Hopelab, a transformative social innovation lab and impact investor, has appointed Juan Martinez to serve as the organization’s head of strategic communications. Alongside President and CEO Margaret Laws, Martinez will help advance and promote Hopelab’s work towards a more equitable world where young people feel empowered, affirmed, and are free from barriers to their mental health and well-being.
Martinez brings rich experience across media, public service, policy, and social advocacy. Prior to joining Hopelab, Martinez served as the chief communications and marketing officer at the Legal Defense Fund (LDF). He’s also held roles at GLSEN, Sesame Workshop, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and served as press secretary to Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. His lifelong personal and professional commitment to working on issues that improve the lives of the people and communities he loves stems from his days growing up in the housing projects of the South Bronx.
“Hopelab is a bit of unicorn. In the youth mental health and emerging technology space, we invest, collaborate to build tools, lead research and catalyze partnerships, shape policy, and center youth, especially LGTBQ+ and teens and young adults of color. So we were looking for a Chief Communications Unicorn of sorts,” explained Laws. “And, amazingly, we found it in Juan.”
Martinez will bring a fresh perspective and ensure youth voices are center stage as Hopelab Ventures ramps up its advisory services and co-investments with partners who are making mental health more accessible, equitable, and effective.
“I’m honored to join the Hopelab team and to work on the important intersection of mental health and technology, especially with our focus on BIPOC and LGBTQ+ youth,” said Martinez. “Hopelab has 20 years of experience making life better for young people and is perfectly positioned to leverage its expertise in investing, research, design, and technology to directly confront the ongoing youth mental health crisis while centering our priority communities in the process.”.
Hopelab is a social innovation lab and impact investor advancing entrepreneurs, research, digital health, and solutions that support and empower young people, especially those from historically underserved communities. The organization works to remove systemic barriers to youth mental health and emotional well-being through targeted social impact investments, hands-on design and research support for digital innovation, and translational science partnerships. Learn more at hopelab.org.