I never imagined myself running for office and now I believe it’s what I am supposed to do.
My leadership has been recognized in the following ways:
- Appointed by Governor Jay Inslee to serve as a Commissioner for Washington State Parks and Recreation. Currently serving with six other volunteer commissioners in providing policy direction for the agency.
- Featured in “Founding Mothers: Portraits of Progress” Clark County Historical Museum.
- Honored with Dr. Anita Del Rio Award for Latina Leadership and Women’s Advocacy from the National President of League of United Latin American Citizens.
- Appointed by former Mayor of Vancouver Tim Leavitt to serve on Stronger Vancouver, to make certain our tax codes are in alignment with the values of our city.
- Awarded the BRAVO Community Award by the Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.
- Recipient of YWCA Clark County Val Joshua Racial Justice Award.
- Nominee for Washington State University Vancouver’s ‘Distinguished Woman of the Year’.
- Awarded the Upstream Award by Hope Heart Institute for volunteer work to advance policy, education, services and community awareness regarding heart-healthy lifestyles.
- Board member of Clark County Volunteer Lawyers Program, collaborated efforts to hold a law clinic that creates a safe space specifically for the underserved community in Clark County.
- Completed a graduate certificate from Cornell University in Executive Women in Leadership.
I was raised in the Chihuahuan desert of El Paso, TX where my parents instilled a hard working ethic in me. My father, a union member, and my mother, a nurse, worked long days to provide for my brother, sister and me. While my parents worked long days I played outdoors after school and enjoyed playing my violin. I am proud to be a first generation graduate of Texas Tech University where I obtained my Bachelor of Science degree, and Oregon State University with my Master of Science degree.
I moved to our beautiful Pacific Northwest to start my professional career as a wildlife biologist for the Forest Service working to conserve and protect our land, water, and natural resources for the public. One of my unique experiences was fighting wildfires in Southern Oregon. In 2000, I decided to establish my family’s roots in Vancouver, and began to volunteer my time as a community advocate.
By 2006, I was applying my professional skills working in public service to build and lead the development of my neighborhood’s action plan in East Old Evergreen Highway (Columbia River) Neighborhood Association.
Which brings me to today. After decades of working for the public and volunteering my time in bringing together communities, and asking tougher questions and becoming bolder — I realized I had to step up for ALL of the people in Vancouver. When people need something done they come to me. And that’s why I heeded the call of my community. To run for office. For the people.