Meet Our Staff!
Ms. Rivera is a veteran nonprofit executive, community activist, educator, and lifelong resident of Milwaukee’s near south side.
For more than 25 years she has provided strategic and operational leadership across several communities and organizations including: United Community Center, SER Jobs for Progress, Hunger Task Force of Milwaukee, United Cerebral Palsy of SEW, Girls Scouts of Milwaukee Area, Voces de la Frontera, etc. In 2008, she opened a consulting firm named Xecutiva to provide executive level consulting and services to organizations and professionals. She has also taught preschool, alternative education, adult basic education, and undergraduate and graduate courses. It is this diverse range of deliberately crafted experiences that she says, “has her committed to a holistic approach and unity in and across community.”
She was a community activist early on in her teen years including starting a youth council at United Community Center where she was an AODA peer counselor. She trained at the Gamaliel Foundation in Chicago, IL, when hired by The Hunger Task Force of Milwaukee (HTFM) to organize single mothers and volunteers at food pantries. Although she makes clear she was the novice and youngest organizer, HTFM’s efforts spun off what we now know as MICAH (Milwaukee Inner-city Congregations Allied for Hope). Her involvement in community issues, working to engage others in the political process, and political advising has remained consistent over the years. Her efforts include founding The Lula Project, a Latina Research and Leadership Institute; Campaign Manager for Judge Phil Chavez, who was an unknown candidate in an upset election and the first Latino in that position; and establishing the Latino Elected Officials group. In terms of the Latino population that SOC serves, her reflection was “God created me a Latina and gave me to a family in the inner-city, it is an indication to me that I will always have a responsibility to the things that I am.”
Among her educational and training achievements, she holds a certificate in organizing; a certificate in Bible studies; graduated Summa Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in Community Education; has a Master’s degree in Administrative Leadership where she was on fellows; and has entered the final stages of her Ph. D. in Adult and Continuing Education, with a minor in higher education, and a certificate in Teaching and Learning (focused on online learning) where she also has been a continuous fellow. Her dissertation research is focused on Latina leadership. She is a recognized beginning scholar including having her work published, presented and awarded. “Education is a cornerstone, flint stone and capstone to many impoverished and marginalized people.” is what she said about helping others learn about community development.
Like many families, her grandparents arrived here in response to intense labor recruitment during the industrial boom. They worked long and dangerous hours in factories and her grandmother lost much of one arm in a tannery. This is where she said she learned her work ethic and concern for workers. Her mother purchased a humble home in Walker’s Point and worked as an educator at the Council for the Spanish Speaking’s Guadalupe Head Start Program. She grew up in the shadows of the Rockwell Clock Tower among the children of the other Polish, Irish, German, Mexican, Puerto Rican, and other immigrant’s grandchildren. She purchased her own home on Historic Layton Boulevard more than a quarter of a century ago where she continues to live. She says her personal conviction is to “live where you lead.”
Ms. Rivera responded to the announcement with, “It is an honor to come along side my community as we move forward to realize our hopes and address our hardships. I am confident that we will be able to contribute to a thriving South Side and a stronger Greater Milwaukee by building leadership, unity, and engagement among SOC residents and in all sectors of our neighborhoods.”
Development and Marketing Manager
Edith was born and grew up on the Southside of Milwaukee for a large part of her childhood. Even after moving away from Milwaukee she has continued to stay connected over the years. She enjoys traveling, writing poetry and short stories, and discovering and reading new books in her free time.
She has worked with nonprofit organizations located on the Southside of Milwaukee for several years and worked directly with neighbors in the community.
Ana has a long history of social justice and community engagement spanning back to her years as a youth. She has worked and volunteered in nonprofit organizations for more than a decade and a half. She enjoys traveling and trying new foods in her free time.
NSP 17 Organizer • CPU Coordinator • Safety Lead
Travis was born and raised on the south side and is still currently a neighbor on the south side. Prior to his role at SOC, he has had many different types of jobs over the years in construction, security and factory work.
Travis has been active with the KK River Neighbors in Action and currently serves as President of the group. He is also an active volunteer at various events and gets involved with many organizations. He has also participated in several trainings with the WILD Institute.
In his free time, Travis likes to visit local parks with his kids and also volunteer in the community.
NSP 15 Organizer
Stacey was born and raised in the south side of Milwaukee and has a strong genuine love for the community. Stacey is bilingual and experienced in finding vital resources for many in the neighborhoods.
Stacey is a graduate of Wisconsin Lutheran High School and studied Language Interpretation at WCTC.
Youth Coordinator and Supervisor
Although she hasn’t always lived in Milwaukee she is now raising her family here. Born on the Southside of Milwaukee Jeannette has a special connection to Milwaukee.
Jeannette is a mom of three and has always had the heart and dedication for helping the youth around her. She loves to help her community members from volunteering at community events to helping at her children’s school Jeannette truly enjoys helping the youth.
Public Allies Fellow
Youth Coordinator II and COVID Coordinator
A Public Ally in their 2nd year, Jinx does service with non-profit organizations so as to help improve the quality of life in MKE communities. Raised in the south side of Milwaukee, Jinx has always had a deep appreciation for the south side community. Being bilingual, as well, Jinx is excited to be on SOC’s team.
Jinx has had experience working with the youth for almost a decade now and hopes to expand their experience in youth development, especially for marginalized groups of youth. They are also a resident care worker for teens in the foster care system and loves doing so.
Jinx is an avid long-distance longboarder and hopes to compete in downhill-racing one day. They enjoy making art of all medias or playing string/electric instruments in their spare time.
TBD • Housing Resources
Please contact the SOC office for more information.