Voces Unidas de las Montañas was founded in May 2020 by local Latina and Latino leaders and is the first Latino-created, Latino-led advocacy non-profit in Garfield, Eagle and Pitkin counties.
Founder Alex Sánchez and co-founders Beatriz Soto, Janeth Niebla, Jasmin Ramirez and Blanca Uzeta O'Leary created the organization 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.
OUR VISION AND MISSION
Here at Voces Unidas, we envision a tri-county region where Latinas and Latinos are thriving, engaged and leading in all of our communities.
We do this by creating opportunities where Latinas and Latinos advocate for themselves, actively participate in all civic institutions and take leadership roles in all decision-making tables.
We are unapologetically Latino, and we take pride in who we are, what we represent and our contributions to the cultural, civic and economic fabric of our valleys.
We believe in self-determination and unleashing the power within each Latina and Latino.
We work with our own community to create the change that we want to see for ourselves and our families.
We fight to end unjust and inequitable social constructs that keep Latinas and Latinos from wealth, opportunities and power.
“I love that Voces Unidas is a Latino organization for Latinos. This is a fairly new organization that has opened the door for leaders to be empowered and it feels like our voices are finally being heard. Especially with COVID, Voces is working so hard in so many ways in all our valleys to make sure every member of our community is being helped no matter immigration status."
Cecilia Rios -- Local Community Leader & Latino Network '20-'21 Cohort
“I support Voces Unidas because it's a powerful Latino-led non-profit organization that has tirelessly fought for our Latino community to be heard and represented locally. They are always working to make sure that we have a voice in major discussions that affect our communities. They have been leading discussions on language justice and advocating to ensure our valley's residents have the tools they need to be involved, informed, and considered."
Junior Ortega -- Local Community Leader & Latino Network '20-'21 Cohort
“Voces Unidas has been an awakening for me. I never knew that I could be part of changing systems that affect me and my community. The values of the organization align with mine, and they help amplify my voice and help elevate my leadership to support my community."
Elizabeth Velasco -- Local Community Leader
Interested in joining the team? Check out the jobs section.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Voces Unidas de las Montañas
Beatriz Soto is one of the original co-founders of Voces Unidas and now serves as Chair of the Board of Directors. A national leader in environmental and climate justice, Beatriz currently leads Defiende Nuestra Tierra for the Wilderness Workshop as its founding program director. 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.
Yesenia Arreola joined the Board of Directors in late 2020 and currently serves as the Treasurer of the board. A fierce advocate of public education, Yesenia is the Executive Director of Colorado Mountain College's Strategic Initiatives Office for Student Affairs. Yesenia was born in Chihuahua, Mexico but grew up in the Roaring Fork Valley since the age of 5. A first-generation college graduate, Yesenia has earned an associate’s degree from CMC, a bachelor’s degree from Regis University and a Master of Social Work from the University of Denver. Yesenia also serves on the boards of the Latino Community Foundation of Colorado and Aspen Community Foundation.
Dusti Gurule joined the Board of Directors in late 2020 and currently serves as the Secretary 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 non-profit and political organizations and served as an Obama appointee with the U.S. Department of Labor for six years. She is currently the Executive Director of the Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity & Reproductive Rights (COLOR) and COLOR Action Fund, two state-wide organizations doing work in the Roaring Fork Valley.
Brisa Chavez joined the Board of Directors in May of 2021.
HONORING THE ORIGINAL PEOPLE
As a social justice organization, we respectfully acknowledge the Ute People, who have stewarded the lands of the Colorado River, Eagle River and Roaring Fork valleys throughout the generations.