I believe that all kids need support from engaged, compassionate adults who believe in them, see their challenges first-hand, and connect them with the resources they need to realize their dreams. It takes a team to make our students successful, so I will focus on identifying needs and collaborating with community members, leaders, teachers, staff, and anyone working in or near these spaces to find partners to support our kids.
As the daughter of a working-class Mexican family, I grew up raised by my mother, grandmother, aunties, and godmothers in Los Angeles. When we left LA, we lost a big part of our support system. My parents worked long and odd hours to ensure that my siblings and I had what we needed, but we struggled emotionally and financially without our community. When I reached driving age, we made do with one car by waking up at 4 am to take my dad to work; this way, my sisters and I could use the car to get to school. My parents supported my educational journey by asking, “Did you do your homework?” “I got a call from the school saying you missed 1st period. What happened?” and “You were supposed to be home by 3:45 pm; where were you, young lady?” Some assumed my parents did not care about my education because they were not physically present at community council meetings, board meetings, or every parent-teacher conference, but trust me; they cared and showed it by working hard to provide for our family and asking about my attendance and grades.
Despite my challenges as an ESL (English as a Second Language) student, school was my refuge. I went to school, was on dance company, played soccer, and worked at IHOP as a server to pay for my athletics participation fees. I had to learn to manage my time wisely to meet my responsibilities as a daughter, student, athlete, and worker. At times, I would feel overwhelmed and sad, but I would keep pushing because I remembered the sacrifices made by my parents and grandparents so that I could have a better life than theirs. In my junior year of high school, Mr. J, my career advisor, recommended me to a conference called Meeting of the Minds, a program for first-generation college students, which was held in Seattle, WA. At the conference, I met others with similar experiences to mine. This was my first time out of state and being a part of an experience that had me considering possibilities outside of working after graduation. As graduation approached, Mrs. T, a representative from the U of U, came to the career center at Granger High and talked to me about college, federal financial aid, and scholarships. She told me her story – she, too, was the child of immigrants and a first-generation college student with similar worries and dreams for her family. She told me I was worthy and capable. That day, her story made the invisible facts of my life feel seen. I felt like Mr. J, and Mrs. T believed in me.
I would not have made it without my parents and people in the school who took the time to know me and connect me to resources and opportunities for kids like me. They all taught me about engagement, compassion, and the importance of collaboration between schools and outside resources. Today, I am a proud graduate of Granger High with a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and a Master’s in Social Work. Everything I have learned from life, at school, and from the community has inspired me to become a champion for the issues our community cares about, including mental health (well-being), community engagement, and renewable energy.
Why am I running?
As an educator and social worker, I have been on the front line of answering calls for help from students and the broader community. I love serving the community, but the last two years have been hard, especially for residents of the West Side. Our community has experienced significant instability, losses, and trauma. As a person with expertise in mental health and trauma, I know we will experience the effects of COVID for years to come. More than ever, we need someone who has lived the same challenges faced by our students and who understands the importance of making decisions that are thoughtful and that prioritize the wellbeing of our students, teachers, and school personnel. Together, we can build a future that our kids can be proud of.
• Proud Granite District graduate who has lived the same challenges many students face.
• Educator and Social Worker with 15 years of experience ensuring access, promoting equity, and fostering a sense of belonging for everyone.
• Priorities focused on our collective recovery from COVID, mental health resources, community engagement, and renewable energy.
Enjoying time in nature with her husband George and dog luna
Reading a good book
Taking care of her plants
Making tea blends
Being an Auntie
We need everyone's voice at the table. I want to pursue every avenue to engage and strengthen the trust and confidence in our ability to lead together.
Kids are better prepared to learn when their well-being is intact. Similarly, teachers and employees are best able to serve their students when their well-being is intact. I want to ensure that every decision prioritizes the mental health and well-being of our students, teachers, and school personnel.
We deserve clean air and safe environments. I want to ensure that we make decisions that decrease our carbon footprint and are fiscally responsible.