Carlos Adolfo Gonzalez is currently the Associate Director of ACLAMO Family Centers, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing social services and educational programs to Latinos and other low-income residents in Norristown and Pottstown. As a beneficiary of DACA, his commitment to justice and service is rooted in his experience living undocumented.
After college, Carlos explored diverse approaches to stimulate social change working at the grassroots, within the government, and in the nonprofit sector. He mobilized unlikely voters to affirm raising the minimum wage in Illinois before drafting a federal policy to facilitate immigrant integration at the U.S. House of Representatives. He then resettled Cuban parolees at Church World Service. He also led advocacy efforts for the Pennsylvania DREAM Act and coordinated the first statewide conference of undocumented youth in Pennsylvania.
Propelled by curiosity and a desire to broaden his perspective, Carlos participated in graduate programs that took him across the world. The election of Donald Trump heightened the risks of international travel for DACA recipients. Mindful that leadership requires courage, Carlos chose to continue his studies as act of resistance. From abroad, he authored opinion pieces in the New York Times, The Conversation, and Mitú challenging the Trump Administration’s anti-immigrant policies. He also shared his story in a national CNBC documentary to inspire the general public to action.
Upon returning to Pennsylvania, Carlos worked diligently to increase access to legal services for undocumented immigrants, build immigrant leadership, and civically engage new citizens as the Statewide Capacity Building Coordinator at the Pennsylvania Immigration & Citizenship Coalition.
Carlos is the only undocumented American appointed to serve in public roles in Pennsylvania. He serves on the Lancaster City Redevelopment Authority, the Lancaster City Property Reinvestment Board, and the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Latino Affairs, the commonwealth’s leading advocacy body for its one million Latino residents.
He holds an Associates of Arts in Social Sciences from Harrisburg Area Community College and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Interdisciplinary Studies from Amherst College. He also holds a Master of Philosophy from the University of Cambridge as a Gates Cambridge Scholar and a Master of Management Sciences from Tsinghua University as a Schwarzman Scholar.
Carlos is originally from the Dominican Republic and was raised in Lancaster, PA. When in need of a respite from politics, Carlos enjoys photography, traveling, and dancing to various genres of Latino music.