In August, 2015, Gail Chester JWA Membership Chair and her committee, Bernadette Harvey and Lucia Lee Jentz met with Erik Burrell who was the Director of Diversity at that time. The Jesuit Women’s Auxiliary President, Cathy Foxworth, had a platform of diversity and it was hoped that the committee could assist Mr. Burrell in a project that he desired or needed assistance with. The end result of that meeting was the idea of a Language Translation Service. The Service would be utilized by active Jesuit parents and faculty and staff of Jesuit. Gail went home, sat at the computer and with the influence of the Holy Spirit created the structure of the Service which is still in place.

A Language Service had never been in place at Jesuit Dallas. In fact, Jesuit Dallas remains the only Language Service in the entirety of the Jesuit High School Network (that we know about). Creating something brand new is not easy and there were many, many, many hours spent finetuning what could be accomplished that first year. Irma Adriana Cornejo and Martha Carrasco Salazar as well as Gail dedicated themselves to getting the Language Service off the ground. Other committed volunteers joined that first year, the second and the third. Now beginning in our fourth year we expect to have close to 45 women who are members of JWA volunteer their time, talent and heart to serving Jesuit families and Jesuit Dallas at large.

In the 2017-18 school year the JWA Interpreters/Translators for Others Spanish Language Service moved from the Membership Committee to a newly formed committee called the Cultural Inclusion Committee. This committee addresses Cultural Inclusion in all areas and the Spanish Language Service is an important part of this committee.

Literally hundreds of hours have been donated through volunteer opportunities by our committed volunteers. They are making a significant impact on behalf of the Jesuit families that they serve as well as Jesuit events and functions. Friendships are being formed within the group and families are becoming more integrated into the Jesuit culture than ever before.

We are remain grateful to God for giving us the opportunity to serve and to JWA and Jesuit Dallas for supporting our efforts!

Michelle Pastrana

Chair- Cultural Inclusion Committee