Esperanza Tervalon-Garrett is a queer, Afro-Puerto Rican woman, and a native daughter of Oakland. Born to Black activist parents and raised in the social justice movement, Esperanza has spent the last 17 years building political power for working class, immigrant, and communities of color in Oakland, around the state of California and across the country. Esperanza was the first woman of color to lead a 501c3, 501c4 & PAC collaborative civic engagement formation focused on mobilizing progressive voters of color in the United States. Her ability to build grassroots power in neighborhoods, at the ballot box, and at City Hall has earned her solid reputation as a savvy electoral strategist, a seasoned political organizer, and a power-building innovator among Social Justice activists and Philanthropic leaders.
Esperanza’s unique role and work at the intersection of progressive politics and the social justice movement has earned her dozens of awards including: The 2010 Redford Center Art of Activism Award, the Oakland League of Women Voters’ Democracy Award 2014, and the Alameda Labor Council’s Community Organization of the Year 2015. Esperanza is married to wife Christine and her proudest accomplishment is her brilliant and tenacious son, Santiago. They live at Dancing Hearts Ranch, a 16-acre ranch in the Cascade Mountains of Southern Oregon.