For the past 13 years, she has been a community activist and organizer advocating for policies to protect and include marginalized communities. In 2007, she entered the world of community organizing while in college, after learning that authorities were threatening to deport a young, undocumented mother in urgent need of medical attention. Adriana fundraised enough money for the woman’s care and founded the Juliana Mateo Foundation for Disabled Farmworkers.
As a Florida resident, she taught at UnidosNow.org and established the Future Leaders Academy for Youth. Adriana stood alongside Manatee County teachers as they rallied for better pay and she worked collaboratively with non-profits statewide to successfully stop Florida from passing its own version of SB-1070. Three years later, Adriana received the NAACP’s 2013 Unsung Heroine Award for her community activism.
Since moving to Minneapolis in 2013, Adriana’s efforts include successfully working to fire a cop guilty of racial profiling in Chaska, collaboratively giving Know Your Rights presentations to communities and teaching an American Basic Civics Program to involve youth in political processes. In 2017, she introduced the Sanctuary Now platform before Minneapolis City Council to protect immigrant and refugee rights. For the last two and a half years, Adriana has actively organized alongside parents at Emerson and other district schools, while working as a family advocate.
Aside from her passionate career in activism and advocacy, Adriana is a mother, grandmother, guardian and business owner.