Today, Voces Unidas is the go-to, multi-entity regional organization building and growing our community's power and influence in the central mountain region of Colorado because this is how we make Colorado's Western Slope more equitable.
We are sons and daughters of Latino immigants who came to the region in search of opportunity and have made the High Country home.
Voces Unidas de las Montañas, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, was founded in 2020 in Glenwood Springs by local Latina and Latino leaders. This charitable organization runs year-round organizing and advocacy, policy and research, leadership and nonpartisan voter engagement programs. Voce Unidas de las Montañas is a member of the Colorado Civic Engagement Roundtable and an affiliate of the national Latino civil rights organization, UnidosUS.
In 2021, Voces Unidas Action Fund, a separate 5o1(c)(4) nonprofit organization, began operations to expand our reach and capacity to influence policy and win on issues. This nonprofit organization lobbies elected officials, and runs year-round electoral work to win on progressive issues and support aligned candidates for public office. Voces Unidas Action Fund is a member of America Votes' Colorado C4 Roundtable.
Voces Unidas Political Fund and Voces Unidas Victory Fund, two independent 527 nonprofit organizations, also started in 2021, making Voces Unidas one of a few multi-entity organizations from rural Colorado with the capacity to influence policy change using most available political levers.
Latinos make up about 30% of the population in the central mountain region, yet we are not equitably represented in decision-making bodies and in leadership roles. Voces Unidas was created to elevate the voices of Latinas and Latinos, create opportunities where Latinas and Latinos can advocate for themselves, and increase Latina and Latino representation and participation in decision-making tables. For us, having political power means being able to exercise our voice and agency to lead change in our communities, and having full access, opportunity and influence in all civic and political systems. We believe this is how we can make the central-mountain region and the Western Slope more equitable for Latinas and Latinos.
Voces Unidas organizes in Summit, Lake, Eagle, Pitkin and Garfield counties. We also engage voters in 10 Western Slope counties, covering House Districts 13, 26, 57; and Senate Districts 5 and 8. These legislative districts are part of Congressional Districts 2, 3 and 7.
Voces Unidas is headquartered in Glenwood Springs with a regional office in Frisco. We also have a satellite policy office in Denver.
Our Family of Independent Organizations
We are several separate organizations, working independently to accomplish the larger mission of building community and political power for Latinas and Latinos to make the central mountain region of Colorado more equitable.
A 501(c)(3) charitable, nonpartisan organization that organizes, trains and mobilizes Latina and Latino leaders to create systemic change in their communities. This organization also engages and educates voters on policy issues and takes positions on ballot initiatives. Donations to this charitable organization are tax-deductible.
A 501(c)(4) advocacy nonprofit organization that lobbies for specific public policies and holds elected officials accountable. This organization engages voters and endorses candidates for public office. Contributions to this organization are not tax-deductible.
Voces Unidas Small Donor Committee
A registered small donor committee (SDC) in Colorado that makes direct contributions to candidates for public office. Max contribution from a natural person is $50 per year. Donations are considered political contributions. The first $50 of all eligible donations to VUAF go to the SDC. This committee is part of Voces Unidas Political Fund, a 527 nonprofit political organization.
A registered federal and state political action committee (PAC) that makes direct contributions to federal and Colorado candidates for public office. Max contribution from a natural person is $5,000 per year for federal and $725 per 2-year cycle for state. Donations are considered political contributions. These two committees are part of Voces Unidas Political Fund, a 527 political nonprofit organization.
Voces Unidas Victory Fund
A registered independent expenditure committee (IE) in Colorado that makes independent expenditures in support of or against local candidates for public office. Donations are considered political contributions. VUAF provides significant financial support to this committee. This entity is both a committee and a 527 nonprofit political organization.
WHERE WE WORK
Organizer - Roaring Fork Valley
Garfield | Eagle | Pitkin
[Grew up in Basalt]
Organizer - Summit, Lake and Eagle
Summit | Lake | Eagle
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Voces Unidas de las Montañas
Beatriz Soto is a founding board member of Voces Unidas de las Montañas and now serves as Chair of the Board of Directors. A national leader in environmental and climate justice, Beatriz currently leads the Protégete program of Conservation Colorado. Originally from Chihuahua, Mexico, Beatriz moved to the Roaring Fork Valley when she was in high school, graduating from Basalt High School in 1999. Beatriz has an architecture degree from the Instituto Tecnologico de Chihuahua and is a LEED-certified professional who continues to design high-performance buildings in the Colorado River and Roaring Fork valleys.
Secretary | Treasurer
Dusti Gurule joined the Board of Directors of Voces Unidas de las Montañas in late 2020 and currently serves as the Secretary and Treasurer of the board. She is an accomplished leader with more than 25 years of nonprofit, public service, and community organizing experience. Dusti has founded and led many nationally-recognized progressive nonprofit and political organizations and served as an Obama appointee with the U.S. Department of Labor for six years. She is currently the President and CEO of the Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity & Reproductive Rights (COLOR) and COLOR Action Fund, two state-wide organizations doing work in the central mountain region.
Brisa Chavez joined the Board of Directors of Voces Unidas de las Montañas in May of 2021. She was born in Guachochi, Mexico and was raised in Colorado. Brisa earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Colorado Mesa University with a focus in communication, literature, and English. She serves as a connector for communities of color and is passionate about equity work. Brisa has worked in public health for over 18 years. She is committed to empowering and elevating marginalized voices, and spends time volunteering with various community groups. Brisa was recently appointed to the State Board of Human Services in 2021.
Claudia Fragoso joined the Board of Directors of Voces Unidas de las Montañas in August of 2021. She is originally from Mexico City, where she graduated with a political science and public administration degree from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) before moving to the Roaring Fork Valley in 1997. Claudia has been organizing and advocating for the immigrant community in the mountain region since her early days in the valley. She currently serves as the regional manager of an Aspen-based company that employs thousands of Latinas and Latinos throughout Colorado in the hospitality, landscaping and construction fields.
While affiliated, Voces Unidas de las Montañas, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, should not be confused with Voces Unidas Action Fund, a 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization. Each independent organization does different activities in support of our missions.
Board of Directors
Voces Unidas Action Fund
Dusti is a founding board member of Voces Unidas Action Fund and currently serves as the Chair of the Board of Directors. She is an accomplished leader with more than 25 years of nonprofit, public service, and community organizing experience. Dusti has founded and led many nationally-recognized progressive nonprofit and political organizations and served as an Obama appointee with the U.S. Department of Labor for six years. She is currently the President and CEO of the Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity & Reproductive Rights (COLOR) and COLOR Action Fund, two statewide organizations doing work in the Roaring Fork Valley.
Dusti also serves on the boards of Voces Unidas Political Fund and Voces Unidas de las Montañas.
Marisa joined the Board of Directors of Voces Unidas Action Fund in September 2021 and currently serves as the Secretary/Treasurer. She serves as the Colorado State Immigration Manager for FWD.us, a bipartisan political-advocacy organization started by business and tech leaders committed to meaningful reform within the country’s immigration and criminal justice systems. Marissa graduated from Glenwood Springs High School.
Blanca Uzeta O'Leary
Blanca joined the Board of Directors of Voces Unidas Action Fund in October 2022. Previously, she served as Chair of the board of our sister organization, Voces Unidas de las Montañas. Blanca is an attorney, licensed in Texas, with a political science degree and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Texas. An active community leader, Blanca serves in numerous public roles including Colorado's Judicial Nominations Commission and most recently on the Colorado Independent Legislative Redistricting Commission. Blanca lives in Aspen and is a former chair of Pitkin County Democrats.
President and CEO; Ex Officio Board Member
As the founding President and CEO, Alex holds a seat on the Board of Directors of Voces Unidas Action Fund as an ex officio member, with limited voting powers. An experienced executive and community organizer, Alex has led other nonprofits, managed his own political consulting firm, and has extensive corporate and government experience at the senior management level. Alex grew up in a small town in Jalisco, Mexico until the age of 9. When his family moved to the United States, Alex lived in El Jebel and attended Basalt schools as an English language learner.
Alex also serves on the boards of Voces Unidas Political Fund and Voces Unidas Victory Fund.
While affiliated, Voces Unidas Action Fund, a 501(c)(4) nonprofit, should not be confused with Voces Unidas de las Montañas, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Each independent organization does different activities in support of our missions.
HONORING THE ORIGINAL PEOPLE
As a social justice organization, we respectfully acknowledge the Ute People who have stewarded the lands of the central-mountains region of Colorado throughout the generations.