Program Director, Latin America Initiative
Erika de la Garza is the program director of the Latin America Initiative at the Baker Institute. She is in charge of the Latin America Initiative programs, which include the Americas Project, the U.S.-Mexico Border Program and the Vecinos Lecture Series. Her chief areas of interest include U.S.-Latin America relations; emerging leadership; coalition building between public, private and civil society actors; and trade and business development in Latin America. She conducts research on current events facing the region and organizes lectures and programs to increase awareness about Latin America and to foster a better understanding between the countries of this hemisphere. Prior to joining the institute, she worked for several years encouraging foreign direct investment in Costa Rica, her home country. De la Garza has also taught in the Department of International Studies at the University of St. Thomas. She holds a master’s degree in international affairs from Columbia University in New York and a master’s degree in diplomacy from the University of Costa Rica.