The YWCA’s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday Morning

The YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday MorningThe YWCA\'s Women For Racial Justice Breakfast Served Up Hope Monday Morning

By BRANDON VILLALOVOS

6:49 pm | October 23, 2017


Community leaders and organizations came together Monday morning to celebrate working towards racial justice in Pasadena and beyond at the Pasadena-Foothill Valley Young Women’s Christian Association 15th Annual Women For Racial Justice Breakfast at the Pasadena Hilton.

Each October, the YWCA honors a woman at the forefront of the fight towards racial justice and brings together the Pasadena community in recognition of their work and to further the cause, giving the honor this year to Angelica Salas who leads the Coalition For Humane Immigrant Rights Los Angeles (CHIRLA).

“At the YWCA we’re developing girls into leaders, we’re celebrating women’s accomplishments and advocating for community free of racial pressures and violence,” said YWCA Pasadena-Foothill Valley executive director Jessica Kubel.

“It’s the continued support of concerned individuals such as all of you here today that create a consistent, positive presence in the lives of women and girls in the Pasadena area. We serve to be a safe place for them and a soft place to land,” Kubel added.

Angelica Salas, executive director for Coalition For Humane Immigrant Rights Los Angeles (CHIRLA), was The 2017 Racial Justice Award recipient.

Salas helped win in-state tuition for undocumented immigrant students, established day laborer job centers that have served as models for the rest of the nation, and led efforts to allow all California drivers to obtain a driver’s license, according to the YWCA website.

As part of a national coordinating committee, Salas helped convene a coalition of organizations in California which have successfully mobilized millions of immigrants to demand comprehensive immigration reform including legalization with a path to citizenship, family reunification, and the protection of civil and labor rights.

“We all know that the work happens as a collective, as a team. It’s because of my colleagues and it’s because of it’s amazing immigrant members who seek to advance our mission, to advance the human and the civil rights of the immigrants and the refugees. It’s about them, it’s about, there is no way that I could do the work I do without the incredible and powerful collective spirit of our members,” said Salas.

Salas is also a leading national spokesperson and organizer on federal immigration policy.
“We’re fighting to re-imagine our immigration laws even as we’re defending ourselves against the attacks that are coming our way. We need to be resilient, survive, and exist to change our laws so they’re aligned with our values,” said Salas.

“Let’s be part of that great American tradition of making our country live up to its values,” Salas added.

The YWCA Pasadena-Foothill Valley also announced PCL Construction as a corporate recipient of the Racial Justice Award for its dedication to employment equity and inclusiveness.

PCL has been recognized as one of Los Angeles’ Best Places to Work and is a devoted supporter of philanthropic organizations throughout Southern California.

The event’s keynote speaker was Edina Lekovic who is the director of policy and programming at the Muslim Public Affairs Council and a leading voice on American Muslims and an inter-community builder between diverse faith traditions.

Through her work with the Muslim Public Affairs Council, Lekovic has advocated on behalf of American Muslims in news media, interfaith, community, and pop culture spaces and has appeared on leading media outlets, including CNN, FOX News, Huffington Post, and NPR.

“We continue to assess and implement a curriculum that gives young girls what they need to be empowered to thrive in their environment, to succeed in school, and to develop into healthy adults who are engaged in the community,” said Kubel.

The YWCA Pasadena-Foothill Valley was established in 1905 and has long been a pioneering voice in the fight for racial, economic, and gender equality in the region. From its pre-1920 racial integration plan to the early 1970s founding of the nation’s first Big Sister program and the area’s first rape hotline, the YWCA has been active in responding to the needs of women, according to the organization’s website.

Today over 2 million people participate in YWCA programs at more than 1,300 sites across the United States. Globally, the YWCA reaches 25 million women and girls in 125 countries.

“We want to see these young ladies, we want to see women empowered beyond education and career, and encourage lifelong learning in our community,” said Kubel.

For more information and to get involved, visit http://www.ywca.org/.