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School of Diplomacy and International Relations

Hispanic Heritage Month Spotlight: Alumna Lydiette Diaz Develops Latinx Legal Professions Pipeline  

Lydiette DiazLydiette Diaz, M.A. '11, was recently promoted to director of the Cesar A. Perales Leadership Institute (CAP) of Latino Justice PRLDEF, whose mission is to act as a legal profession pipeline for Latinx people. Diaz has been an innovative leader, guiding her organization through the challenges of COVID and developing virtual programming, which has expanded their geographic reach beyond the New York metropolitan area.

Originally from Puerto Rico, Diaz moved to New Jersey at age six. After graduating from Rutgers in 2006, Diaz joined the master's program at the School of Diplomacy in 2009. She fell in love with what she describes as a diverse environment and an intimate setting between peers, faculty, and administrative staff in which she had many good opportunities for practical experience.

From there, Diaz secured a temporary position at Seton Hall Law School before joining Latino Justice PRLDEF, a Latinx legal advocacy organization. She started as an executive assistant to the president and general counsel and became an integral member of their staff working on special projects before her promotion to director of the organization's Cesar A. Perales Leadership Institute (CAP). While there has been change due to COVID, Diaz emphasized the importance of maintaining CAP's successful formula and the strength of their in-person events.

Diaz has also maintained her dedication to Seton Hall, having served as the president of the Diplomacy Alumni Association, before being invited to serve on the university's Alumni Board of Directors two years ago. As a Board Member, Diaz advocates for the School of Diplomacy, her fellow alumni, and champions diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts. Diaz was selected among the Board to speak at the University's 2021 Commencement ceremonies.

Ten years after graduating from the School of Diplomacy, Diaz is a successful non-profit leader, mother, wife, and valuable member of the Seton Hall community. She is hard working, dedicated, and committed to serving the Seton Hall community and her non-profit. In telling the story of her career, Diaz emphasized the importance of advocating for yourself and knowing when to take advantage of opportunities. She credits the School of Diplomacy with instilling the skillset that has made her successful.

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