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Hispanic Heritage Month Employee Spotlights: Benjamin Menchelli
This Hispanic Heritage Month, members of the Latinx, Hispanic, and Multicultural Employee Resource Group at National Wildlife Federation are coming together to share our stories — in our own words. Join us as we explore the complexities of our identities throughout the month.
Name: Benjamin Menchelli
Position: Digital Marketing Coordinator
What interests you about conservation?
It’s how we can ensure that there are still wild lands for future generations to enjoy just like we did, and the generations before us. It’s our responsibility to protect these spaces and the animals that inhabitant it through conservation.
How would you describe your cultural identity? How do you identify yourself? Why?
I describe my cultural identity as Peruvian. I was born in Lima and when my family immigrated to Miami, we settled down in a largely Latinx community so I grew up speaking Spanish everywhere I went and only interacting with other Latinx people.
Because of this, I feel strongly connected to my heritage and I practice my culture every day to ensure it lives on no matter where I am.
How did you end up at the National Wildlife Federation?
I found National Wildlife Federation when I was looking to return to the nonprofit world after spending a few years working in corporate jobs. I had always wanted to work in a company that is actively working to make our world a better place and now more than ever, it’s vital we do everything we can to preserve our public lands and wildlife.
What does Hispanic Heritage Month mean to you?
Hispanic Heritage Month is both a celebration and an opportunity to embrace our culture and heritage. It’s a time for understanding and appreciating those who came before me and created opportunities for us who followed. I want to do the same for the generations to come, and am always looking for ways to give back to my culture.
What is one thing you want others to know about Latinidad?
That we are all different; there are over 30 countries in Latin America so there is no singular version of Latinidad that exists.