By Lilian Sanchez
I grew up the proud daughter of an immigrant. A single mom who sought refuge from an abusive household in the state known for its Field of Dreams. I grew up proud of my Mexican roots surrounded by strong and resilient women who would do anything and everything to give their children a better life than the one they had themselves. A life with “a vision to see what could be unburdened by what has been.” A life full of possibilities.
Almost exactly a year after I became a U.S. citizen, then-Sen. Kamala Harris was named the first Asian American and the first female African American to be nominated for vice president on a major party ticket. And less than four months after that I found myself, a first-time voter, at my local county auditor’s office alongside my mother voting for our country’s first woman and woman of color to ever be elected vice president of the United States.
Like me, she’s the proud daughter of an immigrant single mother. Like me, she understands the gift and beauty that comes with our multicultural backgrounds. Like me, she represents the future of our country. This historic election is a nod to all the little Black and brown girls across this country to embrace their story and be unapologetically ambitious. It is a symbol of hope and a challenge to all of us women of color to never give up on the dreams our ancestors passed on to us. We are our ancestors’ wildest dreams and we will be our country’s greatest legacy.
Lilián Sánchez is a proud immigrant, first-gen graduate of the University of Iowa, and served as Vice President-elect Kamala Harris’ Iowa deputy political director. She is currently the recipient of the prestigious Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute Public Policy Fellowship, working with the American Civil Liberties Union’s National Political Advocacy Department.