New York State Youth Leadership Council

Meet The Team

Since the NYSYLC does not have a president, take a look at our organizational chart to better understand who does what at the NYSYLC and who you can contact depending on what you may need.


Name: Daniela
Title: Board Member
Bio: Daniela is Ecuadorian by birth and a New Yorker at heart. She came to the United States at the age of 14. She attended Newcomers High School and obtained her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Baruch College in 2007. During college, she was president of the Ecuadorian Club. Her involvement at the NYSYLC started in 2008 when she joined as an active member, and gradually her commitment and interest for the pro-immigrant movement grew. Daniela is currently working on obtaining her master’s degree in Urban Policy Analysis and Management at the New School, which she will use to empower and bring the voices of immigrants and minority groups to the policy-making table. Daniela serves as a board member, providing support in the finance area of the organization. Her favorite activities include discovering new places in New York City and dancing at Latin rock concerts.


Name: Jose Luis Z.
Title: Co-Founder/Treasurer
Bio: Jose Luis helped co-found the NYSYLC. He has been committed to the YLC’s mission. He has participated in many action, such as the NY Trail Of Dreams, where he walked 250 miles from NY to DC to create awareness about the Dream Act. He also participated in the 10 day Hunger Strike (Starved for Dream) in front of Senator Schumer office where he, and many others, demanded that Senator Schumer move the Dream Act out of the immigration sub-committee. Currently Jose Luis helps out in the Leadership Development committee and handles some of the finances of the organization. He believes that the leadership of young can have a positive impact in the struggle for social change.


Name: Kiran
Title: Board Member
Bio: Kiran is a second generation immigrant youth organizer from California. Kiran has been active in the immigrant rights movement since 2006, and in the immigrant youth movement since 2007, when she joined the NYSYLC. Kiran served as a core member of the NYSYLC, working in all areas of the organization, and as its Development Coordinator, ensuring the long term sustainability of this immigrant youth led organization. Kiran has been active with END cases since 2009, working primarily on the policy/legislative aspects of the cases. Kiran also coordinated the policy/legislative work for the Dream Is Coming Project, and other Dream Act efforts in 2010. She earned her BA in Political Science with Honors from New York University in 2010 and her Masters of Public Administration from New York University in 2011, with a concentration in Public Policy and Nonprofit Management. She is currently working at the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California. Kiran is committed to the recognition and self-determination of undocumented youth and immigrant families.

Name: Marisol R.
Title: Co-Founder/Board Member
Bio: Marisol is a graduate student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and is pursuing a Dual Masters degree in Public Policy and Higher Education (MPP/MA). Born and raised in the South Bronx to Mexican immigrant parents, she has nearly a decade of experience in youth organizing, alliance-building, and public policy campaign experience in immigration reform at the local and national level. Marisol previously worked as a Program Associate at the New World Foundation in New York managing the Phoenix Fund for Workers and Communities, which provides organizational and philanthropic support to grantee immigrant rights organizations in the US and Mexico. Marisol co-founded the NYSYLC and currently serves as a Board Member.


Name: Sonia G.
Title: Board Member
Bio: Sonia Guinansaca an undocumented poet from New York . She was born in Ecuador and raised in Harlem since the age of 5. Currently, Sonia is attending Hunter College where she is going for a double major in Africana Puerto Rican Latinos Studies, and Women & Gender Studies. Since her involvement in 2008, Sonia has served as a core member,coordinator of media & outreach, and coordinator of the NY END ( Education Not Deportation) Campaign. In 2011 she helped launch Dreaming in Ink , a creative writing workshop that helps undocumented youth cultivate their voice and reclaim their stories.Soon after she founded the new NYSYLC’s Arts and Expression Program. Now, Sonia serves as Board Member of the NYSYLC, where she handles the public relations and arts aspect of the organization.


Name: Angy
Core member
Angy is a Colombian-born New York-raised undocumented immigrant. She came at the age of three with her mother. Since high school, Angy has always been involved in her community. She was president of the Aspira Club, it was during this time that she first heard about the Dream Act. Angy became involved with the NYSYLC in January 2009. In October 2010 she started the country’s first undocumented youth advice column called Ask Angy. She is an on and off student at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and a part-time super hero trying to inspire and make a difference in someone’s life. Her favorite color is yellow, she loves animals and chocolate!


Name: Diana Eusebio
Title: Core-in-training
Bio: Diana is one of the youngest members and leaders at the NYSYLC. She came to the United States with her brothers and father at the age of six. After living in Florida for nine years, she moved to New York in 2011 after seeing first hand how the Secure Communities Program destroyed families. She found refuge in the NYSYLC after attending a General Meeting and since then has been active in meetings, workshops and rallies. She’s currently a student at Hostos Lincoln Academy of Science in the Bronx. She is a member of the GSA club in her school and takes college classes in the afternoon. Summer is her favorite season, she enjoys reading and going to the movies.

Name: Gerardo Mendez
Title: Core Member/Coordinator of the Media and Outreach Committee (MEACH)
Bio: Gerardo Mendez is a young artist, born in Mexico, and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He arrived in the United States when he was three years old. Mendez has studied photography and graphic design since he was a sophomore in high school, but has dabbled in multiple mediums of fine art as well as street art prior to his commitment to his current crafts. His experience has led him to multiple projects in brand identification and logo design, as well projects with portrait and fashion photography.

Name: Luis S.
Title: Leadership Development Co-coordinator/UndocuQueer Project Co-coordinator
Bio: At the age of 10, Luis moved to the US and was raised in the Bronx, New York where he continues to be a Bronxite to this day. A student at the City University of New York, Lehman College, Luis is majoring in Anthropology with a minor in Sociology and hopes to pursue Cultural Anthropology at the graduate level and in due time the field of medicine. He has interned at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, where he had a remarkable experience with cancer patients. Luis is co-coordinating the UndocuQueer Project and the Leadership Development committee. In his spare time, Luis likes to run and has an excessive drinking problem with coffee, especially during the Fall. Lately, he has become entangled with dance and doing splits.

Name: Melissa Garcia Velez
Title: Core Member / Co-Coordinator for Leadership Development
Bio:  Melissa is a native from Buga, Colombia and she moved to New York at the age of eight to reunite with her mother. She attended Richard R. Green High School of Teaching in which she spend her free time doing community service with New York Cares and mentoring students with College For Every Student, a program that aids students attend and graduate from college. She’s currently a Junior at CUNY Lehman College in the Honors Program and is majoring in Social Work with a double-minor in Sociology and Dance. Melissa began her involvement with the NYSYLC in 2010 and is currently a core member and co-coordinator of the Leadership Development Committee. She is a co-founder of the Lehman DREAM Team and a member of the Lehman President Service Corps. Melissa is a strong believer in social justice and equality and that is why she decided to take a stand to fight for immigrant rights and for the youth. Melissa is Undocumented, Unafraid and Unapologetic. During her free time, she’s usually in her room dancing and creating her own choreographs, as well as reading and/or writing. She LOVES the Fresh-Prince of Bel Aire and one of her favorite movie collections is Shrek.


Name: Dominique Hernandez-Briones
Title: Field Organizer
Bio: Dominique was born and raised in Ecuador. She moved to New York in 2004, where she graduated from high school. She is currently a student at Queens College and she is pursuing a BA in Psychology and a BFA in Art Studio. Her early organizing experience began as an intern with NYPIRG and a member of the QC Dream Team. As an NYSYLC member, Dominique wants to use her organizing skills to spread knowledge to immigrant youth about opportunities that would help them achieve their goals. She believes that life experiences make up an individual’s identity, rather than their immigration status. Dominique enjoys drawing, photography and loves Mercedes Sosa’s songs.

Name: Razeen Z.
Title: Campaign Organizer
Bio: Razeen was raised in Queens, New York where she has lived for the majority of her life. In high school, her interests were rather scattered, one of which led her to conduct original research on New York City’s bedbug infestation problem. This inspired her to create New York City’s first public bedbug awareness campaign which was later implemented by the NYC Department of Health. She graduated from Sarah Lawrence College, where she focused on post-colonial studies. She was active in APICAD as a college student and edited The Ninja, a student of color initiated newsletter. Razeen is the Advocacy Coordinator and END coordinator for the YLC. She has worked on the New York DREAM Act for more than a year and is determined to see the bill passed during the upcoming legislative session. She is also the point person for YLC’s Education Not Deportation program. She think it’s obvious that most, if not all, undocumented youth belong to Gryffindor House.
Name: Rodolfo D.
Title: Finance Administor
Bio: Born and raised in Mexico, Rodolfo came to the United States at the age of 12. Rodolfo found the transition into the United States to be easy, but difficult when it came to making friends and learning the language. He graduated from Baruch College from the School of Business, Zickin. When he joined the NYSYLC 5 years ago he started out as an active member and years later, he became actively involved with the Media and Outreach committee by helping design flyers. His passion for equality and finance is what keeps him actively involved in the YLC.