RILA ✭ Peeps


Marta V. Martínez | Executive Director

Click here to contact Marta
Marta is RILA's Executive Director and Founder. She is a Community Oral Historian and Director of Nuestras Raíces: Latino Oral History Project of Rhode Island. Martínez also published a book in 2014 based on her work with the Latino Oral History Project.

She received her Bachelor’s and Doctorate degrees from Providence College, and has a Master’s degree in Journalism from The George Washington University.

Marta was awarded a 2-year prestigious Fellowship from the National Oral History Association and the National Endowment for the Humanities for her work as an oral historian (2022-2023)

Marta is fluent in Spanish, English and Sign Language. She is of Mexican heritage, was raised in El Paso, TX and currently lives in (Pawtuxet Village) Warwick, RI.
Listen to this podcast about Marta, recorded in 2019 at Providence College, her alma mater.


RILA Artists-in-Resident program provides an opportunity for Latinx artists to practice and develop their art-form for one-to-two years when they don’t normally have the time to do so because they have full-time jobs or other commitments. A requirement is that they create at least one work of art for RILA that reflects their artistic skill by the end of their residency. They are also asked to represent RILA with school visits, Artist MeetUps, and other collaborations for the duration of their residency. Lastly, they may be asked to mentor emerging Latinx artists who reach out to RILA seeking to grow their own creative skills.

René Gómez

Artist-in-Residence | Public & Visual Art | 2022-2023
René will be creating public art murals for the Museo del Barrio @RILA during a 2-year artist residency.

René is of Dominican heritage, was raised in South Providence, RI and is a self-taught artist.
Click here to read more about René

Sussy Santana

Poet-in-Residence | Las Abuelas Cuentan | 2023
Sussy is a poet and artist facilitator focusing on using poetry as a tool for healing. She has over fifteen years of experience as a cultural organizer and community advocate. Sussy will spend 12 months co-leading Las Abuelas Nos Cuentan, a project that will enrich RILA's oral history collections, and also offering bilingual poetry writing workshops.

Sussy is of Dominican heritage and currently lives in North Providence, RI.
Click here to read more about Sussy

Alberto Genao

Artist-in-Residence | LatinxCine | 2022-2023
Alberto plays a key role in producing and directing a series of documentaries based on Nuestras Raíces and the history of Latinos in Rhode Island.

Alberto is a Dominican American raised in South Providence. He will be mentoring emerging Videographers in our LatinxCine Program from 2021-2023.
Click here to read more about Alberto

Board Members

Miguel Quezada | Chair

Miguel is of Dominican heritage and lives in the Elmwood neighborhood of Providence. He has over fifteen years experience in the bioenvironmental, financial and healthcare sectors and is currently Specialty Sr. Sales Professional at Sanofi, where he sells market branded products to Endocrinologists in Connecticut and Rhode Island. Miguel has an MBA from Babson College and served in the U.S. Army.

Miguel Chairs RILA's Executive and serves on the Finance Committees.

José Ramírez | Vice Chair

A Providence, Rhode Island resident and self-taught photographer, José is not one to sit still for long, unless of course a camera is in his hand.

Along with doing vocational work for a non-profit that steer those in need towards public assistance resources, Ramirez co-hosts and co-produces the weekly radio show "Sonic Watermelons" out of Brown University while also being on the board for the Providence Latin American Film Festival, Rhode Island Latino Arts and the Rhode Island Latino Dollars for Scholars Foundation.

Many of Ramirez's photos reflect his personal view of the world and the dense landscapes that provide an inspirational backdrop for it.

José is on RILA's Executive Committee and serves on the Fundraising Committee.

Robin Xiong | Secretary

Robin first served on RILA's fundraising committee and helped organize Sabor Latino 2018. She has a BA from Loyola University in Global Studies with a Minor in Writing and is currently a candidate for her Master's degree in Public Administration at Roger Williams University.

Robin serves on RILA's Executive Committee and Chair's the Fundraising Committee.

Tia Ristaino Siegel | Treasurer

A resident of Central Falls, Tia earned her Bachelor of Arts from the University of New Hampshire. She has worked in the areas of restaurant management, sales, project management, real estate and business development.

Tia is a former Councilwoman for the City of Central Falls and has become known as a “catalyst for change,” motivating creative, committed people to get involved in such activities as planting community gardens and organizing a task force to target so-called “nuisance properties,” where noisy residents or neglectful landlords cause problems.

Her affiliations, all in Central Falls, include: The Lions Club; Community Collaborative; the Tax Appeal Board; Adams Memorial Library; Segue Institute for Learning; Central Falls Prevention Coalition.

Tia serves on RILA's Executive and Finance Committees.

Tyler Dobrowsky | Member

Tyler Dobrowsky is a freelance theater director and producer. For over fifteen years, he worked at Trinity Rep in their education, community engagement and artistic departments, where he spearheaded a number of initiatives.

As the theater's education director, he expanded Trinity Rep's student matinee program, Project Discovery, as well as the theater's in-school and after-school programs, and createdYoung Actors Summer Institute (YASI) the popular summer program.

In the summers of 2016 and 2017 he directed the mobile, bilingual production of Shakespeare en el Verano — Romeo and Juliet in partnership with Rhode Island Latino Arts and works closely with Marta to spearhead RILA's Teatro Latino del Pueblo initiative.

Tyler went to undergrad at Holy Cross in Worcester, MA, and received his Masters at Brown University.

In 2022, Tyler became Co-Artistic Director at Philadelphia Theatre Company (PTC), with his wife, Taibi and remains active on RILA's board as Advisor to RILA's Teatro en El Verano initiative, which he co-founded with RILA's Executive Director.

Winifred Lambrecht | At-Large • Advisor

Born in Antwerp, Belgium, Winnie was raised in central Africa (her father was a tropical disease specialist); she moved to the United States in 1960 and received both her Bachelor of Arts and her PhD in Anthropology from the University of California (Berkeley). After a Post Doctorate at The Museum of Natural History (NY), she taught in the NY City University system and the School of Visual Arts (NY). She moved to RI where she founded and directed the Folk/Traditional & Community Arts Program at the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. Winnie has done research and/or produced films in Perú, Egypt, Tanzania, México, France and the US. She directed several cultural exchanges, including with France, México and Québec. Winnie specializes in Visual Anthropology and is a documentary filmmaker.

In 1992, she was a co-founder (with two Bolivians) of The Providence Latin-American Film Festival. A resident of Lincoln, she currently teaches at the Rhode Island School of Design.

Wini was on the Founding Board of RILA. She currently serves on an Ad Hoc capacity.

Michelle DePina Medina | Member

Michelle is of El Salvadorian heritage. She has over 12 years’ experience in the Financial Services and Insurance industries and currently works as a Sr. Property & Casualty Communication Specialist at MetLife Auto & Home. She has a Bachelor's and also Master's in Business Administration from Bryant University. Michelle currently lives in Warwick.

Michelle serves on RILA's Governance and Nominating Committee.

Joseph Molina Flynn | Member

Joseph is a native of Medellin, Colombia and a native Spanish speaker. He is self-employed and handles family, immigration, and criminal cases. He obtained his law degree from the University of Michigan Law School in Ann Arbor. He grew up in Pawtucket and currently lives in Warwick.

Joseph Chairs RILA's Governance and Nominating Committee.

Angie Rivera | Member

Angelica (Angie) Rivera - Angie is a resident of Providence. She currently works as the Assistant Branch Manager at Navigant Credit Union in Central Falls. She is a graduate of Rhode Island College with a degree in Business Operations.

Angie serves on RILA's Fundraising Committees.