Originally from Mexico, Irene moved to the United States to pursue a degree in Finance and Entrepreneurship at the University of Utah. As a student, she worked for a microfinance organization in Kathmandu Nepal and decided to start her own social business “Spread the love Inc.”, to provide market means for artisans living in poverty to sell their products. Upon graduation, she joined the policy arm of the Utah-based “Sorenson Global Impact Investing Center” focusing on international outreach and development. This position enabled her to understand the challenges of international development and the need for sustainability and accountability to truly help the poor.
Driven by the desire to work with and learn from the extreme poor, she joined the economic development arm of “CHOICE Humanitarian”, an NGO operating in seven countries whose mission is to eliminate extreme poverty. As CHOICE’s Impact Fund Manager she develops and oversees impact investment projects designed to connect entrepreneurs in impoverished villages with financial resources and mentorship to bring them out of poverty. She promotes data driven decisions to provide structure and discipline to the process. Apart from CHOICE, she works as an advisor for small businesses in sectors like agriculture, production and impact measurement.