Stephanie Portillo is a life-long resident of the Hunts Point section in the Bronx.
Her community organizing started at 14 for Immigration rights, when she attended her first rally at Union Square in Manhattan, which sparked her interest in many social justice issues.
Portillo graduated from Manhattanville College with a BA in international studies with a minor in social justice.
She has served as a board member for Bronx Community Board 2 and was the chair of the Franchise, Licensing and Permits Committee for two years.
Portillo started her career as a project manager for a not-for-profit organization in the Bronx, where she helped launch a community-based project called Hunts Point Speaks.
She said Hunts Point Speaks was “an eye opener” for her, which made her realize her passion for helping uplift her community.
Portillo has worked in the public and non-for-profit sector, and has served as a liaison to many city agencies.
She has worked with nonprofits organizing underserved communities of color to advocate for quality services, equal representation and engaging women of color to be more civically involved.
Most recent, with the Hunts Point Community Partnership, Portillo said she was able to build on her connections to expand civic engagement within her own community.
She was the primary asset to the Hunts Point Community Partnership’s success during the global pandemic.
Portillo said that, because of her passion and dedication to the Hunts Point Community, she was able to serve over 20,000 people from March 2020-21, with the help of her team.
She developed several virtual engagement events, built four social media platforms for Hunts Point Community Partnership, volunteered at local food pantries (over 100 hours), created communications strategy to stay connected to the community, and facilitated over 20 community meetings and over 25 distributions of essential items – all while pursing higher education.
Portillo said she believes that everyone in her community should be civically-engaged and should start being a part of the decision-making happening in Hunts Point.