‘Latinas in Motion’ Founder Encourages Healthy Habits Through Running

On a June afternoon in late 2012, Elaine Gonzalez Johnson, frustrated by running alone, sent a text to every woman in her phone and launched a nationwide movement.

‘I’m going to run two-and-a-half miles on Saturday at 7 AM,’ it read. ‘Will you join me?’

A month earlier, Johnson — now a 30-year-old full-time program manager in the Philadelphia school district — had stood at the starting line of her first-ever race, Philadelphia’s Broad Street Run, which touts itself as the largest 10-mile race in the country. Despite being in a crowd of over 35,000 fellow runners, she felt alone. “I didn’t see anybody who looked like me,” Johnson said. “There was such a lack of Latinas at this particular race.”

Johnson’s initial impression was not far off from the truth: despite their status as the country’s largest racial or ethnic minority, at 17.6% of the nation’s total population, Hispanics make up only a small portion of runners nationwide. In 2016, only 6 percent of overall runners surveyed identified as Hispanic, according to RunningUSA, a not-for-profit organization launched in 1999 which tracks developments in the sport through annual surveys and reports. And for women runners, the figures are even bleaker: barely 5 percent of female runners surveyed by the organization in 2014 identified as Hispanic.


Within weeks after the Broad Street Run, Johnson decided to take matters into her own hands. In June, a few days after she texted all the women she knew, six women showed up to meet her for an early morning two-and-a-half mile run at Abraham Lincoln High School in northeast Philadelphia. The group began to grow every week. And by August of that year, a chapter had sprung up in New Jersey. Latinas in Motion was born.

Almost five years later, the group boasts 4,000 members in 17 chapters across 14 states and in Puerto Rico, where Johnson’s family hails from. And Johnson has become the face of the movement, appearing on the cover of Women’s Running magazine last June.

Continue onto NBC News to read more about Latinas in Motion.

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‘Power Rangers’ to Feature LGBTQ Superhero in Becky G’s Trini

When Power Rangers morphs onto the screen this Friday, there are a lot of moments for viewers to see themselves reflected on the big screen. One of those moments comes in Trini, played by Becky G, and a momentary bit of dialogue that could easily be missed by viewers not on the lookout for it, but matters nonetheless.

As the newly-minted Rangers, who are strangers to each other before they find the coins and receive their powers, are bonding over a campfire one night, Ludi Lin’s character Zack asks Trini if she’s having “boyfriend problems.” The look on her face quickly shuts him down, but he amends the query into asking, “… girlfriend problems?” She doesn’t answer, either, but seems more at ease with him and the rest of the Rangers after that moment.

It’s a tiny bit of dialogue, to be sure, and one that isn’t really ever addressed in the rest of the movie. She also never explicitly identifies her sexuality or comes out, which is fine — some people choose not to label their sexuality, and that’s totally valid. But that can have powerful implications, especially when viewers who may be questioning their own sexuality see the movie. Instead, what we do see is this group of kids accept Trini for who she is; they don’t question or ridicule her at all, and that is powerful.

Director Dean Israelite told The Hollywood Reporter that “For Trini, really, she’s questioning a lot about who she is. She hasn’t fully figured it out yet. I think what’s great about that scene and what that scene propels for the rest of the movie is, ‘That’s OK.’ The movie is saying, ‘That’s OK,’ and all of the kids have to own who they are and find their tribe.”

Read more about this character on Teen Vogue.

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5 Eye-Opening Moments From This Moving Doc About Four Chileans With Down Syndrome

The most important thing is that you guys are responsible for your own lives.” The line comes early in Maite Alberdi’s documentary Los niños (The Grown-Ups). It is directed at a group of students at a Chilean school for people with Down Syndrome. But Ana, Ricardo, Andrés, and Rita aren’t children. Now in their forties, they all still attend the school though now they work in the kitchen as part of the catering department. They spend their days baking treats and sweets. Continue reading 5 Eye-Opening Moments From This Moving Doc About Four Chileans With Down Syndrome

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10 TV Pilots Starring Latinos We Hope Get Greenlit

Even as the television landscape splinters more and more as streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon continue to buck decades-long trends, there’s still nothing quite like pilot season. Every spring, after reviewing hundreds of pitches and scripts from aspiring (or established) TV writers, executives at the various networks choose a number of them they think have potential. They cast actors and then produce a pilot episode to see which of the story concepts might actually work on the air. Continue reading 10 TV Pilots Starring Latinos We Hope Get Greenlit

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You’ll Fall In Love With This Mariachi Version Of ‘Tale As Old As Time’

The Los Angeles ensemble performed a timely Mariachi-style rendition of “A Tale As Old As Time” from “Beauty and the Beast.” The remake, which comes just days before the live action film is set to premiere, replaces the film’s iconic dance scene with a version choreographed by Los Angeles’ Ballet Folklorico Company. Continue reading You’ll Fall In Love With This Mariachi Version Of ‘Tale As Old As Time’

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CODeLLA Aims to Teach Latina Girls Another Vital Language: Coding

Multilingual people have better opportunities in the workforce, giving Latino children who are fluent in Spanish as well as English a leg up as they compete for future employment. But the language of dashes, brackets and equal signs — in other words, coding —is one of the best weapons in a young person’s educational arsenal. Continue reading CODeLLA Aims to Teach Latina Girls Another Vital Language: Coding

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John Leguizamo’s ‘Latin History for Morons’ is an Urgent Call to Re-Learn Our Collective Past

The playbill for John Leguizamo’s latest, Latin History for Morons, includes a dedication that doubles as its inspiration. “To all the immigrants who made this country,” it reads, “and its original people whose spirit still run our lives unbeknownst to us.” Leguizamo’s newest solo show is an urgent call to re-learn our history, while embracing the messiness of the term “Latin.” The Ghetto Klown star, who was born in Colombia and raised in New York City, has long been a vocal critic of the erasure of Latino contributions to the making of the United States. “Without a past to glorify and uplift you, how do you propel yourself into an unknown, tenuous future?,” he recently asked in an October 2016 Op-Ed penned for the New York Times. Continue reading John Leguizamo’s ‘Latin History for Morons’ is an Urgent Call to Re-Learn Our Collective Past

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Latina Conferences: #WeAllGrow 2017 Unites Latina Entrepreneurs

Latinas are rapidly occupying a growing space in the digital world. They are entrepreneurs, content creators, bloggers, photographers, YouTubers, influencers. For the third year in a row, #WeAllGrow Summit, held in Long Beach, California, early this month gathered over 400 women who sought to either learn, teach, empower or simply connect with one another. Continue reading Latina Conferences: #WeAllGrow 2017 Unites Latina Entrepreneurs

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