“Holding space means to be with someone without judgment. To donate your ears and heart without wanting anything back. To practice empathy and compassion. To accept someone’s truth, no matter what they are. To allow and accept. Embrace with two hands instead of pointing with one finger. To come in neutral. Open. For them. Not you. Holding space means to put your needs and opinions aside and allow someone to just be.”
David Johnson is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor and Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselor with experience in employee assistance programs, private practice, residential treatment centers, and more. He is Co-Chair, Latino Collaborative of the County of San Mateo Behavioral Health and Recovery Services, Office of Diversity and Equity.
David is happy to lend his expertise as a mental health professional to Proyecto Solace because he believes a more united Latinx community makes the world a better place.
Susana Benavidez is a Stanford Community Impact City Innovation Fellow and is currently on sabbatical. Formerly she was the Chief Strategy Officer and Head of AI at a govtech startup; a global business development executive focused on Technology & IP at a top global law firm; and a proud civil servant for the City of Los Angeles. Susana was raised in Boyle Heights, a working-class neighborhood in Los Angeles, CA.
Susana writes about her experiences as a domestic and sexual abuse survivor to normalize mental health in the Latinx community and share how transformative therapy, community, and medication can be.
Andrea Flores works in the entertainment industry at the intersection of technology and animation. She currently works on Disney’s The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder. In addition, Andrea was a founding Board Member at Techqueria, a nonprofit focused on networking and empowering professional growth for Latinx tech professionals.
Andrea is passionate about mindfully scaling the Proyecto Solace community to best serve individuals on their mental health and wellness journeys.
Ingrid Avendaño is an experienced software engineer working for a fintech startup that has worked at large and smaller tech companies, including Netflix, Uber, Cruise. She is an advocate of diversity in the tech ecosystem. Her current passion is sailing. Originally from Venezuela, Ingrid grew up in the Twin Cities, MN.
Ingrid is interested in mental health because of her experience with burnout in the tech industry and navigating work-life balance while in recovery.