How did Equis
come to be?
We believe the future of American democracy is inextricably linked to our ability to massively increase civic participation among Latinos in this country.
We launched Equis in 2019 to address this challenge.
We set out to create a better understanding of Latinos, innovate new approaches to reach and engage them, and invest in the leadership and infrastructure for long-term change and increased engagement.
Latino, Latinx, Latine, Hispanic?
In an effort to embrace the many cultures and complexities within our community, Equis utilizes at least all four nouns to further articulate the diversity and nuance of the Hispanic diaspora in the United States.
Equis seeks to be a resource that develops actionable recommendations for practitioners seeking to engage the Latinx voter. We work collaboratively with partners and allies, lead with learning and research, and support building programs that address the deep-rooted issues that prevent Hispanic and Latino communities from achieving their full potential and influence.
Meet the Team
Carlos oversees the research and overall strategy for Equis.
Previously, Carlos was an advisor to progressive funders on strategies around civic engagement, advocacy and politics. For more than five years, he acted as Executive Director for the Florida Alliance, a state donor collaborative that helped fund campaigns for democracy reform, civic participation, and legislative accountability, among others.
Formerly, he was Director of Special Projects for New Organizing Institute, leading experiments on candidate recruitment and online campaign training. He was a member of the DNC Platform Drafting Committee in 2012.
Carlos served in the White House Office of Political Affairs, acting as a liaison for Latino leaders and an advisor on political issues in the southern and western regions, after working as Deputy Latino Vote Director for the 2008 presidential campaign.
Before joining the campaign, he managed communications for AlleyCorp, a group of New York-based internet start-ups that included Business Insider and Gilt Groupe, and GALA, an arts non-profit in DC.
At American University, he majored in Spanish Studies, focusing on Latin American literature. Carlos is from Miami, FL and currently resides in West New York, NJ with his wife and two daughters.
Jess Morales Rocketto is currently at Equis Research as Chief of Moonshot Strategies – leading their efforts on new, bold, and long-term efforts to build Latino political power.
Jess was previously the Director of Civic Engagement for the National Domestic Workers Alliance & Executive Director of Care in Action and the Co-Chair of the Families Belong Together Coalition. She is a co-founder of Supermajority and Poderistas.
She is also an alumna of Hillary for America, the AFL-CIO, Obama for America, and the DNC.
Stephanie Valencia is a national leader and innovator at the nexus of politics, technology, and leadership development.
She is the co-founder of Equis, a set of organizations working to create a better understanding of Latino voters and investing in new approaches to reach and engage them while building the infrastructure and leadership bench to advance this important work. She has spent her career working in Congress, the White House, Google, and advised entrepreneurs like Reid Hoffman and Penny Pritzker.
She serves on the boards of Planned Parenthood for America Action, Community Change Action, and is a founding member of Poderistas, with Eva Longoria & America Ferrera.