MA Arts Politics Class of 2020
BA Religion, Florida State University
Maya Contreras is a professional writer, actor, and voting rights advocate. Her love of the arts, politics, and the intersection of the two have given her a substantial background in both.
As a professional writer Maya has conducted interviews with comedy television stars Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson (Broad City); Comedians' Bill Burr, Stephen Merchant, Samantha Bee, and John Oliver; Hip-Hop legends KRS-One and Pharoahe Monch; and iconic fashion designer Calvin Klein.
Maya's plays have appeared Off-Broadway, Let The Devil Take the Hindmost, and Off-Off-Broadway, The Bloodline of Shadrick Grace, On The Use and Disadvantages of Leaving, and The Flowers. Her short film 'Final Portrait' was an official selection in England's Winchester Film Festival.
As a performer, Maya hosted the Emmy award-winning 13-part series, Brewed in New York, for PBS (2019).
As a lifelong advocate, Maya organized food and clothing drives for the Resurrection House, Inc. in Sarasota, FL, organized lectures on women’s income inequality, in Tallahassee, FL, and organized multiple music festivals for the non-profit organizations' Hands on Atlanta and Amnesty International. Contreras then became involved in political organizing. She utilized her skills as a storyteller to educate others on voter suppression, voter disenfranchisement, and voter investment issues. She continues to meet with elected officials in New York and Washington D.C.
Contreras co-founded All Women’s Progress Think Tank because she saw the need for an intersectional feminist policy institute dedicated to improving the lives of women and marginalized groups through research and education.