Alma immigrated with her family from Mexico City at the age of 11 and has lived in Montclair for more than 20 years. Like the vast majority of working people immigrating to the United States, Alma’s family struggled with the culture, the language, and the lack of legal status. Although the transition was not always easy, the experience helped Alma become socially conscious at an early age.
Alma’s commitment to social justice, especially immigrant and labor rights, took root in 2008 while she was pursuing her Bachelor’s in Sociology at California State University, Los Angeles.
That’s when she joined the fight for comprehensive immigration reform and started organizing with Students United to Reach Goals in Education (SURGE), the undocumented student organization on campus. Her work with SURGE eventually led her to get involved in political campaigns throughout Los Angeles County. While working with the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, Alma saw the power of unions to empower and uplift the voices of immigrant workers.
After earning a Master’s Degree in Sociology in 2017, Alma began working for the California Work Foundation, conducting climate change education training with unions, worker centers, and other community stakeholders in Southern California, primarily in the Inland Empire. In 2019 she joined the Workforce and Economic Development Program at the California Labor Federation, where she continues to prioritize and uplift her Inland Empire community as the Southern California project coordinator.