Latino Policy Institute at RWU Names New Director

Gabriela Domenzain brings national experience in Latino policy, politics and the press

Woman speaks on broadcast news
Gabriela Domenzain, the new director of the Latino Policy Institute at RWU, is a sought-after political commentator, appearing on shows like this MSNBC segment on southern politics.
Public Affairs Staff

BRISTOL, R.I. ­­– The Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University on Thursday announced that Gabriela Domenzain will become LPI’s new director on Aug. 15.

Domenzain brings to the job a broad range of experience in policy, politics and the press, plus a wealth of knowledge about issues involving Latinos and immigration.

In 2015 and 2016, she worked as deputy campaign manager for former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley’s presidential campaign, serving as his chief spokesperson on immigration policy and Latino issues. She was a principal in The Raben Group, the nation’s largest majority-minority progressive consulting firm, based in Washington, D.C. And she was the principal spokesperson on immigration and the Latino vote for the Obama for America 2012 campaign.

In 2010 and 2011, Domenzain was the communications director for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. From 2006 to 2010, she worked for the Univision National Network, the most-watched Spanish-language network in the United States, and while there she was founding producer for the country’s first Spanish-language Sunday political talk show, “Al Punto” with Jorge Ramos. She graduated from the University of Chicago with a bachelor’s degree in public policy and from New York University with a master’s degree in journalism.

“I am delighted to welcome Gabriela Domenzain to the Roger Williams University family,” RWU President Donald J. Farish said. “She has a national reputation as a spokesperson for Latino issues and couples a first-rate education with excellent political connections. Gabriela will be an outstanding leader for the Latino Policy Institute.”

The Latino Policy Institute is housed in the School of Continuing Studies, at RWU’s Providence campus.

“I am excited that we found such a wonderful individual to lead the Latino Policy Institute,” said Jamie Scurry, dean of the RWU School of Continuing Studies and an LPI board member. “Gabriela not only has an impressive track record, she is engaging, committed and dedicated to bringing her knowledge and experience to continue the advancement of the LPI and its policy and research agenda and goals. Under Gabriela’s leadership, the LPI will thrive and the voices of the Latino community will ring loud and strong.”

LPI board co-chair Paola Fernandez said, “The Latino Policy Institute board is thrilled to have found someone with Gabriela's experience, enthusiasm and deep knowledge of the Latino community. Gabriela comes to Rhode Island with an impressive 20-year track record of advocating for and representing the Latino community on the national stage. Her insight and expertise comes at the right time as LPI seeks to further advance our agenda to stimulate public policy discussions and enhance the public's understanding of the Rhode Island Latino experience.”

Domenzain said, “When we talk about the Latino population, it's too often in a context of the anxiety some feel over our changing demographics. I'm thrilled to be joining the Latino Policy Institute at Roger Williams University to help Rhode Islanders appreciate not only the challenges Latinos face but their vast contributions to Rhode Island's economy and cultural richness.”

The Latino Policy Institute at RWU is committed to generating and communicating data to stimulate public policy discourse and enhance the public's understanding of the Rhode Island Latino experience. With this information, Latinos’ social, economic and civic contributions to the state can be better documented, understood and engaged.