Cecilia Polanco

2017 Jamie Kirk Hahn Foundation Fellow


cecilia's impact

Cecilia connected with JKHF through several ways before becoming a 2017 Fellow. From being featured as a chef during our 2016 Weekend of Purpose to the Carolina Food Summit (co-sponsored by JKHF), her 

Through her 2017 fellowship, Cecilia partnered with Center for Environmental Farming Systems on their summer youth-led conferences. First, she led workshops for a youth conference in May and then supported the July 2017 Rooted in Community conference. She facilitated a workshop called “Using media for social justice movements.” Cecilia also plugged in to CEFS’ racial equity work through continued training and engagement with staff; after her fellowship ended, she was asked to stay on with the organization as a consultant to continue racial equity training. 

Additionally, Cecilia was able to spend time supporting her So Good Pupusas food truck business and Pupusas 4 Education nonprofit. She developed a plan for the board of nonprofit, including hiring a new Executive Director and working on strategic plan and fundraising. Cecilia also made significant progress on documenting recipes, establishing cost of goods, developing a budget, and using Quickbooks for the food truck. 

Watch Cecilia's video.

Read Cecilia's blog.

Read more about Cecilia's social entrepreneurship efforts:



because of JKHF

During the 2017 Fellowship, Cecilia was able to connect with policymakers and politicians. In that process, she discovered that she wants to run for political office in the future. She got started in Fall 2017 by applying for and now current serves on the Durham County Women's Commission.   

"Because of the fellowship, my food truck is different, my nonprofit is different, and I’m different. The fellowship is an accelerator of people."

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Owner of So Good Pupusas

Founder of Pupusas 4 Education

Continuing education student in The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Certificate in Nonprofit Management

Teaching Assistant for UNC BUSI 500, Entrepreneurship in Business Planning

Board of Directors for Helius Foundation



Coming soon!

“If you really want to make a friend, eat with {them},
the people who give you their food
give you their heart”
-Cesar Chavez