The Global Mexican – Marina Garcia-Vasquez

Racial Profiling Book: The New Global Mexican. Photo courtesy of Marina Garcia-Vasquez.

Racial Profiling Book: The New Global Mexican. Photo courtesy of Marina Garcia-Vasquez.

by Yesenia Cardona

I caught up with Marina over coffee at Fremont Diner in Sonoma during one of her quick visits back home to the Bay Area.  When she moved to New York she was inspired to create MexntheCity – a blog that speaks about the increasing Mexican culture in the fast-paced New York landscape.  It has since expanded out to include the recently funded Kickstarter photo project called “Racial Profiling” which explores the creative contributions of Mexicans globally.

Here is what she had to share with me:

YC: How would someone describe you and your work?

Photo of Marina Garcia-Vasquez. Image courtesy of Marina Garcia-Vasquez.

Photo of Marina Garcia-Vasquez. Image courtesy of Marina Garcia-Vasquez.

MGV: I like to say that I am writer first and foremost. From journalist to copywriter, I am an ideas person with an interest in design and culture. I still report and work as a freelance journalist but I am also a brand strategist and social media specialist. For Mex And the City, I am responsible for creating cultural campaigns from event concepts, to branded collaborations.

YC: What motivated you to move to New York?

MGV: I moved to New York after having worked as a journalist in San Francisco. I felt that I had worked for wonderful publications and worked as an investigative reporter, business reporter, Latino media producer, and managed a global culture magazine. Essentially, I felt like I had done all I could do in SF and to leap to the next level, I wanted to be in a greater city. Traditionally NY is the capital of journalism. So I needed to be there.

YC: Why was creating MexntheCity in New York important to you?

Founders of MexntheCity. Photo courtesy of Marina Garcia-Vasquez.

Founders of MexntheCity. Photo courtesy of Marina Garcia-Vasquez.

MGV: I created M&TC between jobs and during the 2008 recession. I met with the entrepreneurs around me who I considered friends and mentors to pick their brains about new professional opportunities. A respected friend who owned a large and successful Mexican supper club asked me what I was most passionate about and without hesitation I said “educating New Yorkers about Mexican culture.” It was a gut response. And for the next few months I worked to enlist friends who would be willing to share their NYC experiences in an open platform.

YC: What’s the best thing that’s happened to you since creating MexntheCity?

MGV: A lot of wonderful things have transpired since creating M&TC. Personally I went back to grad school at Columbia Journalism School as it had always been a dream. My thesis was a long form article about art intervention movements and artists in Mexico City. Mexico never leaves me.

YC: What’s Racial Profiling and who was your favorite?

MGV: Racial Profiling is an editorial series I developed to show the professional successes of Mexicans in New York, highlight the diversity in identity, and work with the photographer Carlos Alvarez Montero to present a beautiful portrait and product. We started the series to build our online community in real life. Now the series has reached about 100 profiles between New York, Mexico City, and Los Angeles. We are working on publishing a book called Racial Profiling: The New Global Mexican. There are so many brilliant people highlighted but my favorite aspect of the series is showing the diversity of identities from cholos to scientists to Mexican Japanese.

YC: Who’s your dream person to include in Racial Profiling?

MGV: Our goal is to highlight Mexicans who would normally not get mainstream press or to highlight individuals who mainstream press don’t already know are Mexican so I would love to include someone like Louis CK or everyday women who are committed to the arts and expressing themselves

YC: What would you want to ask them?

MGV: What motivates you? What is your passion? I always try to include an opportunity for readers to pick up knowledge and experience from these personal stories.

YC: Tell me about Movement Makers?

MGV: Movement Makers is an extracurricular high school pilot program I created with educator Veronica Benavides in New York City. We wanted to make an impact on the Mexican student population so we created a class to teach leadership skills through digital media skills, Latino literature, ethnic studies, and history.

YC: Why was it important for you to include it as part of MexntheCity?

MGV: For the resources! We have so many dynamic Latino’s as part of our network we wanted to leverage our professional platform and show our students the diversity of experience we have. We wanted to show them to lead by example, to find power in their identity, and that their professional dreams can come true.

YC: Ok – What’s your superpower?

MGV: My superpower is distilling a message. If a symbol could be actualized.

YC: If MexntheCity had a superpower what would you want it to be?

MGV: An ability to give a chin-up when others feel defeated, rejected, not accepted.

YC: If you could write a message on a billboard that everyone who passed by could read and be impacted by – what would your billboard say?

MGV: Your Voice Is Important. Use It. ♦

Yesenia Cardona is a Life Coach, gifted Light Healer, and single mother.   If she had a personal motto it would be “Love Yourself, Love Others”.   Her spiritual practice of opening her heart to receive the Creator’s love and sharing it with others creates the foundation of her coaching, healing and meditation work.  By focusing on the Divine spark and the Creators love within all of her clients she is able to help them create powerful, positive, loving changes in their lives. Yesenia studied Advertising and Chicano Studies at San Jose State.  She worked in the corporate world for 17 years in London, San Francisco and New York until she decided to commit herself to being of service to others.  She is a CTI trained life coach and for the past 8 years she has been studying and practicing her healing gifts under the tutelage of Alba Ambert, founder of the Paramita Path (, a heart based spiritual practice and healing modality.  She currently lives in Napa, CA with her daughter.   For more information about Yesenia and her work visit or you can contact her at