1828 Spotlight: Karla Lopez-Owens

Posted by on Mar 28, 2017 in IndyHub | No Comments

The 1828 Project is one of our signature programs at IndyHub and each year it’s full of incredible leaders between the ages of 18 and 28. Karla is a part of 1828’s Class VI. We sent her some questions. She responded. Keep reading to learn more about Karla!

karlalopezowensWhat does a typical week look like for you?

My days are spent all over the city, it just depends on the day. On Mondays, I’m usually at the central library downtown, doing my weeks’ worth of work.  Then Tuesdays – Fridays are spent mostly at the IU McKinney Law School, either in class or at the Wrongful Conviction Clinic, putting hours in the case our professor is currently defending. I also co-teach classes in the Law & Public Policy Program at Arsenal Tech High School.

Where are you originally from?

Cuernavaca, Morelos. It’s located down south in Mexico and it’s known as the city of eternal spring.

What is your favorite Indy spot?

The Indianapolis Central Library and anywhere DJ Kyle Long is playing which has recently been the Hi-Fi.

How do you typically travel around the city?

I used to ride the bus, the 34 since there was a stop outside my house but most recently I drive since my schedule is not as consistent as it once was.

If you could have coffee with anyone, living or not, who would it be and why? (Bonus points for which Indy coffee joint you’d take them to!)

I would like to have coffee with Senator Mike Delph, one of the authors of Senate Bill 423, an immigration bill here in Indy that forces or “explicitly compels educational institutions with in-state campuses from restricting any governmental body’s effort regarding obtaining, maintaining, or sharing information regarding the citizenship or immigration status of an individual.”  Basically making it illegal for campuses to be “sanctuary campuses” or in other words, not required to work with the federal government (and leaving states to decide on this issue).  I’d like to let him know how these misguided bills are affecting our community and explore ways in which we can work together. I’d invite him to rabble coffee off 10th street.

Thinking forward to the next 5 years in Indy, what are you most excited about for the future?

Elections! I have friends who are citizens of immigrant descent or immigrants like myself who are US citizens that have mentioned interest in running for office at some point here in Indy. Maybe that time will be 5 years from now.  One of the things I’m hoping to implement are taco trucks on every corner.

Are you reading anything interesting right now, if so, what book?

I’m currently reading “Indiana’s African-American Heritage” that I picked up from the Indiana Historical Society a few days ago, actually! It’s 16 articles “that first appeared in Black History News & Notes” the articles cover women in Indiana, the political dynamics from back in the day and how they shaped the political climate today and education and culture.  Even though I’m only on the first chapter, I already feel empowered: the book notes women like Madam C.J. Walker and how when a movie theater denied her entrance because she was African-American, she basically said: “to hell with you guys,” and went ahead and built her own.

Would you rather visit the world 100 years in the past or 100 in the future and why?

I think 100 years in the past.  Assuming I was living in Mexico, this is when the constitution was being drafted.  Even though the patriarchy was alive and well back then, I want to believe I would have taken some part in this piece of legislation that is still in effect today… even if that meant hiding my hair in a hat and drawing on a mustache to pass off as a man, like many women back then had to do.

What is one of your favorite family traditions?

My favorite family tradition is going to Parke County every October for the Covered Bridge Festival.  They sell soy candles and lotion made in Indiana.  It’s really exciting!


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