Maven to Know: Maria Yuquilima

Maven to Know is a weekly series by Indy Maven highlighting a member of our community. Want to be featured? Join us!

Maven to Know is a weekly series by Indy Maven highlighting a member of our community. Want to be featured? Join us!

Maria YuquilimaMaria Yuquilima is a Partnership Associate at Justicia Lab, a national nonprofit tech company dedicated to transforming the immigrant experience through innovative digital tools. As an immigrant justice advocate, she is deeply committed to fostering dignity and respect within her community. Yuquilima says her passion lies in ensuring equitable access to affordable and quality legal representation for individuals navigating immigration matters. 

A resident of Southport, Yuquilima also contributes her time as a Post Release Outreach Coordinator at Mariposa Legal, a local nonprofit, working towards the well-being of individuals post-release.

Beyond her organizational roles, she also has her own small business, Yuquilima Solutions, where she provides affordable translations and interpretations for those involved in immigration processes. She also extends support by offering application assistance and translating/interpreting for social service applications and documents.

A proud mom of one, Yuquilima says she finds immense joy in balancing her professional commitments with the joys of motherhood. You can find her on Instagram and LinkedIn. Tell us more, Maria! 

My Maven Superpower is …   

Empowering individuals and creating positive change.

The Best book I’ve read lately is … 

“We are Water Protectors” (it’s a kid’s book but it hits the spot). It reminds me of my ancestral roots and to stick up for what I believe in.

Self-care habit I swear by …  

Saying no. It is so important because sometimes you can take on more than you can chew and it can lead to early burnout.

My first job was … 

I would say I had two first jobs, I worked in landscaping with my father for his side hustle and then I went on to work at Burger King alongside my mom (at that time).

The best career advice I can offer is … 

Embark on your journey with unwavering purpose, daring to invest in yourself. Understand that in taking risks, the worst outcome is a valuable lesson. Embrace the courage to start anew when needed. Cultivate a deep curiosity, unafraid to seek answers. And in all your endeavors, earnestly make your mark, ensuring that your name resonates with purpose and meaning.

A purchase I’ve been loving lately is … 

My sweat suits from Walmart also my phone stand from Five Below!

I feel most confident when …  

My confidence peaks when my hair and makeup are meticulously done. Feeling good about my appearance translates directly to feeling good overall.

My favorite local restaurant dish is …  

While I don’t have a specific favorite local spot, I consistently lean towards Mexican cuisine. 

Opting for a classic choice, my go-to is always tacos de lengua—beef tongue tacos.

The thing I’ve been binging lately is …  

I totally binge-watch Parks and Recreation!

A fun fact about me is … 

Despite being left-hand dominant, my athleticism leans toward my right side. As a soccer player, I exhibit stronger throwing abilities with my left arm, yet my kicking prowess is exclusive to my right leg.

The skill I most want to learn is …  

I really want to learn how to tumble. Especially want to do a backflip and be able to do the splits again.

A Maven you should know is … *

Jackie Rodriguez

My favorite nonprofit to support is …  

My favorite local nonprofit is Cosecha Indiana. My favorite national nonprofit is CHIRLA.

What have you achieved recently that you’d like to celebrate with our community?  

On a personal level, I’ve embraced the art of accepting the closure of chapters. I used to struggle with clinging onto situations for too long, often to my detriment, sometimes even leading to physical discomfort. Learning to prioritize my well-being, ensuring ample rest, and maintaining firm boundaries have been transformative.

On a professional front, I’ve successfully completed a comprehensive overview of immigration law with the Catholic Legal Immigration Network. I’m steadfast on my journey to becoming an accredited representative with the Department of Justice. Additionally, there’s contemplation about retaking the LSAT, as I aspire to continue on the path of potentially becoming a movement lawyer in the future.

What’s next for you? What can we expect to see over the next few years?    

In the coming years, anticipate witnessing my increased presence in actively promoting resources for immigrant integration. My long-term vision involves establishing a nonprofit community center in my hometown of Fort Wayne. This center would be dedicated to comprehensive immigrant integration, offering holistic legal services, social support, affordable health services, and engaging in advocacy for immigrant rights. Simultaneously, I aim to expand my small business to encompass tax services and bilingual consulting. As part of my ongoing journey, I aspire to attend law school, obtain a license to practice law, and eventually establish my own law firm specializing in criminal, family, and immigration law.

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