Dusti Gurule is an accomplished executive leader with more than 20 years of national, state and local public sector and nonprofit experience. She has an extensive track record in collaborative leadership, strategic planning, public relations, organizational management, public engagement and coalition/ partnership building. Dusti is a founding partner in Dimension Strategies, LLC, a new political affairs full-service agency adding a new dimension to Colorado’s political landscape. Dimension Strategies offers clients a deep understanding and knowledge on the issues facing women voters; energy, environment and climate change policies; and reproductive rights and health care issues across urban and rural areas. With their tactical expertise, the firm will guide clients through fundraising strategies to ensure they meet their financial goals and report them accurately. Dusti served as a political appointee under the Obama administration, representing the U.S. Secretary of Labor in a seven state region where she developed connections between community based stakeholders and federal, state and local entities. As the founding Executive Director of the Latina Initiative in 2004, Dusti built the organization to a nationally recognized civic engagement and leadership entity, launching programs like Colorado Latina/o Advocacy Day and Latinas Increasing Political Strength (LIPS). Dusti has received numerous awards and accolades for her leadership in civic engagement and community building.
Mykaela is a proud Burqueña, born and raised in New Mexico. She earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism with a minor in transborder studies at the Walter Cronkite School at Arizona State University. It was there she began reporting on the complexities of transborder economics and immigration policy, particularly between the U.S. and Mexico, and sharing the stories of folks who are deeply affected by them. These stories inspired Mykaela to pursue a career in womxn’s rights, after seeing the disproportionate ways in which Latinx womxn experience injustice. COLOR has provided her a space to reimagine liberation for our communities alongside the fiercest team, and it’s truly an honor. Mykaela is a sweet tea connoisseur who loves alliteration, the free press, and every dog to ever exist.
Christina was born and raised in Dearborn, Michigan and received her degree from the University of Michigan, majoring in Sociology and Women and Gender Studies. Christina has nearly eight years of organizing and running electoral work experience. She got her start as an organizer with Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan, where she worked with communities in the metro-Detroit and Flint areas to advocate for policies that impacted access to abortion and health care. She worked in coalitions to center the stories of patient advocates through electoral and storytelling programs. During her time with PPAM, Christina also worked with partners around water justice for Flint residents – implementing water filter donation programs, and distributing accurate information to immigrants around clean water at the height of the Flint Water Crisis. Christina moved to Colorado in 2019 and began working with America Votes as their Colorado Program Director, where she had the opportunity to work with many progressive organizations. She supported partners as they built out their electoral strategies, coordinated direct voter contact programs, and facilitated coalition meetings around a shared strategy, relevant trainings, and ballot measure support. Prior to joining the COLOR team, Christina served as Board Chair for COLOR Action Fund. Christina has a passion for reproductive justice and social justice – she knows that the community must be at the center of everything we do, and wants elected officials to know that as well.
América Ramirez joined COLOR in Aug. 2019. América is a bi-cultural Mexicana-Americana and daughter of immigrants, born and raised in Colorado. She earned her bachelors’ degrees in integrative physiology and ethnic studies with a certificate in public health at the University of Colorado Boulder. At CU, América began working with pre-collegiate youth and advocating for social justice among historically marginalized communities. Then, she incorporated her passion for reproductive health when working for a pregnancy prevention program for teen girls, a majority identifying as Latinx. América is passionate about reproductive justice, social equity, dismantling institutionalized oppression, civic engagement among historically disenfranchised populations, and access to quality education and healthcare – and she is in her dream job at COLOR. América enjoys traveling, live music, and engaging in introspective platicas and spending quality time with family and friends.
Aurea Bolaños Perea is a Tijuana-native from San Diego, CA. She earned her Master’s in Political Science with an emphasis on legislative behavior and Latinas in politics from CSU Chico in 2019. Aurea’s involvement in political movements and political consulting began during her time in UC Merced as a Campus Organizing Director where she was in charge of implementing and strategizing the response student activists would take throughout the UC system. From then on, she has trained community members, non-profit organizers, elected leaders, and soon-to-be-elected leaders throughout the state of California and the nation about political organizing, political strategy, effective communication skills, and more.
As someone who cares about the political empowerment of every woman, Aurea believes that all of our hermanas deserve to be involved in every sphere of government which is why she seeks opportunities where Latinas are the driving force in enacting policy change.
Katherine joined COLOR in August 2020, and has policy and legislative support, research and analysis, and advocacy as primary functions. Katherine is a queer Mexican/Salvadoran-American (Chicana pride!), born and raised in Texas. She has a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where her passion for social justice, particularly around migration, gender, and health began. Following graduation, Katherine moved to Istanbul, Turkey and spent two years teaching and traveling to learn more about refugees in the country and the humanitarian crises causing such migration. Upon her return to the States, Katherine began working with the International Rescue Committee (IRC) in Los Angeles in refugee resettlement and job readiness for asylum-seekers. These experiences motivated Katherine to pursue a dual-Master’s in Social Work and International Development with a certificate in Global Health at the University of Denver. During her graduate career, Katherine served with the City of Denver’s Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs, as a high-school social worker for pregnant and parenting teens, and as a humanitarian research associate specializing in migration, gender-based violence, and mental health. Katherine’s lived experiences with abortion, visual disability, and as a woman of color have emboldened her to work at the intersection of policy, community organizing, and social justice. She loves dancing, cooking, camping and playing with her cat, Nova.
Elizabeth Marie Taveras is Cuban-Dominican and a Miami, FL native. She earned her degree at the Florida International University with a focus in digital media communications and political science. Her work in Miami includes working with various grassroots organizations like Dream Defenders, Florida Immigrant Coalition, and the Miami Workers Center. She was also a Kairos fellow which focused on the intersection of tech and racial justice. Elizabeth became a community organizer through Occupy Miami and has since been involved in taking action on several issues, varying from climate justice, prison divestment, justice for Palestine, immigrant justice, and feminism – always in the struggle towards the liberation of Black and brown communities. Upon her arrival to Colorado, she began her work with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 105 and worked alongside Denver janitors, healthcare workers, and airport workers. She believes in the power to change narratives through strategic and meaningful communications.
Elva joined COLOR as the Donor and Events Coordinator in March of 2020 during her last semester at CU Boulder. With an extensive background in community organizing and abortion destigmatization, Elva was very motived to fight for Reproductive Justice in the Latinx community upon graduating. Elva is a first-generation Mexican-American and the proud first woman in her family to receive a Bachelor’s degree. Receiving a BA in International Affairs with a focus in Latin America and a Minor in Spanish in May of 2020, Elva came on full time to transform the way COLOR looks at development and donor relations. When she’s not in the streets advocating for systemic change or in COLOR’s office telling you about the amazing work of our organization, you can find Elva tending to her 40 house plants, reading a good book, cooking tamales, or cuddling her 2 pups.
Gina is an immigrant from Morelos, Mexico. She got involved in the social justice movement since 2007 after she witnessed firsthand the abuses towards the immigrant community. She has worked with several immigrant rights organizations and believes that fighting for justice is her passion. COLOR gives her the perfect opportunity to continue working for justice and helping women and children in the community. She earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the Instituto Tecnologico de Zacatepec in Mexico. She moved to Colorado 17 years ago, and now lives in Denver with her beautiful daughter, Gianella.
Jennifer Arreola-Soria (she/her/ella) is a first-generation Mexican-American pursuing her Associate of Arts degree in History at the Community College of Denver and will be transferring to Metropolitan State University of Denver to finish her Bachelor’s degree in Spring of 2024. She first joined COLOR as a LIPS participant in 2020. After her time as a LIPS participant, Jennifer joined the canvassing team to defend abortion access in Colorado. She then applied for the Youth of COLOR Fellowship as an Organizing Fellow in 2021 and carved her space in the organization. Her time as a youth advocate in High School and recent work with COLOR has now brought her full circle to this staff position. Jennifer’s passion for Reproductive Justice stems from the strong women in her life who taught her to always speak up for what she believes in, and that with hard work – great things can happen. Jennifer enjoys traveling, talking endlessly about history and its funny way of repeating itself, and spending time with friends, family, and her two dogs Loki and Yoda.
Alexis Moncada (she/they/ella) is a Chicana organizer from southern Florida who received her Bachelor of Social Work at Florida State University and is pursuing her Master of Social Work at the University of Denver. Alexis has been involved in political movements for nearly a decade, ranging from elections to women’s rights, workers’ rights, LGBT rights, immigrant rights, and liberation for all racially oppressed groups. Proudly identifying as a lesbian, Latina woman, she hopes to bridge solidarity among all working people despite differences. Wherever there is struggle among working people in this state, you can find her there, in unity with our community.
Vilma Reynoso joined COLOR in May 2022, and has a background in operations management and organization as well as writing and editing. A proud first-generation Argentine American and the first in her family to graduate from college summa cum laude with a Bachelor’s in English Writing and minor in Literature, Vilma grew up in California and watched her parents struggle financially, emotionally, and physically as immigrants who could not speak English. Having lost both of her parents to heart disease, Vilma realized how economic justice and racial inequality contributes to ill health and a difficult life. Her childhood experiences, education, passion and activism for human rights and womxn’s reproductive justice spurred her to join the COLOR team to help better the lives of Latinx people. She is thrilled to be contributing to COLOR’s mission as the Operations Coordinator and accounting support. Vilma is a blogger and essayist, loves to garden, lives a vegan lifestyle, and drinks all of the coffee.
As COLOR’s Director of Grants and Evaluation, Vic (they/them) leverages 20 years of grassroots and community-centric fundraising expertise to foster trust with and secure multi-year investments from state and national funding partners for a combined annual $2.1M budget of a multi-entity enterprise. As well, they help assess and communicate the impact of 6+ distinctive youth-to-elder statewide programs training and educating participants on sexual and reproductive health as well as leadership. Vic publicly advocates for health equity as a recognized opinion leader and published author in the reproductive justice field.
Their grassroots leadership includes professional, volunteer, and board roles with efforts focusing on worker’s rights, immigrant rights, human rights, education, and health. Vic has a bachelor’s in anthropology from the University of Colorado Denver and a master’s in nonprofit management from Regis University, is a Transformative Leadership for Change 2019 fellow, a 2014 Regis University Affiliate Faculty, and a 2014 Mayoral Appointee for the Denver Women’s Commission.
As a political creative, gender migrant, crip migrant, and cuir feminista uplifting the struggles of the latine diaspora, Vic is an active storyteller, spoken word performer, and visual artist committed to stigma busting.
Yadira Solis joined COLOR in Aug. 2019. Yadira Solis is a first-generation Mexican American and first-generation student graduate with a bachelor’s in psychology, minor in political science and a Spanish/English translation certificate, and a master’s in social work at Metropolitan State University of Denver. Key components of social work guide her groundwork of equality, social justice, and diversity as an advocate that our differences bring us closer together. Yadira has worked with First Generation Initiatives with first-gen students and under the Center for Equity and Student Achievement, and the College Assistant Migrant Program. As part of her community outreach she has been a board member for Adelante Mujer Incorporated which supports young Latinas to achieve a university education. Additionally, she has served as a Court Appointed Special Advocate for Colorado children in the foster care system. Lastly, she provides translation services for Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network. In order to connect to her roots, she dances Mexican Folkloric Dancing, enjoys spending time with family and traveling. One of her life mottos is that in order to become successful I have to grind harder than a molcajete.
Preferred gender pronouns: She, Her, Hers| From Greeley, Colorado | B.S. in Accounting (University of Denver) and Master in Public Administration, Concentration in Nonprofit Organization (University of Colorado – Denver) | COLORistx since Oct. 2013
Favorite thing about life in Colorado: being close to family, good friends and the mountains
Favorite local restaurant: still finding my favorite
Dream job: travel the world and be a wine connoisseur (critique regional wines)
Job Kathy wouldn’t do in a million years: prison guard
Best thing about working at COLOR: the AMAZING women I work with and all the food!
Greatest extravagance: my large Jacuzzi bathtub and my closet
Talent Kathy would like to have: speak Spanish fluently
Victoria (she/her) joined COLOR in November 2021. She is from San Antonio, Texas, and identifies as Latinx/Tejanx Her dad’s family is from Chile; her mother’s family is Mexican and Mescalero Apache with a rich Tejano music history. Her mother is a Tejana singer, her grandpa had a mariachi band, and her great uncle is considered the father of Tejano music. Following the tradition of music in her family, Victoria spent years playing violin in orchestra, and plays piano, guitar, and other instruments. She has a band, solo project, is involved in the music scenes of Denver/San Antonio, and is a part of the Text Me When You’re Home collective in Denver. Victoria has a very sweet 3 year old black lab named Metzi.
Victoria finished her BA in Ethnic Studies this past summer, and is currently finishing her last year for an MA in Education Foundations, Policy, and Practice, as part of a 5 year concurrent degree program. Her areas of passion are ethnic studies, abolition and the relationship between disciplinary policies and the school-to-prison pipeline, and youth engagement in social justice.
She is also interested in decolonial studies, abortion access (including doulas, self-managed abortions, fundraising), harm reduction, and sex worker rights. Victoria started and helps run a book club where their mutual aid is centered around the houseless community and incarcerated siblings in Yanaguana Somi-Se’k (San Antonio/Bexar County).
Sayuri is a proud Latina born in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua and moved to Denver, CO. when she was 8 years old. She is a first- generation student at Regis University currently studying Business Management with a specialization in Marketing and a Minor in French. She is also bilingual in Spanish and English. Sayuri graduated from the LIPS program in May 2021 and has since continued with COLOR as a Youth of Color Communications Fellow. Sayuri is passionate about reproductive justice, immigrant rights, language access, education, and gender equality. Sayuri loves getting involved in her community and wishes to be able one day give back. She wishes to work in a community where she can encourage other Latinx youth to grow and be successful. Sayuri enjoys the outdoors, concerts, exploring the city and spending time with friends and family.
My name is Saul Alfaro, my pronouns are he/him/his and I am the new organizing fellow for COLOR. I am from Los Angeles California who is also a first generation Guatemalan American. I moved to Colorado about 20 years ago. I have always been big into working out and still do almost daily. I played tackle football for six years from middle school through high school. I have always wanted to do things that many others fear doing such as playing tackle football and advocating for things such as abortion access and reproductive rights. Over the past three years I have found love for non-partisan politics and have gained a lot of experience working in jobs similar to the one I have just been hired for. I have a great passion for supporting abortion and abortion access because it is an infinitely complex and layered issue that needs allies to support such as myself. For as long as I can remember I have always given 110% to everything I do and do not plan on ever stopping.
On April 27, 2023, join us as we celebrate 25 years of Reproductive Justice in Colorado!
Buy your ticket to COLOR’s 25th Anniversary Celebration today.