Latin America holds a special place in my heart. When I visit the region, there’s an unmistakable warmth and familiarity that welcomes me, evoking a comforting sense of home. No matter where my travels take me, it’s in Latin America, particularly in Mexico, that I find not just a destination but an integral part of my identity.

My roots run deep as my mother hails from Mexico, and my daughter from Guatemala. I conducted my doctoral dissertation in Guatemala and also spent the first 12 years of my career working in the region. These immersive experiences introduced me to the unique challenges and opportunities for creating meaningful impact in the area.

I feel fortunate to be part of an organization whose mission and goals resonate deeply with my own values and identity. The alignment between my personal convictions and Miller Center’s shared commitment to fostering market-based solutions to social issues in Latin America is not just a stroke of luck; it’s a meaningful convergence that fuels my passion for our work.

Miller Center is proud to have accelerated many of the most prominent social enterprise success stories in the region, including Someone Somewhere, Iluméxico, Clínicas del Azúcar, and Sistema Bio. We have also worked with leading ecosystem organizations and universities to strengthen their capabilities and provide additional accompaniment to exceptional local social entrepreneurs along their scaling journeys. Further, Miller Center Capital is aiming to broaden our partnerships with local investors, ultimately driving $60 million to Latin American social enterprises over the next three years.

We’re not alone in recognizing Latin America’s potential for growth. There has been a huge surge in impact assets under management, venture capital, and collaboration between public and private capital. These assets have experienced significant growth, with an annualized rate of 21% over the past five years, ranking only second in emerging markets behind East Asia. According to Impact Alpha, the impact investing ecosystem is increasingly directing funding toward supporting Latin American initiatives, specifically addressing poverty reduction, climate resilience, and enhanced access to clean energy and quality healthcare.

This growing impact investing ecosystem was on display last week when we visited the Latin American Impact Investing Forum (FLII) in Merida, Mexico. FLII’s annual event provides a platform for networking, learning, and advancing social entrepreneurship in the region and showcases sessions emphasizing collaboration and growth. This year, the theme was centered around three major pillars of connection:

  • Uniting humanity with empathy and action.
  • Cherishing and protecting nature.
  • Ensuring that technology serves the greater good with purpose and integrity.

Miller Center enjoyed some terrific networking opportunities, especially around recruiting social enterprises and partners (our community partnership program generated a lot of buzz), as well as potential investors for Miller Center Capital. Highlights from the week included facilitating a knowledge-sharing workshop with nearly 50 local entrepreneurs and university students to explore avenues for creating positive change in their community; collaborating with ecosystem partners Impacto, elea, and Co_Capital to provide our Latin America alumni valuable insights on scaling their businesses and maximizing social impact; and co-sponsoring a lively happy hour where two dozen entrepreneurs had the chance to network and learn more about Miller Center’s flagship accelerator program.

Over the course of the week, we repeatedly heard from partners and alumni on the value of experiencing firsthand the transformative power of collaborating with Miller Center. “It’s exhilarating to have the opportunity to connect with Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship. Every time we engage, it’s a high quality experience,” shared German Zubia, cofounder of Hipocampus and graduate of Miller Center’s 2017 accelerator program. Hippocampus received the inaugural IGNITE Award for Social Impact and was recognized by FLII for creating outstanding and positive change in Latin America.

Miller Center is deeply committed to elevating the voices of social entrepreneurs and building an entrepreneur-centric ecosystem. And we’re hearing support for this approach among our peers in the impact ecosystem. Unfortunately, it’s not easy. Conferences, in particular, can be a difficult place to achieve this, because entrepreneurs are typically attending to pitch their businesses to potential partners and investors. They are unlikely to raise concerns about the very players they’re looking for support from. The onus is on the rest of us in the ecosystem to engage in active listening with social entrepreneurs in order to better understand their needs. FLII and other conference organizers can assist by using their platforms to support a more balanced dynamic among stakeholders.

As I left Mexico early this month, I felt even more committed to paving the way for social enterprises to drive impact in Latin America, leaving a lasting imprint on the communities that have shaped my personal and professional journey.



  • Visiting Chichén Itzá was so inspiring
  • With my mom last year in Seattle
  • Social entrepreneurs and the Miller Center team at our FLII workshop
  • Celebrating with German Zubia, cofounder of Hipocampus