The Heart of the Teen Mental Health Movement: A Panel Discussion with I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter Author and Local Advocates
Panel Discussion with Erika L. Sánchez, Shaena Spoor, and Triona Suiter
Moderated by Gabrielle Moore
Seattle Rep invites you to connect with I am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter novel author, Erika L. Sánchez, and local mental wellness advocates as they analyze the themes of the play and the importance of storytelling in the teen mental health movement. Together, these speakers will unveil the inspiring stamina of young adults today as they navigate their communities’ trials and triumphs. We are excited to have your valuable presence at this conversation.
Meet The Panelists
Erika L. Sánchez
Erika L. Sánchez (she/her) is the daughter of Mexican immigrants. She is the author of Lessons on Expulsion, I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, and Crying in the Bathroom. I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter will soon be a feature film directed by America Ferrera. She is the Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz Chair at DePaul University and lives in Chicago with her family. erikalsanchez.com, @erikalsanchez
Erika L. Sánchez (she/her/ella) es la hija de inmigrantes Mexicanos. Ella es la autora de Lessons on Expulsion, Yo No Soy Tu Perfecta Hija Mexicana, y Crying in the Bathroom. Yo No Soy Tu Perfecta Hija Mexicana pronto será una película dirigida por America Ferrera. Ella es la Directora de Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz en la Universidad DePaul y vive en Chicago con su familia. erikalsanchez.com, @erikalsanchez
Committed to disrupting the paradigms of traditional “Social Work”, Shaena holds the youth-centered mental health programming at Young Women Empowered (Y-WE), a local nonprofit that cultivates the power of young women and gender expansive teens to be creative leaders and courageous change makers. She stewards pathways to care for participants and alumni and collaborates with the Y-WE team to support community-centered wellness across programming.
Prior to her role at Y-WE, she spent 7 years providing community-based support to survivors of intimate harm both in Seattle, WA and in San Francisco, CA. Shaena’s work includes direct service for survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking as well as outreach and education in schools, organizations and the broader community. Informed by these experiences, her passions live where gender justice and reimagining community safety meet. This heart-work greatly shapes her practice with young people. As such, her approach is healing-centered, collaborative, trauma-informed, holistic and politically driven. She strives for liberatory praxis and embraces humor as an essential part of reclaiming wholeness after hardship.
Shaena received her Master of Social Work from the University of Washington with a concentration in Community-Centered Integrative Practice, and her Bachelor’s in Psychology from San Francisco State University. In her free time, she enjoys her morning coffee rituals, Netflix binging, dancing, cooking with friends & lounging with her senior kitty, Mocha.
Triona Suiter (she/her) is a senior at Ingraham High School where she is a member of the swim team and an enthusiastic participant in drama and choir. She is a host for the TeenTix Arts Podcast, and has written for The Seattle Times about the impact of the arts on teen mental health.
Lydia Mushkatina, she/her, is a junior at Sammamish High School. She is very grateful that the performing arts have provided her with opportunities to explore meaningful messages, and aspires to create impactful art of her own through theatre, music, writing, and film. See her as Creon in ACT's upcoming production of Antigone's!
Enza Fammartino is a sophomore at Lincoln High School. She is a member of Lincoln's gymnastics team as well as ACT's Young Core Company. She is an engagement assistant for 14/48: HS, and strives to build a more welcoming and inspiring environment around teens in performing arts.