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Impacting over

14 LAUSD campuses;  6 CSU's;

2 UC's... & 7,300+ enrolled


Embracing Latina Leadership AllianceS (ELLAS) is a 501(C)(3) nonprofit corporation established in 2003. It’s a mentoring and leadership program whose mission is to facilitate academic, STEM and leadership opportunities to underprivileged Latina youth that encourages the pursuit of a higher education. ELLAS curriculum empowers the youth by hosting workshops and annual conferences with successful Latina women and community role models that have faced similar life experiences.



Pilar Pinel

Founder | President

ELLAS Century

Ms. Pinel a forty-three year resident of the City of Long Beach, California and founder of Embracing Latina Leadership AllianceS (ELLAS), a college bound non- profit 501(c)(3) organization facilitating role-models and leadership programs that expand academic and career paradigm among underprivileged “C” average and above high school Latinas. Ms. Pinel’s leadership in supporting women of diversity demonstrates the importance of giving back to our communities and the importance of investing in future generations as an invaluable tool leading too parity and economic growth within underserved communities.A dedication that has gained national, international, state, congressional and local awards that include but not limited to: United States of America Presidential “Point of Light” Award # 4749; Los Angeles NFL Ram’s & Hispanic Heritage Community Impact Award; People en Español 25 Mujeres Mas Podorosas; L’Oréal Paris Woman of Worth Award; L.A. County 4th District Supervisor’s Woman of the Year Award; 2005 United States House of Representatives, Special Congressional Recognition Award; 17th Annual American Business Womens Association Vision Award; Soroptimist Community Leadership Award; Harvard School of Business… Her extensive community and professional contributions throughout the County of Los Angeles personifies her professional posture, leadership and commitment to the upward mobility of underserved communities.

A graduate from California State Polytechnic University at Pomona, Rafaela successfully holds her Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering as a first-generation college graduate. After graduating Ms. Diaz began working for Transtech Engineers, a civil engineering consulting company that works with various Southern California cities in their Building, Safety, and Planning Departments. In 2014, Rafaela then went on to work for Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas), a subsidiary of Sempra Energy, as an engineer where she was able to contribute to the public safety of our communities by being a part of one of the company’s largest capital project which involves maintaining the overall safety of SoCalGas'; pipeline system. In her most recent role at SoCalGas, Rafaela helps corporate-wide teams within the company and oversees their participation in regulatory proceedings before the California Public Utilities Commission as a Regulatory Case Manager.

Rafaela Diaz (3).png

Rafaela Diaz

Vice President

Civil Engineer | So Cal Gas


Nancy Correa

Board Member

Born and raised in Long Beach, California, Nancy Correa received her Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish Translation and Interpretation from Cal State University Long Beach in 2013. During her fourth year at CSULB she interned for Univision Los Angeles local television stations KMEX 34 and KFTR 46 in the community affairs department. 


Correa joined the Univision Los Angeles company as a full time employee in 2015 as an Account Coordinator and worked closely with the local radio stations. After two years, she transition to the Digital and Social Media Marketing team as the Social Media Content Creator. She successfully helped execute multiple branded content campaigns and monitor engagement, cultivate and increase growth of station social media platforms across various verticals. After one year, Ms. Correa relocated to Univision Bay Area and joined their News Department as a Digital Content Producer. After covering various local stories and breaking news, she’s a nominee for an Emmy Award, an American award that recognizes excellence in the television industry.  


As the first in her family to receive a college degree, she understand the impact and necessity of providing resources to young at-risk students and enjoys giving back to her community. Ms. Correa also serves as a volunteer for United Friends of the Children (UFC), a non-profit organization dedicated to bettering the lives of foster children, a special passion-point of hers as a former foster youth. She enjoys traveling, eating tasty food and spending quality time with her family and friends.

Mrs. Rosa Ong a life long resident of Los Angeles, California graduated from UC Riverside in 2012 and holds her degree in Anthropology. With a passion for helping others she volunteered for various non profit organizations including Muscular Dystrophy Association, Riverside Community Hospital and Habitat for Humanity. 


That same passion lead her directly into the financial industry after college where she has spent the last 8 years in the community as a financial educator helping children and families plan for their financial futures. She has personally implemented hundreds of policies which have collectively saved her clients millions of dollars. 


Today she works as a financial educator/ marketing director for TFA (TransAmerica Financial Advisors) where she is building a highly professional team with a focus and passion for reaching out to underserved communities. Their mission is to assist families in gaining financial literacy and teaching strategies to create and preserve generational wealth.


Rosa Gomez


Financial Educator & Marketing Director | TransAmerica



Patricia Martinez

Teacher Engagement & Curriculum

Teacher | McBride High School


Melissa Demirci


Civil Engineer | Transtech Engineers, Inc.


Glenda Silva

Programs/ Strategic Alliances

Deputy Director | Office of Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams


Mayra Galarza

Creative Services

Mortgage | American Home Loans


Angie Correa

Women Empowerment (Corp.)

Life Coach | Entrepreneur





VICE PRESIDENT (2010-2019)




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