Latin Times Magazine: Where are you and your family from? What is your Hispanic heritage? Frances Colón: Puerto Rico
Latin Times Magazine: Tell us about what you do for a living and how you got into it
Frances Colón: I’m a science diplomat and science communicator. I consult for governments to ensure they implement evidence-based decision-making, and I make science easy to understand for the public do they can make better decisions for their families and loved ones. I always wanted to use my PhD in Biology to ensure science was serving society so I have dedicated my science career to shaping and implementing people-centered policies.
Latin Times Magazine: In your industry, what would you say separates you from your competition Frances Colón: I have over 14 years of policy experience and of communicating science to the public in English and Spanish. I merge this with a deep understanding of the Latino community’s concerns and needs.
Latin Times Magazine: During Covid-19, tell us about your Biggest Challenge/obstacle and how you overcame it/or are overcoming it Frances Colón: I was scheduled for an interview at a prominent university the week of the first shutdown in South Florida that should have resulted in a new contract. Everything was postponed indefinitely, and I had to adapt to the new normal. I made a hard pivot to consultion COVID matters and use my knowledge of the Latino community, and diplomacy skills, to lead a strategy for mobilizing voters for the upcoming election.
Latin Times Magazine: Tell us about your biggest achievement, and how you achieved it (Covid or non-related) Frances Colón: In 2017 I made the decision to leave my job in foreign policy and come back home to Florida. I believed my understanding of how government works would be of most use at the local level advocating for better policies to address climate change, immigration, and economic inequality. Three years later, I am fully integrated into the Miami community and fighting alongside committed business leaders, elected officials, community organizers, students and neighbors. Reinventing myself, from an international focus to working at the local district level, has given me a real understanding of who is impacted by our decisions back in Washington DC and why this top-down approach needs to change. This experience has transformed my views of how to achieve real systems change that can improve people’s lives. This is my biggest achievement to date.
Latin Times Magazine: What is next for you? What can people expect to see from you? Frances Colón: We face serious challenges from climate change in Florida like heat waves, intense storms, and sea-level rise. I will be part of a new era of bold, innovative, and fact-based policy-making that will help Floridians confront the climate crisis that is already here and ensure a sustainable and resilient future.
Latin Times Magazine: What words of encouragement can you offer? Frances Colón: The pandemic has made a lot of us reassess not only our professional goals given the economic crisis brough about by COVID, but also our personal relationships. We are spending more time in our pods with family and loved ones and have been forced to consider what matters and how we want to live and love moving forward. Allow this challenging time to transform you and embrace the learnings and discoveries it has gifted you.
Latin Times Magazine: What is YOUR comida Latina favorita? Frances Colón: Arroz con pollo