Veronica is an enrolled member of the Hopi Tribe of Arizona and also has Jemez and Navajo heritage. Veronica spent several years in the New Mexico foster care system before being adopted at 10 years old, along with her younger sister. After graduating from Fort Lewis College with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Health in 2017, she returned home to New Mexico, where she found her passion for supporting and working with foster and native youth. She has spent the last two and a half years, establishing herself as a local, state and national young leader within Child Welfare; working in both the micro- and macro-level of advocacy. Currently, Veronica is the Foster Youth Advocacy Program Coordinator for CASA First (Court Appointed Special Advocates, First Judicial District), where she is able to provide support and education for CASA volunteers, and where she serves as an advocate and peer mentor for transitional aged youth in foster care between 14 to 18 years old. As a Foster Alumni, she is able to use her personal experience with foster care and adoption to connect and relate to the young people she works with, and to provide authentic insight and lived experience perspective to service providers in the community. She is also a Community Facilitator for Youth Programming with Tewa Women United, a nonprofit working within primarily Native Communities of Northern New Mexico. This past year, she served as a member of New Mexico's House Joint Memorial 10 Task Force, a member of the National Foster Youth and Alumni Policy Council, a member of the Youth Engagement Team for the Administration for Children and Families, a consultant for Casey Family Programs and joined Leadership Santa Fe's Class of 2021. Veronica was also previously recognized by FosterClub as an Outstanding Young Leader in 2019. She aspires to be a role model as well as a supportive and positive adult for other children, youth and young adults in the child welfare system and communities of color.