Lori Kaplan is the President & CEO of the Latin American Youth Center (LAYC). She has lead LAYC to its national prominence as an award-winning network of youth programs in Washington DC since 1987.

Under Kaplan’s direction, LAYC has helped guide thousands of low-income youth to better opportunity, while creating pioneering organizations and public charter schools. Kaplan serves on the board of DC Alliance for Youth Advocates, and Youth Radio and Youth Media International, and serves as an advisor to the Clinton Global Initiative America on the Reconnecting Youth work group. Kaplan has received numerous awards including Washingtonian of the Year in 1997, the Lewis Hine Award for her work on child labor issues, the Children’s Champion award by DC Action for Children, Community Champion Award from the Hispanic Heritage Foundation, and being named one of Washington’s 50 influencers by the Washington Informer Charities.

Posts by Lori Kaplan

Today’s Dreamers, Tomorrow’s Leaders

Each spring, at our gala, the Latin American Youth Center (LAYC) honors a community leader who has made a deep and lasting difference to the young people LAYC serves. In 2016, it’s our special pleasure to recognize Donald E. Graham. Don’s name is synonymous with The Washington Post, which he led for three decades as…

Leveling the Playing Field GED

Thank You DC Board of Education for Leveling the Playing Field

The Latin American Youth Center (LAYC) has always believed in the importance of the GED and have been preparing young people to take the exam for decades. Many youth who walk through our doors have left high school for very complex reasons including the need to work, because they are facing family problems, are young…

Honoring our Heritage and Building Our Future

Since its inception, LAYC has been a place where we embrace the cultural identities and histories of each individual who walks through our doors. Over the years, we have grown from a small grassroots organization to a regional network of youth centers, school-based programs, and charter schools embracing the idea that young people who maintain…

Thoughts on the NCLR Report, “Resilient Latino Youth: In Their Own Words”

By Eric Macias, GED Instructor On April 30th, Representative Tony Cardenas from California hosted a report briefing on Capitol Hill where a panel of experts talked about the adversity young Latina/os face that tends to lead them towards detention centers. The briefing was mainly based on the recently released NCLR report, “Resilient Latino Youth: In…

Spring Break for Many, But Not for All

Spring is just around the corner. For many of our youth, spring is so much more than sunny and warm weather. As our LAYC youth start to shed their jackets, springtime is their slide into spring break, hunting for summer jobs, and more. For many high school seniors, “senioritis” has set in. Students have fewer…

Honoring Mayor Marion Barry, Friend of LAYC

It was in the early 1980’s when I first met Mayor Barry and recognized that he was both a skilled politician and absolutely dedicated to young people in the District of Columbia. In his first term — the early years of the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) — LAYC operated a small summer program. The youth…