An example of Improvement and Hope

by Talia Rodriguez

Some of us don’t have the luxury to be scared. You ever been too poor, Or too tired, Or too sad, Or too somethin’ To be scared? Like when everyone else (whose right minded) would be scared you are not and, you step forward cus you already getting beat down, what’s another one? A fighter is a fighter half way through the fight you know.

What is it to live a personal hell so severe that state troopers, shotguns, white supremacists and German Shepherds -look like a walk in the park? I’m not saying she wasn’t scared but the trip to DC was the only time she ever got away from my abuelo.

The bus, charted by (Gilberto Valentin the most important Puerto Rican you never heard about) was yellow -stepping on the stairs with my 5-year-old father in hand – a civil rights advocate and domestic violence victim- Simultaneously.

Couldn’t fight for herself at home but was fighting Jim Crow in the south. She and 30,000 people were too beat down to be scared of hate changed the world but we still fighting and as her granddaughter.

Right now Latinas, we too poor to be scared. It’s a go time. It’s a stand up for your sister cus “if you’re going to talk to her like that you’re going to talk to me like that time”, its “what would your mother say” time, it’s time to call it out. We need to celebrate gentlemen-Don’t roll your eyes at me as you read this and text your toxic-ex we all have them girls. It’s time to free our sons of toxic patriarchy- no sweat (for me that comes in between baseball and chicken nuggets) but nevertheless…

The work though, its serious and motivation – for my grandmother- came from her believe in the transformational power of the love of Jesus Christ and I honor that.

Lucila Matos, preaches love and Christ. When they call the leaders (just like my grandmother) she steps forward. Confidently in every step there’s a brown leather sandal of Jesus, its inside their shoe print they walk so close to him.

Owner of Taina Soy, a faith leader she has expanded her ministry to business. She creates jewelry that celebrates and preserves our unique Puerto Rican culture – specifically our indigenous heritage. She smiles like the sun, it’s hard to explain until you see her beaming back at you pumping all the positive energy of Christs forgiveness into the atmosphere.

“Christian” is an action word. She knows it. Plus, Lucila means light. Christian light, holding the hope in the dark, Lucila Matos.

Quantum Physics teaches that nothing is fixed, that there are no limitations, that everything is vibrating Energy. And that everything is in a state of potential.

You, us, we are in a state of potential, as the largest group of female workers in the United States we are the potential.

Lucila Matos’s ministry builds community, she has the power to join people in spirit, to convene, to bring forth a group of God’s children in action, and to guide that action to improve the lives of others and that is what will fuel her business success.

Lucila’s continued success is evidence there is a distinct space for business people whose mission and purpose are motivated by their faith. She also, happens to be the founder of the first Domestic Violence Awareness Walk Rochester has ever held.

August 20th, 11 days before what would have been my grandmothers 99th birthday and three years since my grandmother’s passing, meet me and Lucila in Rochester to continue to make Latinaherstory. Take la Doña… And if you can’t join us in person, be sure to join us digitally. TAG US! Set your own route, WEAR PINK, check in, and we will share you and your message! We are together even when we are far away.

Read below Lucila’s full interview and learn about one Latina that is living in Christ and the Founder of the first walk against Domestic Violence in Rochester, New York.

1. Where were you born and what were the values in your home? I was born and raised in Ponce, Puerto Rico. Ponce is a beautiful town in the south of Puerto Rico. I was raised with good Christian’s values, values of respect and kindness and love for others.

2. What was your experience like as a student? My experience as a student was good. A student always inclined to the arts. My favorite class was Social studies I had my struggles like a lot of teenagers, but my parents we’re always there for me.

3. What was your first or favorite job? This is a hard question, I think I am a natural caregiver, any job were I’m able to give, always will be my favorite. A job where I am a source of help or hope that is a job for me. My first job was I work for the Airline Delta it’s fun

4. What advice do you have for other Latinas and people who want their voices to be heard? My best advice to others Latinas out there is to be focused, organized and consistent. Find other women with similar goals and be supportive. Encourage other woman’s, work together and work hard. But consistency is the real key, never give up! keep trying until you see results.

5. What is your theory on human potential? My theory about human potential is that all people is different with different goals values and abilities. we all have the potential to fight and meet our goals, grow and improve. Therefore, it is a quality whose training and results are very subjective. We can’t never base our success on other people success or compare our processes.

6. How do you define a business person? A business person for me is a visionary, a person with the ability to work hard to make a dream come true. A person that doesn’t give up no matter if your network is millions of dollars or a hundred dollars is a person that see an opportunity and goes for it.

7. Is there a business person and or mentor that you look up to and why? My mother will always be the person that I look up to and my mentor, Sonia Rodriguez always has been an example of a woman of God, a woman…

8. What does success look like for you? Success for me is been able to accomplish your expectations without changing your essence as a person. impact people in a positive way and be an example of improvement and hope. Success is not about material stuff, for me success is about to go a sleep every night satisfied and with a clear conscience.

Talia Rodriguez is a bi-racial, bi-cultural, and bi-lingual Latina from Buffalo. Ms. Rodriguez’s mission is to write about Latina’s, who have shaped the face of our city and our region. It is Ms. Rodriguez’s believes that our own people should inspire us and in telling our collective stories, we push our community forward. Ms. Rodriguez is a community advocate and organizer. She is a 5th generation West Sider, a graduate of SUNY Buffalo Law School, and an avid baseball fan. She lives on the West Side with her young son A.J… Ms. Rodriguez sits on the board of several organizations including the Belle Center, where she attended daycare. Ms. Rodriguez loves art, music, food, and her neighbors.

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