Mary Cruz is a Program Manager at the Durfee Foundation. She is a graduate from the University of San Francisco, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Politics and Latin American Studies. Mary’s interests lie at the intersection of immigrant justice and language access, stemming from her experience growing up as the daughter of Indigenous Zapotec immigrants. She brings 5 years of collective experience working for immigrant rights in the Bay Area, Los Angeles, and Sacramento to philanthropy.
Prior to the Durfee Foundation, Mary worked with the California Immigrant Policy Center (CIPC) where she supported CIPC’s government affairs, policy, and advocacy work in Sacramento. Mary has also focused on community-led engagement, addressing the intersections of social inequities impacting immigrant and low-income communities with La Raza Centro Legal. She previously provided direct services as an Immigration Law Advocate working with unaccompanied minors at the University of San Francisco law clinic.
Mary currently serves on the steering committee of Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy’s Los Angeles Chapter. She is a member of the California Immigrant Integration Initiative (CIII) collaborative hosted by Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees (GCIR). In 2019 Mary was selected as a Hispanics in Philanthropy (HIP) Líderes Fellow, based on her commitment to racial equity and social justice.
As an LA native, Mary hopes to bridge her experiences into Philanthropy to build collective equity.