Blanca Acevedo

Blanca Acevedo is the program coordinator for the TRIO Upward Bound program at Northeastern Illinois University. Ms. Acevedo holds a Master of Arts degree in Higher Education from the ENLACE  leadership program at NEIU. She currently works to develop 21st-century skills through the use of STEM/STEAM innovation to low-income and first-generation communities. She is a state, regional and national best practice presenter providing professional development on how to infuse maker education activities into the classroom. Ms. Acevedo serves as the co-chair for the University Roundtable of Gamaliel of Metro Chicago and the Legislation and Education co-chair for the Illinois TRIO professional Association. As a first-generation, DACA recipient and daughter of immigrants, she is committed to serving underrepresented populations in Chicago’s Southwest area, Cicero & Berwyn. 

Alex M. Garcia
Alex joined the Pilsen Neighbors Community Council (PNCC) in 2016 as a Chairperson for a Town Hall Meeting with the Illinois State Police to discuss their statewide enforcement of the Trust Act. While he came to the organization with little community organizing experience, he brought a wealth of finance, auditing, and accounting knowledge. Since then, he has overseen 5 restorative justice expos and led multiple leadership meetings.
After starting his professional career as an Accounting Supervisor for CNA Insurance, Alex transitioned into the public sector as the Manager of a public CPA firm, where he gained most of his experience and knowledge for over 12 years. He currently serves as the Chief Financial Officer & Director of Operations for a non-profit organization on the West Side of Chicago. As the CFO & Director of Ops, Alex defines and implements the infrastructure and systems needed to support substantial growth for the organization.
Alex serves as a Board Member for PNCC, SAY of Chicago (a youth soccer league), Treasurer for his local parish, and Vice-President of the Local School Council for Galileo Scholastic Academy.
In his spare time, he enjoys the outdoors with his 13-year-old child and Golden Retriever. He’s risk-averse by day, and a risk-taker by night.