De'Ara Balenger, Director of Engagement, 30ish
Her role in the campaign:
"It's basically all over the place. One, because that's the nature of it, and two, I never stay in my own lane. My primary job is to make sure that Hillary Clinton's and President Clinton's longtime friends are all happy [as they join the campaign trail] — so that means her friends from when she was a girl and all the way up through high school, Wellesley College, Arkansas, first lady. The 'Clinton friends,' we call them."
"I am Blaxican — African American and Mexican — and have a very mixed family. The Mexican part is what always anchored us. My family's from St. Paul, MN, on the west side, where all the Mexicans live. My great-grandmother was a migrant worker and the matriarch to our family. I was born into a family of activists."
What working with a large group of Latinos on the campaign means to her:
"I feel blessed to work with these phenomenal people. We make her a better candidate when we have diversity of thought. On the other hand, I feel a personal obligation to all the people of color who work on the campaign: making sure that they have the experience that is reflective of the principles and values that Hillary Clinton holds dear. I try to make sure to give people the space so that they can give their opinions and they can feel supported."
"We have this one mission, and everybody is working as hard as they possibly can and with the best intentions to make that happen. Sometimes we get on each other's nerves, and sometimes we have our own implicit biases that come out, but we're a family now. How do we work through these things and make sure that we're all OK and performing the best for her? Because she's out there every effing day working so hard. By the way, she's dope."