NUESTRO EQUIPO

OUR TEAM

PODER’s Board of Director’s is comprised of women and gender non-conforming and non-binary peoples from the Latin American diaspora. All of the board members are required to sit on at least one committee that supports the organization’s development. 

Antoinette Salazar Medina

President

"Antoinette Salazar Medina is a queer, sex-positive, intersectional feminist of Afro-Dominican and Afro-Peruvian descent. She is a Behavioural Science graduate from George Brown College, and is currently working on an Honours Bachelor in Sexuality Studies at York University. She aspires to be a sex educator committed to anti-racism and anti-oppression. She developed a course alongside her supervising professor called, Decolonizing the Afro-Latinx Diaspora hoping to contribute to Afro-Latin American and Afro-Caribbean feminism in academia. Antoinette is particularly interested in social, political, and economic issues affecting (dis)abled, queer, trans, Black and Indigenous individuals within Latinx communities. Antoinette helped launch a blog tackling homophobia and transphobia in newcomer communities for Newcomer Women’s Services. She also volunteered for The Centre for Women and Trans People at York University as a workshop facilitator, and continues to volunteer for events that centre queer and trans individuals. She also co-organized the successful Women Rock Fest fundraising event for MUJER."

Kayla Carter

Director of Finance

"Kayla Carter is a multidisciplinary artist, educator, and healer. She is a Tkaranto-based black, disabled, femme survivor who is of Afro- Caribbean ancestry and believes that her existence is

not coincidental, but very deliberate.


Her work as a community educator focuses on ancestral and intergenerational trauma, shame, healing, sexuality, race, gender, disability justice and what it means to be unabashedly human.


As a healer, Kayla’s work focuses on mental health, self-care, self-love ancestral and intergenerational trauma, sustainable forms of healing, and radical reproductive justice/healing.


Her play For Fried Plantains debuted at the National Arts Centre of Canada and has been shown across Canada and the U.S.


She is the founder and creator of B.A.M.T.O.; a market that is For Black Artists. By Black Artists.


She would like to thank her ancestors and remind them that their work was not in vain.


She would also like to acknowledge the Mississaugas of the Credit River and unceded Three Fires Confederacy Territories, as the land where she is currently a settler."

Danielle Araya

co-Director of Fundraising

"Danielle Araya is a Canadian born Mestiza-Chilena, who works as an anti-oppression educator and is currently employed with the 519 community centre, as a facilitator specializing in trans inclusion training and as the coordinator of the Trans Youth Mentorship Program. Dani has also worked with organizations like 2 Spirited People of the 1st Nations and Ontario Aboriginal HIV/AIDS Strategy; as a member of their boards, as a social justice storyteller, and as a peer outreach worker to help better support and serve the two-spirit communities in and outside Toronto. She is proud to carry on the legacy of her ancestors, both of blood and spirit, and inspire others as a teacher, healer, leader, and dreamer."

Carmen Galvan

co-Director of Fundraising

"Carmen Galvan is a cis Mexican woman who has lived in Canada for 25 years. Carmen has her Masters in social work and has a passion for accessibility education, anti-psychiatry/anti-sanism work and worked in the mental health sector for 4 years. She now works at an AIDS service organization supporting families and children and volunteers at the AIDS Committee of Toronto and the Toronto Humane Society."

Melisa Prieto

Director of Programming  

"I am a queer, non-binary, mestiza Artist Educator from Colombia, creating play and arts-based programming con el enfoque de despertar conciencia about consent, sex-positivity, mental health, gender-inclusivity, holistic, person-centered wellness practices, critical analysis of the education system in Toronto, and the therapeutic role of play in our lives. I am passionate in my belief in our collective capacity to organize and effect change in our communities through storytelling, multigenerational education, and honouring the conocimientos and resiliency we bring as we move through borders."

Eli Carmona

co-Director of Communications

"Eli Carmona is a multidisciplinary visual creator, born in El Salvador and based in Toronto since 2014. They work as a communications specialist at The 519, where they pour their care and love for the LGBTQ2S community while learning more about community building. They are an expression-explorer through photography, motion graphics and writing, finding ways to share their story, journey and identity. They have a bachelor degree in Graphic Design and a Post-grad in Interactive Media Management from George Brown College. They are interested in building safe spaces, where sharing skills and creating together becomes a healing method. They have been a volunteer for Trans Workforce, Gallery 44, The Centre for Mindfulness Studies, etc. On their free time, they might be finding new ways to not have free time, cooking food for friends, or indulging in animated series, movies, etc."

Yamari Martin-Halsall

co-Director of Communications

"Born and raised in Toronto as the daughter of Afro-Indigenous Nicaraguan refugees; she became interested in Social Justice and Latin American issues after exploring more in-depth injustices committed against the Miskito Indigenous and Creole Communities of Nicaragua and witnessing first-hand its intergenerational traumatic effect on her family. She is an aspiring artist who is exploring different mediums to share her unique experience growing up in a matriarchal family as a kriol-miskito woman between Central America and the urban landscape of Toronto. Yamari is a recent Hispanic Studies and Spanish/English Translation graduate from York University-Glendon College, previously working with Casa-Pueblito, and currently volunteers with the Nicaraguan community when she's not taking calls at a local call centre."

Maria Clara

Board Member

"Maria Clara de Sena is an Afro-Brazilian human rights activist who joined PODER's Board of Directors in 2018. Before moving to Toronto, she served on the United Nations Subcommittee on the Prevention of Torture addressing the rights of LGBTI persons in detention. She will be returning for her second year on the Board."

Jenniffer Duverge

Board Member

"Jenniffer is an Afro-Dominican, born and raised in San Cristobal, Dominican Republic. She's an artist and DJ that moved to Toronto in 2014. She has experience working in the non-for-profit sector in Toronto with Access Alliance in their Settlement Services for newcomers and with UforChange in their Youth Arts Programs, she has also volunteered in various community organizations in Chiapas, Mexico; focusing on educational programs with street children and also acted as an observer at the Lacandon Forest; avoiding the attacks in the indigenous community in that area. She is passionate about mental health awareness/education and committed to anti-oppression, anti-racism and decolonization."