Crystal Salinas MacKinnon
Crystal Salinas MacKinnon grew up in South Texas and came to North Carolina in 2016, by way of Chicago, in pursuit of the opportunity to continue her education [read: moved in with parents]. She earned her B.A. in Philosophy followed by her Master's in Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of North Carolina Greensboro. Crystal is also a certified community mediator.
Having been incarcerated herself over a decade ago, Crystal profoundly empathizes with how stigmatization, whether over race, gender, socioeconomic status, disability, criminal record, etc., can significantly impede an individual’s ability to participate in the most basic aspects of society.
Prior to the formation of The Cellphone Project, Crystal has long been engaged in mutual direct aid via donated cellphones, grassroots fundraising, volunteer work and deep advocacy for houseless, low-income, and marginalized community members. Having hit rock bottom herself, Crystal is dedicated to those seeking to rebuild their lives.
Crystal is a regular volunteer at ABCCM’s Transformation Village and serves on the Advisory Board of ABCCM’s Costello House.