Ms. Kathy Abarca is a first-generation U.S. citizen originally from Los Angeles, California. She graduated magna cum laude from Westminster College with a bachelor degree in Sociology and a bachelor degree in Justice Studies.
After graduation she was Racial Justice Associate at the ACLU of Utah where she helped establish Racially Just Utah and coordinated our first lineup of annual events.
She then spent time at the Housing Rights Center in Los Angeles working on housing discrimination research, advising self-help clients, and writing articles on the legal vulnerabilities of domestic violence victims.
She is now back in Utah and serving as the Executive Director of Racially Just Utah. She serves dual roles of ensuring growth and adherence to our organizational mission as well as directing programming: conferences, educational campaigns, cultural events, grassroots organizing efforts, and trainings.
Ms. Kathy Abarca will be continuing her education in a dual program starting in the fall of 2017. She will graduate with a master degree in public administration and a master degree in social work.
She is especially devoted to achieving racial equity in schools, criminal justice reform, and supporting oppressed and disadvantaged youth through an intersectional feminist lens. Her volunteer work has included raising thousands of dollars for public interest law students’ summer clerkship stipends, feeding day laborers, facilitating conversation with children in foster care about law enforcement, race, and their civil liberties, providing tutoring and fundraising for Whittier Elementary, teaching intersectional feminism at the Farmington Bay Youth Center, and was a Victim’s Advocate Assistant at the Davis County Attorney’s Office.
She has written on civilian review board structure and functional possibilities, collected data and wrote a report on the state of Utah law enforcement’s community complaint procedures, and contributed to a report on racial disparities in Utah’s juvenile justice system.