Pronouns: she/her/ella

Roots: México

Job Title: Executive Director/CEO at Centro Unido Latino Americano

Community Leadership: McDowell Chamber of Commerce, Impact Health, McDowell Mission Hospital, McDowell Technical Community Collage, and Marion Rotary Club

Marion, NC

Margarita Ramirez

Executive Director/CEO at Centro Unido Latino Americano

As the current Executive Director at Centro Unido Latino Americano, Margarita understands that her community's voices, cultural strengths, values, and experiences are crucial to their mission and vision. Being a first-generation Latina who migrated from Mexico and grew up in the United States, she has experienced firsthand the struggles of accessing resources and navigating complex systems which influences her approach for her community work. As Glenn Martin said "People who are closest to the problem are closest to the solution." and she firmly believes that. Their success is determined by working with and listening to their community. They engage with their community by inviting them to their programming, sitting with them, listening to what they have to say, and paying attention to their needs. In only the past three years, she has grown a team of two part time to now a staff of twelve members and six seasonal contracted staff and grew her rural organization to reach national recognition. In less than three years, she was able to increase the general operating budget from $88,000 to over a million, bringing more resources to the rural Latino community in western North Carolina.