Mayra Yoana Jaimes Peña is a native of Guerrero, Mexico, at the age of 3 she immigrated to East Los Angeles, CA with her father. As Mayra came into her adulthood in the US, her parents’ experience coupled with her own status as an undocumented immigrant, were hard lessons learned in injustice and inequality. In 2006, the Sensenbrenner Act (HR4437) inspired Mayra’s political engagement, leading her to co-organize her high school’s walk out and later participating in the mass protest in the streets of Downtown LA. These pivotal moments are landmark events that inspired Mayra to continue organizing and advocating against injustice.
Mayra Yoana continued her education and political organizing at Pasadena City College and later transferred to California State Los Angeles, where she received her B.A in History. Her organizing experience with grassroots and nonprofit organizations have developed Mayra’s resilience and faith to effect change. For the past 10 years, Mayra’s passion to shift narratives and intersectional framework for immigrant rights have highlighted the need to integrate healing-justice into all aspects of her work, and she is currently a Healing Justice Fellow with the UndocuHealing Project.
Mayra resides in Oakland, CA and is employed by the Office of Civic Engagement & Immigrant Affairs where she is the Program Coordinator for the DreamSF Fellowship, a leadership and professional development initiative for immigrant youth in San Francisco/Bay Area. When she is not in her role as an advocate, Mayra brings joy into her life by reading, laughing, eating, traveling and watching nature documentaries.