According to the Pew Research Center, 78.9% of Hispanics in Chicago report having a Mexican origin. As an ambitious, multi-part speaker series, MEX talks fosters positive discussions about Mexican identity and aims to inspire community progress.
MEX talks was founded in 2013 after Latinos Progresando staff and supporters began having discussions about misconceptions that pervade Chicago’s Mexican American community. At the time, the core problem we identified was how common it is for Mexicans living in Chicago to be represented as “new immigrants,” who have not made significant contributions to the city.
Later that year, Latinos Progresando organized the inaugural MEX talks in order to address that misconception head-on, through a series of public talks from Mexican and Mexican-American speakers with compelling stories to share. The first MEX talks not only emphasized that Mexicans have, in fact, resided in Chicago for over 100 years, but also examined how Mexican contributions in Chicago have shaped the city we see today.
MEX talks Today
According to the Pew Research Center, 79.8% of Hispanics in Chicago describe themselves as having a Mexican origin. Since its inception in 2013, MEX talks has grown to become Latinos Progresando’s flagship event, giving Mexican and Mexican American leaders the platform to reflect on a shared identity and share stories that inspire positive change.
Over its four-year tenure, MEX talks has convened a range of voices, including entrepreneurs, lawyers, students, teachers, and nearly everything in between. And just as the stage has been given to our most established community figures, MEX talks has expressly sought to elevate emerging leaders, whose stories haven’t yet been told.
Each year, the outcome of MEX talks is impactful and tangible. Beyond the show that is attended by over 300 professionals, students, and community residents, each talk is streamed live and, afterwards, archived on the Latinos Progresando YouTube channel for future viewing. As it continues to grow, the vision of MEX talks is to foster positive discussions about Mexican identity and to inspire community progress.