Staff

Carmen Medrano

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Carmen Medrano is the Executive Director at United for a New Economy.

Carmen is returning to Colorado after five years of serving in roles with the Faith in Action Network, including organizing with Colorado Dreamers to pass legislation allowing instate tuition for undocumented students, and leading a variety of civic engagement programs in six states. During her tenure she organized at a national level with Faith in Action’s Campaign for Citizenship, where she trained grassroots leaders to lead efforts across the country for passage of a comprehensive immigration bill. In the Fall of 2014, she brought her expertise and passion for social change to the Central Valley of California, where she most recently led the merger of five separate affiliate organizations into one powerhouse, that works to empower grassroots community leaders to address racial, economic, and health equity. Carmen was born in Mexico and came to Colorado at the age of 4, where she graduated from the University of Denver with a B.A. in Psychology.

Carmen’s leadership skills, organizing experience, commitment to economic justice and love for Colorado make her the perfect fit to lead UNE into our future.

Desiree Westlund Cindric

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Desiree Westlund Cindric is the Deputy Director at United for a New Economy.  She joined UNE in 2011 to build out UNE’s grassroots organizing capacity and forward UNE’s efforts to integrate organizing and policy into local power-building for justice.

Desiree came into community organizing work through immigrant justice solidarity and coalition building in Denver.  She worked previously as a labor organizer with SEIU and community organizer with Together Colorado. She led the coalition that won passage of the Wage Protection Act in Colorado in 2014 and is a founding member of Mile High Connects, a collaboration of more than 20 philanthropies and nonprofits dedicated to ensuring that all people benefit from the Denver region’s transportation expansion.

Desiree is now raising the 4th generation of her family to live in Adams county and has weekly dinners with all 4 generations under one roof. Desiree works for UNE to form part of a community that is fighting and resisting oppression, while also building the systems and change that we do want.

Favorite Quote: Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public- Cornell West

Victor Galvan

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Victor Galvan joins UNE as our first Political Field Director after 8 years at the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition. He led a robust voter integrated organizing program that targeted over 175,000 low propensity voters of color throughout Colorado. His door campaigns contacted over 75,000 of those voters to inform them of their rights to vote and how to make their voices heard on the issue that they care most deeply about.

Coupled with an organizing strategy, Victor organized those voters to engage their legislators even after elections and led to bi-partisan work on license legislation that increased access to driver’s license to undocumented Coloradans through improvements to SB13-251, the Road and Community Safety Act of 2013. During his tenure at CIRC he worked on campaigns that won passage of ASSET (instate tuition for undocumented students), Law Enforcement and Community Trust Act which did away with Colorado’s “Show me you papers” law, and expanded access to Colorado driver’s licenses for undocumented people.

Victor brings with him all of the passion and skill he has developed through his work in the immigrant rights movement both locally and nationally to UNE’s economic justice campaigns. Victor is dedicated to organizing voters year round to engage on the issue of economic justice through the lens of our most disenfranchised members of our community.

“It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love each other and support each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains.” -Assata Shakur

Allex Luna

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Allex Luna is the Organizing Director for at United for a New Economy. Allex joined United for a New Economy in 2021. He brings 10 years of organizing experience gained at the Faith in Action Network including organizational development, program development and implementation, as well as the professional development of organizers and community leaders. 

Allex grew up in Palm Springs, California in a working class mixed status home. When he was just 15 years old, he started organizing with Inland Congregations United for Change when his family and members of his community organized to end predatory towing policies that targeted low income and immigrant members of his community. This campaign inspired Allex to become a community organizer when he saw how we as a community possess the ability to move our pain into power and transformation to help our people.

Allex was a community organizer with Inland Congregations United for Change and later for Comunidades en Acción y De Fe. In 2017, he became Lead Organizer for Comunidades en Acción. Allex has organized in partnership with community leaders to improve graduation rates, worked on ballot initiatives to fund education, reclassification felony misdemeanors and prevention programs, raise the minimum wage, paid sick leave, and building a just transition from extraction economies, immigration reform, and divestment from over militarization of border communities.

Favorite Quote: “Compassion isn’t just about feeling the pain of others; it’s about bringing them in toward yourself. If we love what God loves, then, in compassion, margins get erased. ‘Be compassionate as God is compassionate,’ means the dismantling of barriers that exclude.” — Father Greg Boyle

Lorrine Banzie

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Lorrine Banzie has been the Office Manager at UNE since 2015. Her role is to manage the day to day organizational operations; from admin and bookkeeping to human resources.

Lorrine’s passion for this work stems from her personal experience as an immigrant from Zimbabwe; she came to the United States in 2000 for a better life in the midst of her own country’s internal military conflict and the desire to protect her family. This experience has guided her to be a fighter, if you want a better life you have to go out and get it. Or in the words of her favorite South African, “It Always Seems impossible until it’s Done!”-Nelson Mandela. Lorrine became a naturalized citizen in 2016!

Prior to coming to UNE, Lorrine worked 5 years at Union Taxi. While there she fought for over two years for a union and won the fight for OPEIU local 30 in 2013.

Lorrine loves to travel, enjoys watching sports such as soccer, her favorite team is Manchester United, the Denver Broncos and Basketball.


Board

Group photo of UNE board members

L-R: John Fleck, Carol Hedges, Ron Ruggiero, Raja Raghunath, Jason Wardrip, Pilar Chapa (not pictured)