A Cloud Guru Receives National Recognition for Company Culture and Diversity

At the start of every new year, I find myself looking back on the previous 12 months, reflecting on what went well, what didn’t, and everything in between. With 2020, this exercise proved a little more challenging than normal — for every good event, there seemed to be ten bad ones. …

I understand adversity. I’ve lived it. I was raised by a single mother who emigrated to the U.S. from Colombia when she was 18. She spent years moving from one low-paying job to the next. When I was in kindergarten, we lost our home. My mom, abuela, my two siblings, and I packed our things and moved in with my tia Alba.

I also understand resilience, it’s a lesson my mom taught me. When we were evicted, my Tia’s house became a stable, happy home. …

Like most Hispanic women, my story starts with my mom, Flor.

At 13 years old, she emigrated from Colombia to the Panama Canal Zone in 1963 when it was a U.S. territory. When she arrived, she was adopted by her older sister, my Tia Alba. Mom dropped out of the 8th grade because the courses in English were too hard for her, and she just couldn’t keep up.

For Mom, life in the U.S. looked a lot like what you’d imagine for a typical brown immigrant pursuing the American dream. When she was 18, she got her GED, married my…

Lorraine Vargas Townsend

A queer, Latinx, progressive HR executive with 20+ years of experience. My mission: fight tokenism to lift up people & build anti-racist, inclusive workplaces.

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