Honorees

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Juancarlos Soto

Juancarlos Soto is a community organizer at Planned Parenthood of Southern New England and an artist who uses his art to bring light into social justice issues and the stories that often go untold. JC as he is also known, was born in Puerto Rico and moved to Fair Haven when he was 15 attending Wilbur Cross High School and eventually graduating with a BFA from Pair College of Art in Hamden.

JC focuses his organizer work around the Latinx, Black and Brown queer community and the Immigrant rights movement. Helping to develop two annual Youth “Camps”; Young Giants a leadership development week-long summer camp focused around Youth in the Fair Haven Neighborhood and The Children of Marsha P Johnson a week-long Leadership development program focused around Black and Brown queer youth.  

JC is also a founding member of the board of Puerto Ricans United, Inc. a non-profit organization whose mission is to empower the Puerto Rican community through promoting education and social advancement. The organization takes great pride in celebrating Puerto Rican traditions thought community events such as a annuals Puerto Rican Festival celebrated on the downtown New Haven Green that draws thousands of participants every year.

JC’s community involvement also include proudly serving on the board of the Connecticut Bailfund, being part of Housing not Jails a group that is seeking to pass the homeless bill of rights in the City of New Haven. The New Haven Sanctuary City working group and being the Co-Chair of the Fair Haven Community Festival. JC’s art has been featured in a number of events and publications including, “Faces of DAPA”, The annual Puerto Rican Parranda events and The Arts Paper.