LETICIA CAZARES, M.P.H.

A native of Chula Vista, CA, Leticia Cazares has a long family and personal history of service in the Southwestern College district going back over 60 years when her parents Norma and Roger Cazares settled into the South Bay and began a life of public service. Leticia is a product of South Bay schools: Rosebank Elementary, Hilltop High School, and Southwestern College (SWC) where her mother Norma was a counselor for 27 years (now retired). After four semesters at SWC, Leticia transferred to the Bay Area ultimately earning her B.A. in Psychology at San Francisco State University in 1998 and later in 2007, a Master’s in Public Health at San Diego State University.

Leticia has dedicated over 20 years of her personal life and career to advancing the health and well- being of underrepresented and disadvantaged communities in San Diego, primarily in the South County, the college district. Most of her career has been spent in nonprofit community health for San Ysidro Health (SYH) where she worked to increase access to health care for all, most recently leading a team that enrolled over 16,000 residents in Medi-Cal and low-cost health insurance plans throughout San Diego. During her nearly 15 year tenure at SYH she developed and managed education and prevention programs in the areas of HIV/AIDS, developmental-behavioral pediatrics, women’s and senior health; worked to increase equity and diversity among her staff and organization; created systems and programs that were inclusive of staff and community voices and build cross-sector relationships with schools, community organizations and leaders, elected officials and faith groups.

Leticia also has over eight years of policy experience as current Vice President of the Board for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of San Diego & Imperial Counties, a city commissioner for the Chula Vista Cultural Arts Commission; and as a legislative aide for Congressional District 51 (includes SWC district) in the U.S. House of Representatives where she helped to draft legislation for the Veterans Affairs Health Subcommittee and met with constituents from the South Bay/Imperial County.

Today, Leticia is a part-time lecturer at San Diego State University School of Public Health where she educates and advises students on public health career pathways and creates internship/professional development opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. She is also CEO to her small consulting business where she helps community organizations, leaders and women grow and transform their communities. She is currently working with arts and youth-serving organizations including the Old Globe, Outdoor Outreach and others. Recently, she was lead consultant on the development of the San Diego Rapid Response Network, a coordinated countywide network of organizations that educate, assist and defend immigrants and refugees.