude.
Jose Contreras: Product Operations Engineer (San Francisco, CA)
As the only male member of the Latinx @ Twilio board, his value is unmeasurable, and he continues to exude positivity to the board as well as the Latinx ERG community.
Larissa Prairie: Director, LATAM SI/Resell Partners (San Francisco, CA)
Larissa creates impact by driving change in and outside of Twilio. Outside of her role she helped develop external partnerships like Techqueria that supports the advancement of Latinx talent in tech. She also encourages Twilions to volunteer and help educate Latinx youth in STEM across various communities in San Francisco.
Larissa shares, “Latinx representation matters in Tech because it shows those who had to work three, four, and even maybe five times harder to get where they are. It matters because younger generations need to see what they can one day be. Like attracts like, and in the Latinx community that means providing support and access to members of our community. In order for this industry to continue thriving in innovation, agility, and disrupting the status quo, it needs to reflect the reality we see in our world's diversity.”
Commited to diversity
Through all the recent events at Twilio around celebrating our cultural diversity, we’ve learned to appreciate our differences and come to realize we often have more in common than we think. Like a tapestry, full of vibrant colors, our differences woven together create something beautiful. No matter where you come from, you can belong at Twilio.
Learn more about our commitment to diversity