Research & Evaluation, STBF
Mariela Bahena is passionate about advancing immigration rights and reproductive justice. As an undergraduate student, she was heavily involved with local nonprofits in the South Omaha community, working closely to support efforts in education, civic engagement, and health. She previously served as Community Engagement Coordinator to the Office of Latino/Latin American Studies at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO). In her role, she helped strengthen and develop community partnerships and foster relationships with UNO students and the Latino immigrant population in South Omaha and Council Bluffs. Mariela went on to receive her Master of Public Health degree in maternal and child health from the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) in 2019. In the course of her studies, Mariela participated in and led trips to Latin American countries to distribute medical supplies, coordinate WASH interventions, and co-lead research projects. Mariela continues her commitment to community service, having volunteered for organizations like Planned Parenthood and Nebraska AIDS Project. She has also been a frequent volunteer for the Binational Health Week community fair, working as a patient navigator, Spanish interpreter, and HIV testing counselor. Currently, Mariela works as a Research and Evaluation Associate at The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation.