In Latino Professionals in America, Maria Chávez combines rich qualitative interviews, auto-ethnographic accounts, and policy analysis to explore the converging oppressions that make it difficult for Latinos to become professionals and to envision themselves as successful in those professions. Recounting her own story, Chávez interviews 31 Latino professionals from across the nation in a variety of occupations and careers, contextualizing their experiences amid family struggles and ongoing racism in the United States. She addresses gender inequality within the Latino community, arguing that by defending, rationalizing, or ignoring patriarchy within the Latino community perpetuates systems of oppression—especially for women; gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer individuals; and others at the intersections. The experiences of these Latino professionals and the author’s analysis provide a blueprint for what works—one, both pragmatic and hopeful, that uses real lives to illustrate how a combination of public policies, people, and perseverance increases the presence of America’s fastest-growing demographic group in the professional class.

chapter 1|36 pages



chapter 2|42 pages

The Pioneers

How Latino Professionals Overcame Obstacles Through Public Policies and Mentors

chapter 3|32 pages

The Warriors

Testimonios From Latino Professionals

chapter 4|30 pages

The Leaders

“Our Lived Experiences—That’s Where the Power Resides”

chapter 6|23 pages


Solutions for Increasing the Number of Latino Professionals