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 and minoring in Legal Studies and Chican@/Latin@ Studies. Mary is fiercely passionate about advocating for immigrant justice, marginalized communities, 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.
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. While at CIPC, she conducted research on economic justice for immigrants and refugees within workforce development and adult education policies. Mary has also focused on community-led engagement, addressing the intersections of social inequities with La Raza Centro Legal, serving immigrant and low-income communities in San Francisco. Mary was also an immigration legal intern for Curiel and Parker in Santa Monica, and an Immigration Law Advocate for unaccompanied minors from Central America with the University of San Francisco law clinic.
As an LA native, Mary hopes to bridge her experiences into Philanthropy to build collective equity.