Born to Salvadoran and Belizean immigrant parents in Los Angeles, California, Natalie grew up understanding the value of responsibility and family. As a second-grader, her mother abandoned her family, leaving her with the responsibility of raising her 2-year-old sister and becoming her father’s right hand. For over 10 years, she’s learned and created her own resilience and motivation. As a first-generation American, she is often reminded of her dad’s immigrant sacrifices and its impact on the importance of her education. As she grew up, she was faced with the challenges of health inequity – learning how to schedule doctor’s appointments and translate medical terminology for her family before the age of 10. Having faced health inequity firsthand, she knew she wanted to make a change. Joining and leading health equity groups within Denver Health and Denver Public Schools (DPS) has led her to discover her passions. Now she is an aspiring physician (OB/GYN) and writer with hopes to widen access to healthcare and share her perspective through writing. As a Greenhouse Scholar, Natalie plans to expand her horizons and lead by example that your losses don’t define you, they empower you.
- Denver Health Community Board- Youth Advisor
- Denver Citywide Marching Band- Color Guard Captain
- Denver Public Health: Southwest Denver Youth Leader