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Marquette University Alumni Association

Klingler College of Arts and Sciences Recipients

Young Alumna of the Year

Griselda AldreteGRISELDA ALDRETE, ARTS '02

A tireless advocate for others, Griselda is working to change perceptions of Hispanics in Milwaukee and, with that, the professional face of the city.

Griselda’s father was born in Mexico and her mother in El Salvador. Griselda and her sister were born in Milwaukee but moved to Mexico, where she spent her early childhood before returning to the area at age 11. The experience allowed her to be a native Spanish speaker and has helped strengthen her bond with the Milwaukee Hispanic community.

Today, she is president and CEO of the Hispanic Professionals of Greater Milwaukee. “I love the fact that in some way, shape or form I’m helping impact the lives of many,” she says. With her guidance, the organization is changing perceptions of Hispanics in the city and region, helping advance Hispanic professionals and build a pipeline of young talent by increasing graduation rates of Hispanic college students.

Griselda’s experience at Marquette has had a lasting impact on her. “Marquette taught me about servant leadership and challenging yourself always,” she says. “Be ethical, work hard and remember to give back.” 

She continues to work at elevating her organization while also finding opportunities to be challenged, inspired and have an influence on a national level, having recently completed the Future Milwaukee Leadership Program at Marquette and the National Hispana Leadership Institute Executive Leadership Program.

In addition to her job as president and CEO, Griselda sits on the boards of several organizations and volunteers with PEARLS for Teen Girls, the United Way of Greater Milwaukee and the American Heart Association. Oh, and she’s doing it all while pursuing her J.D. from Marquette Law School.

“Success to me is not tied to money or titles, but rather being able to wake up every day and love what you do and know why you do it,” she says.

Fun Facts

Hometown: Milwaukee

Favorite quote: " 'I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.’ ” — Maya Angelou

Dream dinner guest: “Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.”

Marquette faculty or staff member who had an impact: "Dr. Carol Archbold, now in North Dakota, was instrumental in my guidance while at Marquette. She challenged me to reach and think about my full potential in and out of college and helped me get into graduate school and mentored me when I had no clue what mentorship was.”

Favorite Marquette memories: “Being a part of LASO, the Latin American Student Organization, and doing our annual COLORES event, a culture and performance day at the Weasler Auditorium.”

Career aspirations in grade school: “An attorney, because I knew it would make my parents happy and I wanted to somewhat be able to understand laws, why certain ones exist and have an impact on lives.”

Marquette legacy: “My sister, Diana Aldrete.”

Most influential person: “My father taught me the meaning of hard work, resiliency, a never-give-up attitude and being ethical; the rest will follow.”