Martine is a community advocate, speaker, writer and Huffington Post blogger on her coming of age story as an undocumented immigrant orphan in America. An incredible journey of going from a seven-year battle as an undocumented immigrant without a family, to a senior level executive with an advanced degree, a father and U.S. citizenship is the inspiration behind the mission to share her story. Martine’s intention is to highlight the absurdity of current immigration policy that marginalizes undocumented immigrants, and to demystify and challenge stereotypes about what a strong woman looks like, who the illegal immigrant is, what is means to be American and the African experience. Furthermore, she also seeks to share her universal message-- regardless of our inherent differences, we are all connected by a shared human experience.
Martine was a featured speaker on immigration reform at various forums and rallies, such as Senator McCain’s Town Hall Rally on Immigration in New York City in February 2006. Her story has also appeared in editorials in newspapers, and publications such as USA Today, Metro New York and The New York Sun. On May 18, 2007, Martine was a panelist and speaker to the U.S. House of Representative’s Judiciary Subcommittee’s hearing on Immigration Reform, where she shared her story and spoke on behalf of the DREAM Act. Martine was the keynote speaker at the convocation ceremony at her alma mater, St. Anne’s-Belfield School, which included noteworthy attendees such as John Grisham. She is the sole proprietor of Martine Kalaw Enterprises, LLC which is a holding company that promotes Martine’s motivational speaking, books, and consulting work.
Currently, Martine Kalaw is a Senior Director of Learning and Development at Wheels Up, a membership based private aviation company. In her role, she oversees company-wide education initiatives, program development and individual certification that provides clients (internally and externally) with the resources and tools necessary for success. She designs customized on-boarding/training solutions and ongoing professional development courses in an effort to provide a blended learning approach that will align with individual, departmental and organizational goals. Martine received a Bachelor of Arts from Hamilton College in 2003, where she majored in World Politics. In 2004 she was awarded a Master of Public Administration with a Certificate of Legal Studies at the Maxwell School at Syracuse University. Her area of focus in her graduate studies was immigration law.
Martine was born in Zambia, Africa, but lived in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) until the age 4, when she immigrated to the United States. Since her recent journey to Zambia in November 2014, she is proud to call both the U.S. and her native Africa ‘home’. As a recent U.S. passport holder, Martine’s newfound passion is travelling globally and being a citizen of the world. Visit Martine at www.martinekalaw.com
Facebook: Martine M. Kalaw
Huffington Post Blogs:
Past Speaking Engagements:
2017 Panelist, How to Create and Grow Your Side Hustle, Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business (CKGSB) Knowledge Series, NY, NY
2015 Speaker, Xaxis Inspiration: Turning Set-backs into Success, Xaxis LLC, New York, NY
2012 Speaker, A Conversation: My Life as an Illegal Immigrant, PS 279 Captain Manuel Rivera School; Bronx, NY
2007 Panelist, U.S. Congress, House of Representatives, Judiciary Subcommittee, Capitol Hill; Washington, D.C.