Originally from East L.A., Lauren Watanabe is an artist and proud third generation working class Mexican-American. Her identity informs her passion for justice and she channels it into her work and art. After graduating from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, she was a community/political organizer with UNITE HERE Local 5 and discovered her profound sense of purpose in connecting deeply rooted values to movement building. Throughout her time at Local 5, Lauren worked on several campaigns in alliance with diverse community leaders, students, and organizations, as well as created art based protests for actions and rallies.
During some time in L.A., Lauren spent time at a Chicanx women’s theater collective, whose objective was to organize theater festivals that celebrated the unique voices of women and provided critical spaces to speak their truths. Since moving back to Hawai‘i in 2019, Lauren became a member of Hawai‘i Playbuilders – a local, community-based theatre company that shares real stories throughout the culturally rich and diverse communities of Hawai‘i. She is beyond thrilled to join the Sierra Club of Hawai‘i team in the fight for climate justice—to grow a broad-based movement that centers our community in an understanding that everyone’s issues are interconnected.
Lauren is also a bike commuter that dreams of an eco-socialist future full of vegan foodies with “Fab 5” realness.