CNT Welcomes New Project Associate Paulina Vaca

Nearly a month into my work at Center for Neighborhood Technology, I already sense the power of community-based partnerships among organizations in Chicago. I am constantly inspired by not only these connections but also my brilliant coworkers. Whether in the office or working remotely, daily critically-thought conversations and operations surrounding justice and equity are held. As Latinx myself, I am increasingly conscious of the spaces I am in. In this space, I look around and see people of color included in tackling urban issues that affect other minoritized groups.

Already, I have begun supporting projects centered around equity. These projects include climate resiliency retrofits on affordable housing in Evanston, comprehensive home rehabilitation programs in Aurora, and updating equitable transit-oriented development tools.

As my supervisor told me, I was brought onto CNT partly because the team believes I have a voice. In truth, we all do. Yet, it is my personal undertaking to grow into my voice in the context of my new role at CNT.

I graduated from Loyola University Chicago’s School of Environmental Sustainability earlier this year, cultivating my passion for environmental justice. As I continue this path, I acknowledge that there is no environmental justice without social justice. I am profoundly honored to be doing this scope of work. Likewise, I am simply thrilled to be kick-starting my career with CNT.

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