As the deputy chief operating officer at The Raben Group, Cristina Hernandez Brown (she/her) has the unique privilege of leading the strategic creation, direction, and growth of the firm’s talent, client service delivery, and business development services. With a lifelong passion for justice and 13-plus years of experience as a human capital consultant and leader, Cristina is dedicated to building a workplace where all feel empowered to lend their backgrounds and experiences to offer unique, often untold, perspectives to public policy.
Cristina served as the senior people operations and talent manager at MAS prior to joining Raben. At MAS, she built a cannabis and sustainability micro start-up into a diverse, statewide coalition of Michigan activists and farmers. Earlier in her career, she served as a trainer, senior recruiter, and HR manager before joining Deloitte as a human capital consultant. Supporting the Department of Veterans Affairs, she led the charge to evaluate internal management training programs while providing radical solutions to eliminate bias, racism, and inequity within the system.
Cristina began her career in the United States Army after leaving her Hospitality Management program at Morgan State University. For five years, she served as a Psychological Operations Specialist in the elite U.S. Army Special Operations Command, training as an expert in persuasion, unconventional warfare, and nonviolent special warfare at the nonpareil John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina. Throughout her exemplary service, she assessed classified intelligence to influence and engage audiences, managed HR and operational planning for mobilizations and deployments for a company of 130, and served as a fierce advocate for military survivors of sexual assault and harassment pre- and post-repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and the Defense Against Marriage Act.
Now a staunch anti-war activist, Cristina volunteers as a career coach for transitioning veterans and continues to advocate for wrongly discharged transgender servicemembers and assault survivors. A Washington, D.C., native with roots in the hollers of Kentucky and San Juan, she spends her free time growing spaces for the local Black queer community and kayaking, hiking, and moonshine making whenever the opportunity presents itself.