Female Strong HRI: Meet the Incredible Women of HRI

Co-founded by two visionary Dallas women, led by women in every department, and administered by a thoroughly diverse, all-female+ identifying team, at HRI we don’t wait for a day or a month to celebrate women. Every day at HRI is Women’s Day.
Meet HRI’s fearless female staff. We asked our team if they had any affirmations or advice for their past, present or future selves – scroll through the images to read their thoughts and briefly about who they are.
Kristina Morales: Kristina is Dallas, Texas born and raised. She graduated from the University of North Texas where she received her Bachelor of Arts in General Studies in 2007 and Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies with an emphasis in Women’s Studies in 2010. Kristina has always known that her heart is in non-profit work, and has served HRI clients since the fall of 2012. Kristina loves taking long walks with her dog, Lulu, and enjoys going to rallies and events that promote social justice.
Born and raised in Austin, Texas, Layne attended the University of Texas at Austin. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Applied Learning and Development. During her career as an educator, Layne dedicated herself to underserved communities and taught numerous refugee and immigrant students. Layne was a regular volunteer at HRI before joining the staff in 2018. Outside of HRI, Layne spends her time painting, lettering, and listening to podcasts.

Born in DR Congo and raised in Rwanda, Ruth lived in Maine for several years before making Texas her home. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Social Work from the University of Southern Maine. She’s passionate about promoting human rights and fighting poverty through advocacy and empowering vulnerable populations. She joins HRI with extensive experience in community engagement and mission-centered fundraising.

Born in Mexico and raised in Lewisville, TX, Naomi is a first-generation college graduate. In May 2020, she obtained her Bachelor of Social Work at the University of North Texas in Denton, TX. In August 2021, Naomi obtained her Master of Social Work at the University of Texas at Arlington. As an immigrant and DACA recipient herself, Naomi is fulfilling her dream of working with and empowering resilient immigrants. Outside of HRI, she enjoys listening to podcasts, shopping, exploring Dallas and other areas of Texas, and spending time with her loved ones.

Veronica is a Dallas native. She earned her bachelor’s in Social Work and minor in Spanish from Texas State University. From a young age, she knew that her heart belonged to helping others, leading her to dedicate her career to the social services sector. In her free time, Veronica enjoys spending time with friends and family, chasing her dogs, cooking, and watching reality tv.

Kali has made Texas her home for nearly a decade. She received her Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude, from the University of Rochester and her law degree with honors from the University of Texas School of Law. Prior to joining HRI, Kali worked for the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas, where she focused on immigrants’ rights, policing, and LGBTQ rights. When she is not working, she enjoys hiking, cooking, and doing projects at home.

Sierra is a North Carolina native, and earned her Bachelor of Arts in Global Studies and Geography, with a focus in Latin America, at the University of North Carolina. Before joining HRI, Sierra worked at a refugee center in Mexico City, where she worked with asylum seekers and refugees, mostly from Central America. When she isn’t working, she spends her time hiking, running, cooking, reading, and traveling.

Elean was born and raised in Dallas, Texas. During her last year at UNT in Denton, where she graduated with her Bachelor of Arts in Social Science, Elean volunteered as a translator with HRI. With a passion for helping others, Elean has found herself right at home at HRI. When she’s not lending a listening ear to our prospective clients, she can be found enjoying a good craft beer and hanging out with her friends and family.

Cory earned her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Texas at Dallas and her law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law. Prior to working at HRI, Cory worked at Ayuda as a Skadden Legal Fellow, representing survivors of human trafficking and various other crimes. Outside of HRI, Cory enjoys hiking, biking, running, and traveling.

Jessica moved to the Dallas area in 2021.  She obtained her law degree from the Dwayne O. Andreas School of Law in Florida.  Jessica brings with her a diverse legal background, having worked to support immigrants in the non-profit, private practice, and corporate sectors.  Her passion lies in assisting vulnerable populations.   When she is not working, she enjoys spending time with her family, biking, paddle boarding, traveling and if there is any time leftover- enjoying a good book.

Born and raised in Pakistan, Baig received a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Political Science from the University of Punjab, and a Bachelor of Arts in Art & Performance/Master of Fine Arts in Art & Technology at UT Dallas. Alongside HRI, Baig continues to follow her passion for storytelling as an author, playwright and actor, serves on the board for Prism Movement Theatre, and teaches theatre at UT Dallas.

That was just our staff! Now meet some other members of our community!

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