Mariel  Betancourt Jungkunz's profile photo

Mariel Betancourt Jungkunz

Senior research editor ,

Mariel  Betancourt Jungkunz's profile photo
Location: Athens, OH
Start Year: 2024
TRHT Pillar: Narrative Change


Mariel Betancourt-Jungkunz is a Puerto Rican journalist who grew up in Río Piedras (PR) and north Florida. A graduate of the creative writing program at Florida State University, she is currently a senior research editor at, where she is particularly interested in issues of how race, pop culture, and language intersect. Mariel has published two books: Dreams of Green and its Spanish translation, El Verde de mis Sueños, about the Latin American and Caribbean tradition of Día de Reyes. Mariel is active with Las Musas, the first collective of Latinx women writing and/or illustrating in traditional children’s literature, and a member of the Macondo Writers Workshop for socially engaged writers. She resides in Ohio with her family, including her 11-year-old daughter. 


Mariel is working on her next children’s books, which center around Latinx families in the U.S. She is excited about using language as activism and harnessing the power of literature to provide readers and families with a sense of belonging. With other writers of color, she is developing presentations for K–12 educators about how to use children’s literature by Black and Latinx authors, as well as others from traditionally excluded communities, to promote empathy and challenge stereotypes in the classroom. Mariel is also exploring models for celebrating and sharing diverse literature directly with children—such as at Día de Reyes community celebrations. These initiatives are meant to give voice to the Latinx community through media and curricula, countering false narratives and bringing to life our truth.

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