Alicia Ybarra

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Alicia Ybarra

Template:TOCnestleft Alicia Ybarra is a first generation Chicana activist.

Early radicalization

Alicia Ybarra grew up in Los Angeles and by the age of 14 became involved with MEChA (Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan), a student group organizing Latino youth. She attended Stanford University, where she majored in political science and continued to work with MEChA[1].

Stanford Daily

In 1986 Alicia Ybarra was a Copy editor on The Stanford Daily.

Student politics

Alicia Ybarra became active in the United States Student Association and became part of the staff that same year. While at USSA she became a GROW Trainer with the Midwest Academy[2].

Colluding to defend USSA connection

May 2 1991, Stanford students voted on the referendum to create an ASSU financial-aid office But several senators raised questions about the ASSU's connection with a national student lobby organization United States Student Association.

To lobby effectively, the senate will "maintain a membership in the United States Student Association and participate specifically on financial aid issues." Although the ASSU has been a member for several years, many students say they have never heard of the association and wonder why it and the lobby office have become big issues now.

But supporters said the financial-aid office is the only way for Stanford students to have an impact on the federal debate on the reauthorization of government funding for financial aid. The United States Student Association is fighting to "increase access to highe education on the federal level," said Pierre Barolette, the membership service coordinato for the Washington, D.C.-based association. "Our main objective is to improve federa financial aid," Barolette added. "We spend ove 90 percent of our time working solely on financial-aid issues." As the only student advocacy group with i full-time Washington lobbyist, the organiza tion also plans to open a regional office in Sacramento to lobby the California Legislature next year. It now represents more than 300 community and four-year colleges, including man} state college associations, Barolette said. The association has worked on other campus-related issues, including supporting the passage of the Disability Rights Act, the Civil Rights Act and the Violence Against Women Act. The group also actively lobbied against the Persian Gulf war.


The ASSU has been involved with the association for five years, said senator Naomi Onaga, a sponsor of the financial-aid office referendum. The ASSU currently pays $1,000 per year in dues to the national organization, and supporters here hope to double that amount next year to support the Sacramento office. Onaga and freshman Danny Ruderman are currently two of 60 voting members on the association's national board of directors, and former Council of Presidents member Stacey Leyton is the West Coast representative of the organization. Leyton completed her masters degree in history last October.

The association also refuses to make a list of member schools available because "it might be used as a mailing list," according to Alicia Ybarra, an association staff member and 1990 Stanford graduate.

Students First COP slate member John Overdeck, at a recent senate meeting questioned a trip Leyton made to Cuba in December. While in Havana, Leyton attended a meeting of the International Union of Students and the Federation of University Students in Cuba and heard a three-hour speech by Fidel Castro. Leyton said she went as an "American university student" and Davis said the association did not send her or pay for her trip. The association's constitution prevents membership in any international student organization. At a separate public meeting with Leyton and Ybarra, Bone questioned the involvement of association leaders in the now defunct League of Revolutionary Struggle, a Marxist-Leninist organization, and the Unity Organizing Committee. Leyton said the Unity committee is a national multiracial organization working for democracy and progressive change. Ybarra and Leyton said some leaders of the association are members of these groups but "there are no ties in any way between these organizations," and "individuals' private political beliefs are not part of the election process."

'Is it important to have a national representative to lobby on issues such as financial aid? If it is, then Stanford must work with USSA.' said Leyton.[3]

"A call to build an organization for the 1990s and beyond"

Unity, January 28 1991, issued a statement "A call to build an organization for the 1990s and beyond" on pages 4 to 6.

This group was a split in the League of Revolutionary Struggle which soon became the Unity Organizing Committee.

Those listed as supporters of the call included Alicia Ybarra, coordinator USSA, recruitment and retention project, Washington DC. .

Unity guest editor

Guest editors of Unity, newspaper of the Unity Organizing Committee, May 1992, were Gina Hernandez, Juan Montemayor and Alicia Ybarra.

Citizen Action

After USSA Ybarra, Alicia was recruited by Citizen Action to open a new office in New Mexico where she served as the Program Director for a single-payer healthcare campaign[4].

Union/political work

Alicia Ybarra then returned to the east coast where she became the founding Director of Hispanic PAC USA in 1994 and later went on to join the 1996 electoral political action drive of the Service Employee International Union NY Local 1199. She has also worked with Unite For Dignity and Jobs with Justice in Miami, Florida organizing and training Latino and Haitian immigrants. She is currently working as the Training Director of SEIU International[5].

Midwest Academy

The 2009 Midwest Academy board of directors consisted of[6];

2014 Midwest Academy board

In 2014, the Midwest Academy board consisted of;


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