Brenda Xum Palacios

Brenda Xum Palacios

Regional Program Officer
Americas, Civil Society, Education, Leadership, Youth

Brenda is a regional program officer for USAID's Youth Excel program.

She is responsible for coaching and mentoring local partners and subgrantees in Youth Excel approaches, including carrying out assessments, mapping with youth, and identifying public- and private-sector partners; overseeing and coplanning agendas and logistics for virtual and in-person events; cofacilitating events, trainings, workshops, and dialogues; providing ongoing mentoring and feedback to youth-led initiatives and youth-created knowledge products; and managing micro- and small-grant portfolios.

Prior to joining IREX, Brenda worked in nonprofit organization management, empowering youth through education, creating consciousness around social and community problems, and seeking ways to improve their quality of life. Brenda also worked on promoting projects among institutions, creating and maintaining institutional relationships between NGOs and organizations in the public and private sectors. Brenda is an advocate of social development projects for youth.

She has been actively involved in several youth-serving organizations locally and internationally, such as the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World Chapter Guatemala and the International Fellowship Program.

Brenda holds a bachelor of science in sociology from San Carlos University in Guatemala City. She also holds a master of arts in Latin American studies from the Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies of the University of Texas at Austin. She obtained her MA through the Ford Foundation's International Fellowships Program.