Dr. Jennifer Martinez, Executive Director
Jennifer has been an organizer with the PICO National Network since 2001. She worked for the San Francisco Organizing Project in 2001-2005 where her work focused on affordable housing and public education reform. She joined Peninsula Interfaith Action in 2011 as Interim Director and was made Executive Director in 2012. Jennifer is the lead staff member of our Housing and Land Use campaigns and our Bay Area regional work. In addition, she oversees staff supervision and fund development for the organization.
Jennifer has a BA from Stanford University and an MA and PhD from the University of Nottingham in England. Her graduate research focused on social movement strategies in the struggle for housing and land rights in Venezuela and South Africa. In 2011, her PhD won the British International Studies Association thesis of the year award. Jennifer has several published works and, in addition to being a participant in faith-based movement-building, continues to write about the ways in which social movements transform people and places.
Lorena Melgarejo, Lead Organizer – Immigration Campaign
Lorena is the Lead Organizer, working jointly with SFOP and the Office of Public Policy & Social Concerns, Archdiocese of San Francisco. SFOP began partnering with the Archdiocese in the fall of 2010 to work on the Justice for Immigrants Campaign. Lorena has continued that work, focusing on San Francisco’s immigrant communities. Lorena previously worked for SFOP, organizing in schools in the early 2000s. Lorena has been organizing for more than 15 years.
Teshone Jones, Community Organizer – Live Free Campaign
Teshone Jones came to SFOP after working as an organizer with the Clean Air Defense Campaign in Arlington, VA. She is a North Carolina native, and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a BA in African American Studies. Teshone’s organizing work is inspired by her experience working with a young 3rd grader that could not read. While working with this young boy, who was a product of a failing education system and a community in the midst of economic crisis, Teshone was introduced to community organizing in a local community center. Through this work, Teshone has come to know that organizing is the only way through which communities of color can advocate for a quality education system and create avenues for sustainable economic opportunity.
Aracely Mondragón, Community Organizer – Housing & Anti-Displacement Campaign
Aracely organizes in San Mateo County around affordable housing, immigration, and healthcare. Before she graduated from Stanford in 2013 with a B.A. in Comparatives Studies in Race and Ethnicity, she served as a coordinator at the chican@/latin@ community center and chaired many student organizations with educational, cultural, and political missions. Aracely’s experiences as the daughter of immigrants informs her work with immigrant communities in San Mateo County.
Adriana Guzman, Immigrant Outreach Coordinator
Adriana joined SFOP/PIA as a volunteer leader during PICO’s Campaign for Citizenship in 2013. As a volunteer she led several campaigns to stop immigrants from being deported and has done extensive outreach in immigrant congregations throughout San Francisco and San Mateo Counties. Adriana will be leading SFOP/PIA’s effort to provide information about the new drivers license and deferred action for children and parents to all immigrant congregations on the SF Peninsula.
Cynthia Hinestroza, Operations Manager
Since 2010, Cynthia’s volunteer work with Peninsula Interfaith Action has helped her to see the importance of community members raising their voices. Engagement with community organizations since 1998 has enabled her to understand the many needs in our communities and allowed her to work for change. Along with her studies in Social Communication with an emphasis in Public Relations, her experience over the past 13 years in the day-to-day school business as an administrative assistant at Garfield Charter School in Menlo Park, where she worked to ensure effective communication with staff, parents, students and the community-at-large, will inform her efforts to maintain strong relationships among individuals and communities.
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt within the heart – Helen Keller
SFOP/PIA Board of Directors
Deacon John Sequeira, Co-Chair
Leader at St Bartholomew Church, San Mateo
Gloria Stofan, Treasurer
Leader at St Peter Church, Pacifica
Jessy Delgado, Co-Chair
Leader at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, San Francisco
Leader at Star of the Sea Catholic Church, San Francisco
Success Center, San Francisco
Thrive Foundation, Menlo Park
Muslim Community Center, San Francisco