Mar Velez is Director of Policy at the Latino Coalition for a Healthy California. In her role, Mar leads LCHC’s policy agenda to address the social determinants of health, ensure healthcare access for California’s Latinx and vulnerable populations, and incorporate community voice in all policy initiatives. Mar’s expansive experience in advocacy, research, and local, state, and federal government provides her with unique insight to advance equity, justice, and accountability for public good. Additionally, she has worked with grassroots leaders and organizations, particularly in the criminal and youth justice field, to pass and promote public safety measures at the state and local levels for positive health and life outcomes for youth.
Mar strongly identifies with the mission of Street Level Health Project. Mar’s father immigrated to the U.S. in the 1980s to provide a better life for his family. He has since worked various jobs, including as a farmworker and day laborer. Mar fights for economic justice and positive health outcomes for others like her dad and like many who are served by Street Level Health.
Mar holds a dual Master’s degree in Public Health and City Planning from the University of California, Berkeley. As a daughter to immigrant parents from Mexico who has had to overcome her own systemic barriers, it is Mar’s passion to undo cycles that lead to negative life and health outcomes for families like her own.