Welcome Perla Cavazos and Erin Jones to GENaustin’s Board of Directors!

GENaustin is excited to welcome Perla Cavazos and Erin Jones to our Board of Directors! 


What drew you to join the GENaustin board of directors?


I first volunteered with GENaustin in 2007 and have been a huge fan and volunteer ever since. Over the years, I have volunteered on career day, helped connect GENaustin with local leaders, served on the We Are Girls conference committee. I’ve even led a work shop on leadership at the conference. I’m committed to the mission of supporting and guiding girls to make better choices, and I wish I had something like GENaustin when I was growing up in South Texas.  After all these years of volunteering, it was time to take my commitment to the next level and join the board of directors!


 I became involved about a year ago through a great friend of mine and current board member, Monica Emilienburg. As I learned more I was immediately drawn to GEN and its amazing mission. Last year I attended my first We Are Girls Conference and was really moved by the remarkable work GEN does for girls navigating this particularly difficult time in their lives. I knew then I wanted to get involved in a greater capacity and do as much as I could to help the organization.

Are there any special projects you are currently working on for GENaustin, or ones you have done in the past that were important to you?


I care very much about the 180 Program. I helped connect a local judge with GENaustin. He was looking for resources for young girls appearing before him in court who were at-risk of entering the juvenile justice system. I thought GENaustin would be a perfect fit for these girls. Months later the idea for the 180 Program was born, and I’m proud to have helped plant that seed.


I’m helping to launch a new fundraising committee, focused on increasing funding for scholarships for the various programs GEN offers. By expanding our scholarship capability we’re able to reach even more deserving girls. We’re still in the planning stages, but the concept is to take something that challenges you and turn that into your inspiration for raising money to support our scholarship program. I think it’s going to be a fun and unique experience for everyone involved. Stay tuned for details!

Tell us a little about yourself outside of GENaustin


I’m originally from the Rio Grande Valley and have lived in Austin for 16 years. I feel so lucky that my sister, Ruby, and brother, Arturo, also live in Austin. We lost our parents as children and that made me realize early on that nothing matters more than quality relationships and friendships. I truly value and trust my family and the close circle of friends I have here in Austin. My favorite thing to do on the weekends is “just hang out” and have a meal with friends. I also enjoy running, reading fiction novels and traveling as often as possible. Professionally, I am a legislative director for a Texas State Senator – meaning I get the privilege of going “to work” at our beautiful and historic capitol every day.


 I’ve been married for two years and we have two boxers, Dabnie and Miles. My husband and I love to travel and have done quite a bit over the past several years. When we’re home we look forward to our weekends where we can enjoy everything our awesome city offers, toting our dogs along with us everywhere we can. I also have a two year old nephew that I absolutely adore and spoil rotten. Outside of travel and family, I started a small business two years ago, and growing it has been a great challenge and learning experience. My husband and I joke that we started a business, built a house and got married all at the same time, so that pretty much makes us crazy. I wouldn’t have it any other way.


 Thanks to Perla and Erin for introducing themselves! We’re so glad to have you on the Board!


Vanessa Wright