Daniel Alejandro Leon-Davis is determined to live authentically and beyond fear. Obstacles throughout his journey have only become fuel for his achievements and have shaped his path to a greater purpose.
A Venezuelan native, Daniel lived in Florida with his mother as an undocumented immigrant for 19 years. His mother’s endless sacrifices in pursuit of a better life continue to be the reason behind his tenacious spirit.
His strive for excellence despite his fears and difficulties became evident upon graduating from high school with full scholarships to five universities; all of which he could not accept due to his legal status in the country. After 93 scholarship inquiries and countless rejections, he was awarded the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation scholarship with which he was able to transfer to American University from Seminole State College of Florida.
Not having a source of income or further financial assistance, Daniel struggled to survive as a student but that did not stop him from completing his undergraduate degree in both international relations and music theory and becoming the first openly undocumented immigrant to intern at the William J. Clinton Foundation.
As both an undocumented immigrant and gay Latino, the course of Daniel’s path changed in June 2013 when the Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act that barred the federal government from recognizing same-sex unions. This very moment allowed him to marry the love of his life and become a permanent U.S. resident.
His experiences inspire him to amplify the narratives of the underserved communities he’s a part of. Daniel established and continues to pave his own path in the social impact sector creating and conducting uplifting campaigns including the nationally recognized Immigrant Heritage Month and Sons and Brothers. His dedicated advocacy has earned him appointments as a member of the MTV’s Look Different Good Look Panel and VH1’s Save the Music Young Benefactors.
Every piece of Daniel’s puzzle has allowed him to grow into his own artistic identity and helped him evolve as a better and more authentic version of himself. From his mother’s fashion and interior design beginnings to over a decade as a musician and professional dancer, his creative roots continually influence his work.
As the current Co-Founder and Senior Creative Director at SOZE, a trailblazing social-impact agency, Daniel and his team continue to bring people together in support of causes and campaigns they deeply believe in. SOZE’s most recent campaign, #IAmAnImmigrant, brought together celebrities, influencers, activists and organizers from across the country to showcase the power of the immigrant community and challenge the negative narratives portrayed by media in America. Daniel also strategizes content for Russell Simmons as a social media director to the renowned entrepreneur, devoted activist and CEO of Rush Communications.
Recently accepting himself as an artist in an effort to live beyond fear of expectations, Daniel has helped curate art for exhibits featured in the Smithsonian for the Sons and Brothers campaign and alongside his team, led an exhibit on Torture showcased in the United Nations headquarters. As Daniel continues to create and make an impact in his communities and across the nation, artistry and creativity have now become a part of his authentic being and his mission to live freely.
Daniel currently resides in Brooklyn with his husband Dom and is the proud father of a 14-year-old Jack Russell named Ralph.