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Hispanic Heritage Month 2016

Young Latinos of the Obama White House: Meet Vivian Graubard

Young Latinos of the White House: Meet Vivian Graubard 2:34

Vivian Graubard, 26 is a founding member of the president's "Geek Squad," better known as the U.S. Digital Service.

As one of Time Magazine's "30 Under 30 World Changers" - Graubard knows that her work has had a positive impact. She recalled once stumbling upon a big box of unanswered letters at the White House.

"They were letters, some in Spanish, that people had written to the president, that just didn't get answered," she said.

RELATED: Young Latinos of the Obama White House: Witnesses, Participants in History

She explained that there was an unofficial policy that the letters weren't answered because the president didn't speak those languages. "But I thought many were likely from U.S. citizens and they deserved a response."

The Miami-raised Latina said she thought of her own family; some spoke English better than others but all should be able to write to the president.

So Graubard put her tech skills to use and helped build a system to catalog and answer foreign-language letters. Obama is now known for being the first president to respond to letters in Spanish, French, Portuguese, and other languages.

Graubard was part of a team that helped update the White House comments line and bring it into the 21st century. Any concerned citizens who call today can thank Graubard for such innovation.

RELATED: Young Latinos of the Obama White House: Meet Leah Katz-Hernandez

Little did she know when she graduated from American University and took a short-term gig volunteering at the presidential correspondence office that it would turn into a full-time job where she would make lasting contributions.

Graubard told NBC that one of the challenges of working for the government is that you don't see change overnight. "Everything is long-term," she said. "You don't fix things overnight. The worst thing is that you sometimes wake up and day after day and it is hard to see the progress you are making."

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