"Anyone can succeed, they just need the tools and the opportunity. 
And your job on earth is to help at least one person - just one individual - 
and make sure she/he has the tools and the opportunity."

- Hyram Montero


Meet Deborah Ramirez
 
Though Deborah Ramirez isn't technically an immigrant, she knows better than most what it's like to move between two cultures.
 
Born in the U.S. to Puerto Rican parents, her family returned to the island when Deborah was 12. She went from all-English in school to all-Spanish; from a big school with many amenities to a small, rural setting where many of her classmates were very poor.
 
"I know what it is to sit in the and classroom look up at the blackboard and not recognize anything," she says of her adjustment to life in Puerto Rico. "I know that feeling."
 
At the age of 21, she returned to the U.S. to get her master's degree in journalism at Columbia University. By then, NYC was unfamiliar to the self-described island girl, and she had to acclimate all over again.
 
While she was born in the U.S., her moves back and forth gave her an intimate understanding of the immigrant experience. "I come from Puerto Rico, which is part of the United States, but it's a place with its own culture, history, and language. Moving between two cultures and two languages has enriched my life in many ways."
 



Meet Adriana Carrera
 
As a little girl growing up in Ecuador, Adriana Carrera used to write editorials and make her own newspapers. Her mom told her she should study journalism - and that's exactly what she did. Now, she runs La Familia de Broward, a Spanish-language publication of her own creation that helps families in Broward County get the information they need.
 
Adriana first came to the U.S. at the age of 30. She was already a professional journalist, and moved from Ecuador to NYC to be with her then-fiancee, now-husband Ivan. She was the first in her family to emigrate to the U.S. and for her, moving to Manhattan was like dropping a kid in a candy store.
 
"There was so much to discover because it's a glimpse of the world' s cultures," she says. "The fact that many Hispanics live in New York gave me the opportunity to not only to continue my career, but to really launch it."
 
After her daughter Carolina was born, the family decided to move to Miami. Adriana's husband flew out a month ahead, and she and little Carolina took flight from NYC to reunite with him on September, 11, 2001.
 
"We flew at the same time the hijacked planes were impacting the Twin Towers," Adriana recalls.
"As a journalist, I would have been assigned to Ground Zero and seen the falling of the second tower - as some of my traumatized colleagues did - but God had other plans for us." 


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in honor of
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