Meet Our Team!

CABC is governed by a statewide Steering Committee and serves 200 organizations across the state. Our coalition is a partnership of nonprofits, public agencies, and for-profit organizations united in our commitment to create economic opportunity for all Californians.

 

Andrea Luquetta is CABC’s Managing Director. She has over twenty years of progressive leadership helping statewide and national non-profit economic justice organizations to build power, design strategies and campaigns, create sustainable work plans, secure and leverage resources, and increase leadership capacity to close systemic wealth gaps and end economic oppression for people of color, immigrants, and other historically marginalized communities.

Previously, Andrea was deputy director of the California Reinvestment Coalition where she designed and lead successful campaigns that centered immigrant leaders in the fight for economic justice after the 2016 national election; negotiated over $14 billion in new investments in low income communities; and stopped the state of California and the top three national banks from charging families fees just to access state income support benefits. Prior to that, she was a staff attorney at Western Center on Law and Poverty, focusing on affordable housing, tenant rights, and fair housing. She graduated from UCLA School of Law’s Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy in 2006 where she also completed a Concentration in Critical Race Studies.

Andrea is a formerly undocumented immigrant from Colombia; her family gained legal permanent residency through the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986. She lives in Richmond with her wife, Kathie, their toddler, Lucia.

Jessica Bartholow is a legislative advocate at the Western Center on Law and Poverty with over a decade of experience in anti-poverty organizing, advocacy and program development at the local, state and national level. Jessica is considered an expert on issues of poverty, its causes, consequences and public and private efforts to reduce or ameliorate it.

She has led in coalition to pass a budget proposals and over a dozen pieces of legislation relating to financial empowerment, asset building, disability benefits, employment training and job creation. Jessica holds a Master’s Degree in Political Science.

Sandra Espadas is the Senior Director, Community Development at Hope Through Housing Foundation. She has extensive knowledge in community organizing, data and policy analysis, building police-community relationships and strategic use of media. Ms. Espadas has worked with various stakeholders in communities throughout the County of San Bernardino to improve their quality of life.

She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and Spanish Literature from the University of California, San Diego.

Kristin McGuire has built her career advancing social justice movements for disadvantaged communities across Southern California. She has over a decade of community and political organizing experience and works tirelessly to empower communities of color. Currently, as the Director of Partnerships and Organizing at Young Invincibles – California, Kristin works to amplify the young adult voice on matters that impact them the most.

Prior to joining Young Invincibles, Kristin worked for Los Angeles County Tobacco Control and Prevention Program where she played a vital role in shaping and implementing some of the most progressive tobacco policies in Southern California, namely smoke-free housing, parks, and outdoor areas in Compton, California. Kristin holds a Bachelor’s degree from California State University, Dominguez Hills. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and is a proud PTA mom.

Noe Paramo is on staff of California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation as Sustainable Rural Communities Project Co-Director and Legislative Advocate. For 15 years, Noe worked for California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc. at the Modesto office. Noe was the Advisory Committee Chair for the Central Valley Health Policy Institute at CSU Fresno. Noe’s work focuses on social justice policies supporting farmworkers and low-income rural communities.

Mr. Paramo holds a BA degree in Political Science from UC Davis and a JD from Hastings College of the Law.

Solana Rice was raised by a Black, midwestern family that made tremendous emotional and physical sacrifices to get by. Dedicated autoworkers, food & retail workers, entrepreneurs; her family gifted Solana with a tremendous work ethic and a passion for making the world a better place for people of color. Solana is a dedicated advocate aiming to shape the most vibrant, inclusive, and sustainable economy this country has yet to see.

Prior to starting Liberation in a Generation, Solana was Director of State & Local Policy at Prosperity Now where, under her leadership, she built strong advocacy partnerships with organizations in the field and advanced dozens of policies in nearly half the states in the nation. Prior to joining Prosperity Now, Solana served as a director for financial security initiatives at PolicyLink. Solana has a Master’s in City Planning from MIT, where she researched the integration of individual development accounts into community development services. She holds a B.A. in architecture from Washington University in St. Louis.

Julia Root is the Senior Workforce Policy Associate for the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO), a national nonprofit social enterprise that provides a transitional job and employment services to returning citizens. CEO is the largest reentry workforce provider in the country and operates ten offices and serves approximately 2,500 people statewide.

Based in Oakland, Julia advocates for increased investment in reentry workforce programs and for the removal of the unnecessary and overly punitive barriers to employment experienced by people with a criminal history. In this role, Julia works with coalitions, advocates, policymakers, staff and participants to help inform the development and implementation of policy that advance economic opportunity for people with a criminal record. Current areas of focus include child support reform and the suspension of a money order while a parent is incarcerated, occupational licensing reform, SNAP and food access, and asset building opportunities, including the abolishment of criminal justice fines and fees. Julia is a Women’s Policy Institute 2020 Fellow with the Women’s Foundation of CA. She has an MPA from NYU and a BA from UCSD.

Rita Saenz, of Sacramento, began her pubic service career as a community organizer in East Los Angeles. She was staff at the Mexican American Opportunity Foundation when it was primarily offering Department of Labor programs and the East Los Angeles Health Task Force when it was first planning for local health and alcohol abuse and alcoholism programs.

She has worked statewide with the Association of Alcoholism Councils, sat on the National Councils for the National Institute on Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, was appointed by Governor Brown as Director of the Office on Alcoholism, and the then the Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs, and was Director of the CA Department of Social Services, appointed in 1998 by Governor Davis and serving until 2004.

She has served as faculty during different years in an international training organization, the Academy for Coaching Excellence, now known for its Thriving Changemaker’s programs.

Nalleli Sandoval is United Ways of California’s Senior Director of Programs. Nalleli works closely with local California United Ways on the coordination of various programmatic efforts, such as enhancing free tax preparation assistance, promoting and strengthening Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) outreach, CalSavers retirement savings, affordable broadband internet, and others, through program and advocacy. She comes to United Ways of California with a background in nonprofit management, public government, and research and advocacy.

Nalleli holds a Masters in Social Welfare from the University of California Berkeley, and is deeply passionate about promoting the economic empowerment of low-income communities.

Marisabel Torres is the Director of California policy at CRL and works to advance strong consumer protections and promote responsible lending policies in the state. Before joining CRL, Marisabel was a senior policy analyst for the Wealth-Building Initiative at UnidosUS and focused on banking, homeownership, and retirement policies affecting Latino families, as well as immigrant access to financial services. Marisabel’s career at UnidosUS began as a policy generalist in the department of Legislative, Congressional, and Political Affairs, before being an analyst in the Economic and Employment Policy Project. Her work included analyses of federal investments in Latino-serving programs, the Latino electorate, and barriers to federal retirement programs for low-income Latino workers. Torres has authored or co-authored several publications, including The Future of Banking: Overcoming Barriers to Financial inclusion for Communities of Color (2019), Banking in Color: New Findings on Financial Access for Low- and Moderate–Income Communities (2014), Latino Financial Access and Inclusion in California (2013), and Affording Citizenship and Securing a Sound Financial Future (2012).

Marisabel holds a bachelor’s degree in international affairs from the University of Mary Washington.