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Samantha Alexandra Martinez

Samantha Martinez smiles to camera.

Scholar Samantha Alexandra Martinez from University of Chicago Scholars 2021-2022.

Co-Founder, Gage Park Latinx Council


Samantha Martinez is a first-generation, immigrant queer artist and co-founder of the Gage Park Latinx Council (GPLXC), the first community-led Cultural Center in Gage Park. Samantha develops and facilitates youth programs at GPLXC to create culturally affirming spaces where young people of color can imagine and lead change in their communities. In 2020, Samantha also co-founded GPLXC’s Mercadito, a free community market stocked with food and hygiene items that is visited by more than 90 residents every week. Samantha’s community-based work is led through an intersectional and anti-oppressive framework that considers the multiple intersections of oppression that impact the lives and experiences of Latinx, undocumented, and low-income people in Chicago.

Samantha is pursuing her master’s degree from the Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice at the University of Chicago.

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More About the Scholars Program


More About the Scholars Program

The Obama Foundation Scholars program gives rising leaders from around the world who are already making a difference in their communities the opportunity to take their work to the next level.

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