BOARD + STAFF


NATIONAL OFFICE



NATIONAL TRAINING TEAM FOR THE AP/OD INSTITUTES


Silvia Esqueda, M.S., LMFT

Silvia Esqueda, M.S., LMFT

National Lead Trainer

Silvia is a master trainer and has trained and certified hundreds of AP/OD Facilitators nationwide. An immigrant from Mexico, she is a bilingual/bicultural licensed marriage and family therapist with over 25 years working with underserved communities and designing, training, and implementing community-based programs. She is a national trainer, consultant, conference speaker, and writer on Latino immigrant issues related to education and mental health. In addition, Silvia works with the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health, Promotores Comunitarios En Salud Mental Health Project, and has trained hundreds of women to become Community Health Promoters throughout California and in other states.

Luis Hernandez

Luis Hernandez

National Lead Trainer

Luis is an early childhood education specialist and training and technical assistance specialist, and holds a master’s in bilingual/multicultural education from the University of San Francisco. Luis has trained AP/OD Facilitators over five years, bringing expertise based on his work in Head Start, pre-K programs, college and universities, child care resource and referral administration, and professional development design. His expertise includes early literacy, dual language learning, adult learning practices, family engagement, changing demographics and diversity, and ECE management and leadership topics. As a regular presenter and keynote speaker at national, state, and local conferences, Luis is highly regarded for his motivational and energizing presentations.

Carolina Ramirez

Carolina Ramirez

National Training Logistics

Carolina has dedicated herself to improving the health and well-being of Southern California residents through her 17 years of work as a Community Promotora. She was one of the first Promotoras in the 14th District of Los Angeles for Planned Parenthood, a case manager for Prototype Women’s Care and the Healthy Start program in the LAUSD, and a Promotora for the East L.A. Women’s Center focusing on HIV and domestic violence prevention. She currently serves as a Community Outreach Worker/Promotora for Riverside Community Health Foundation. Carolina is also a program consultant of AP/OD. She provides support to the master trainer and coordinates national training logistics.

E. Joaquin Griego

E. Joaquin Griego

National Logistics Coordination Contractor

Joaquin resides in Albuquerque and is originally from Las Vegas, New Mexico. He has earned his bachelor’s in political science and Spanish, and a master’s in education. Joaquin’s work has included co-creating community learning approaches with youth in the historic Santa Barbara/Martineztown neighborhood in Albuquerque, and organizing youth statewide with the New Mexico Civic Engagement Partnership. He has also worked for educational advancement opportunities with migrant/seasonal farmworker populations in New Mexico. Joaquín serves on several nonprofit boards and is currently a Lieutenant with the Albuquerque Fire Rescue and provides logistical coordination support for Abriendo Puertas/Opening Doors.

Sandra Gutierrez

Sandra Gutierrez

Founder and National Director

Sandra has over 40 years of experience with legal, advocacy, and community organizations. Prior to founding Abriendo Puertas by listening to Latino parents, she developed programs for families in the child welfare system, founded the first organization to assist Central American Refugees, developed health programs for the United Farm Workers of America, and led campaigns promoting the benefits of preschool to the Latino community. Sandra served as founding member and State Commissioner for First 5 California and serves on the Advisory Board for the Too Small to Fail Initiative. She was named by the 2014 White House as a Cesar E. Chavez Champion of Change and received the 2015 James Irvine Foundation Leadership Award.

Adrián A. Pedroza

Adrián A. Pedroza

National Director of Strategic Partnerships

Adrián came to AP/OD following 10 years as Executive Director at Partnership for Community Action in New Mexico. There he adopted AP/OD as a core program that proved to be the gateway for Latino parent community engagement. Adrian led the efforts to build a sustainable revenue path for the organization that includes a Social Enterprise Center and a civic-tech app that connects families to opportunities through a data-ownership platform. Adrián previously worked with migrant farmworker families at the University of New Mexico High School Equivalency and College Assistance Migrant Programs and served on the staff for former U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman. In 2010, President Barack Obama appointed Adrián to the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, leading to six years of national focus on early childhood education. Adrián is a W.K. Kellogg Foundation Community Leadership Network Fellow, among other recognitions.

Debbie Ignacio

Debbie Ignacio

National Program and Operations Director

Debbie handles daily operations for the AP/OD program and day-to-day management of the finance and administration functions of the organization. She began her nonprofit career providing office and financial management with the Ehler Danlos National Foundation. She holds a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management, with a minor in Accounting from the University of Santo Thomas, Manilla, Philippines.

Daisy Castañeda

Daisy Castañeda

National Project Manager

Daisy provides support for AP/OD special projects. She develops and coordinates tasks related to the AP/OD Facilitator Institutes and the Los Angeles County Implementation Project. As a first-generation college graduate, Daisy is passionate about creating change and equal opportunities for all. She is currently completing her master’s degree in public policy.

Magdalena Benitez

Magdalena Benitez

Consultant, Los Angeles County Implementation Project

Magdalena has worked in partnership with families and community leaders to strengthen families for over 20 years. As a proud Master of Social Work, she is an expert facilitator of conversations enhancing openness to cultural understanding and humility. Magdalena is a native Angelena.

Josefina Bojorquez

Josefina Bojorquez

National Project Coordinator

Josefina supports the day-to-day operations of the AP/OD program. She assists in the coordination of local and national training logistics and is ready to lend her knowledge and skills to provide exceptional support. She received her bachelor’s degree in Economics, with a minor in International Relations from Connecticut College. 


NATIONAL ADVISORY BOARD


Dr. Jeanette Betancourt

Dr. Jeanette Betancourt

Senior Vice President, Community and Family Engagement

Sesame Workshop

Hedy Nai-Lin Chang

Hedy Nai-Lin Chang

Executive Director

Attendance Works

Sandra Figueroa-Villa

Sandra Figueroa-Villa

Executive Director

El Centro Del Pueblo 14

Yvette Sanchez Fuentes

Yvette Sanchez Fuentes

Division Director, Child, Youth and Family Services

Community Action Program of San Luis Obispo (CAPSLO)

Dr. Eugene Garcia

Dr. Eugene Garcia

Professor Emeritus

University of California, Berkeley and Arizona State University

Dr. Yolanda Garcia

Dr. Yolanda Garcia

Dean (Retired) Child Development and Teacher Education

Sonoma County College District

Dr. Ed Greene

Dr. Ed Greene

Vice President, Children, Youth & Digital Media Literacy Initiatives

Hispanic Information and Telecommunications Network, Inc.

Dr. Octavio Pescador

Dr. Octavio Pescador

Founding Research Associate

UCLA Paulo Freire Institute

Sylvia Puente

Sylvia Puente

Executive Director

Latino Policy Forum

Dr. Luis Reyes

Dr. Luis Reyes

Dean of the Graduate School

New Mexico State University

Helen Sanchez

Helen Sanchez

President

Arevalo Sanchez, Inc.

Yasmina Vinci

Yasmina Vinci

Executive Director

National Head Start Association (NHSA)

Dr. Valora Washington

Dr. Valora Washington

Chief Executive Officer

Council for Professional Recognition

Dr. Marlene Zepeda

Dr. Marlene Zepeda

Professor Emeritus in the Department of Child and Family Studies

California State University Los Angeles