Pathways to Political Leadership Fellow: Martina Cruz [Photos]

Document Type


Publication Date



women of color, political participation, political leadership, women of color leaders, political office, Massachusetts, elective office, photographs, Women's Pipeline for Change


American Politics | Gender and Sexuality | Politics and Social Change | Public Policy | Race and Ethnicity | Race, Ethnicity and Post-Colonial Studies | Women's Studies


With over 15 years of experience working with low-income families, especially those who have children with disablities, Martina Cruz was selected as one of five Women's Pipeline for Change Research Fellow Research Fellows at UMASS Boston's Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy precisely for her dedication to issues in underserved communities. Originally from the Dominican Republic, Martina was driven by her values to work on women's, immigrant, labor, and education issues after realizing that to "love your neighbor" means changing society for the better. She became a parent activist strongly advocating for quality education in Lawrence, Massachusetts where she served in the School Committee for three terms. Martina's research question focuses on the political motivations of women of color, wondering why more women of color community leaders are not engaged in the political process. She is mainly interested in how values impact entry to the political arena.

This link includes photos of Martina Cruz and her Political Motivations of Women Color Leaders: Existing Challenges project.