Immigrants Rising was created by Educators for Fair Consideration (E4FC) to encourage all immigrants, regardless of legal status, to create their own opportunities, earn a living, and thrive through entrepreneurship.
We recognize that the spirit of entrepreneurship is at the core of the American Dream and foundational to the growth of the U.S. economy. Immigrant entrepreneurs make important contributions across all sectors of the economy through innovation and perspectives that drive new ideas and promote social change. This is true for women and men selling goods and services in the formal and informal markets, lawyers starting their own law firms, immigrants thriving in the tech industry launching apps and websites, founders of nonprofit organizations, and all who hustle on a daily basis to do more with less.
Immigrants Rising provides resources, knowledge and financial support for immigrant entrepreneurs, regardless of legal status, at any stage of their journey. We provide a comprehensive overview of the entrepreneurship landscape in the U.S. through webinars, handouts and guides. We plan to add multimedia and additional content related non-profit organizations over the next few months. We are also working on a curated list of resources that will help you seek financial support and connect with other organizations that support entrepreneurship throughout the nation. We encourage you to read, share and use our resources to create your own opportunities and take control of your life!
Meet the Team
Iliana G. Perez
Head of Global Trends and Futuring
Iliana G. Perez was born in Hidalgo, Mexico and immigrated alongside her mother, father and younger brother to the U.S. at the age of eight. Iliana grew up in Turlock, CA and navigated the educational system as an undocumented student and earned a living as an independent contractor until she became a DACA recipient in 2013. Iliana holds a B.A. in Mathematics, M.A. in Economics and is completing a Ph.D. in Education, Policy, Evaluation and Reform at Claremont Graduate University. Iliana looks forward to helping all immigrants regardless of legal status reach their highest potential through entrepreneurship.
Dean was born in the Philippines. He arrived in the United States with his mother at the age of 12. As an undocumented immigrant, Dean never disclosed his status to anyone prior to being involved with immigrant rights because of the stigma associated with being undocumented. In the end of 2010, Dean was apprehended by Immigration Customs Enforcement and was sent to an immigration detention facility in Florence, AZ. Upon release, Dean was put into deportation proceedings.
This life-changing experience led Dean to become involved with immigrant rights-related issues. Dean became an outspoken advocate against collaborations between ICE and local law enforcement by sharing his experiences of being detained. He became a leader within ASPIRE, the first pan-Asian undocumented youth group in the nation, and California Immigrant Youth Justice Alliance, the coalition of thirteen undocumented youth groups throughout California. Dean obtained his bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Notre Dame de Namur and received the Political Science and History Department’s University Mission Award. Outside of immigrant rights, Dean is an avid cyclist and races cyclocross on occasion. He hopes to someday participate in the prestigious randoneé Paris-Brest-Paris.
Ambassador of Buzz
Marithza was born in Sonora, Mexico. She migrated to the U.S. at the age of 17 along with her parents. She learned English, earned a U.S. high school diploma and studied Graphic Design through the community adult programs in Los Angeles. She noticed the great impact adult education had in her life and her community and became an advocate for adult and career education. Working as a freelance graphic designer afforded her tuition to attend community college. As a Communications Consultant, Marithza brings over 15 years of experience in graphics, social and printed media to support young immigrants in their process to become creative professionals. Marithza loves museums, biking, and exploring the city on public transportation.
Expanding entrepreneurship opportunities for all immigrants regardless of legal status.