About the Author

Robert Valencia is an internationally recognized journalist and public affairs specialist with more than 10 years of experience. His work marries the importance of storytelling and public policy discourse to create commonsense legislation. He has crafted and implemented communications strategies for the United Nations, the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, the Center for American Progress, The Opportunity Agenda, the Ocean Recovery Alliance, and the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, among other non-profit organizations. He has also worked closely with CONNECTAS, a network of more than 150 journalists across the Western Hemisphere, to foster editorial collaboration and policy analysis.
He has also written more than 100 articles and scholarly publications for Truthout, openDemocracy, Fusion TV, The Miami Herald, World Policy Institute, Global Voices Online, the World Politics Review, and the Georgetown and Yale Journal of International Affairs, on issues related to drug policy, human rights, U.S. elections, freedom of the press, immigration, racial and criminal justice in the United States, and economic integration across the Western Hemisphere.
Media outlets, scholars, and governmental institutions have cited such body of work: the Mexican Senate’s Center of International Studies used the Georgetown Journal’s pieces to analyze the impact of the Pacific Alliance economic bloc in the Mexican economy, while the Brookings Institution cited his analysis on conflict resolution in the Americas. Likewise, his extensive work on drug policies and its effects on mass incarceration and racial justice for the World Policy Institute has been mentioned or republished on the UK-based Beckley Foundation, the Harvard National Security Journal, the U.S. Army War College, the University of Toledo Law Review, the Brooklyn Journal of International Law, and the Chilean Ministry of National Defense. Some of these publications have defended the importance of easing draconian drug legislation in the Americas and the United States, which in recent years have seen marijuana legalization in Colorado, Washington state, and Washington DC. 
Additionally, Former President of Mexico Carlos Salinas de Gortari discussed his position on the war on drugs by citing Robert’s article for the Council on Hemispheric Affairs titled, “War on Drugs: A Pan-Regional Fight” in his book Democracia Republicana: Ni Estado Ni Mercado, Una Alternativa Ciudadana (“Republican Democracy: A Citizen’s Alternative”).

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