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Krista Ramirez-Villatoro, Entertainment Media Fellow

National Leadership Program, Summer 2021

Krista Ramirez-Villatoro headshot

Krista Ramirez-Villatoro

Krista Ramirez-Villatoro is an Entertainment Media Fellow in RespectAbility’s National Leadership Program for the Summer of 2021. RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community.

After becoming paralyzed in 2005 from a spinal lymphoma, Villatoro found her love of art as she struggled to transition to her new life. Taking photographs and videos became the perfect medium for self-expression. Villatoro went on to take every video production class offered in school and eventually received her B.A in Cinema and Media Arts from Biola University in Southern California. This is where her love of cameras translated into a passion for story. During her time on campus, Villatoro founded the Girl in Film Club (GIF) to create an intentional space for female filmmakers to collaborate on projects. Since then, her work has focused on the real life narratives of underrepresented minorities ranging from undocumented migrants to individuals with disabilities. As a Latina with a disability, Villatoro quickly came to understand her role in fighting for on-screen representation that is accessible and intersectional. Her current portfolio includes documentary short films, virtual reality projects as well as installation pieces. Villatoro’s goal is to become a director of photography on projects that highlight the experiences of those with physical disabilities.

In the fall of 2021, Villatoro will be pursuing a Masters’ degree in Design and Media Arts from the University of California, Los Angeles. She is looking forward to exploring a multidisciplinary approach in regards to how we use different mediums to tell stories. Villatoro will also be UCLA’s first ever adaptive tennis player to compete at a collegiate level. She hopes her time on campus will lay the groundwork for a robust adaptive athletics program that represents the school’s spirit of inclusion for all.  Ultimately, Villatoro hopes to create real life representation of individuals with disabilities in sports.

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RespectAbility is a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities for and with people with disabilities. Learn more about the National Leadership Program and apply for the next cohort! Contact BenS@RespectAbility.org for more information.

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Meet the Author

Krista Ramirez-Villatoro

Krista Ramirez-Villatoro is pursuing a Masters' degree in Design and Media Arts from UCLA. Her goal is to become a director of photography on projects that highlight the experiences of those with physical disabilities.

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