Join our team!

We have two positions available, read below to see the details. ¡Gracias!



The CAPACES Leadership Institute (CLI) was established in July of 2011 to prepare emerging leaders in the Latina/o communities of the Mid-Willamette Valley to lead community-based non-profits and for public service.  In Spanish, CAPACES means both “we are capable” and “capabilities”. The acronym stands for Colaboración Adelantando a Personal de Apoyo para Capacitarnos, Enlazarnos y Solidarizarnos (Collaborative Assisting Personnel to Advance our Capacity, Engagement and Solidarity). However, the work began as a project out of PCUN, one of our sister organizations, back in 2003.

The CAPACES Leadership Institute was founded to prepare leaders with the political consciousness and skills needed to lead and support social justice work. We envision a Latina/o community with equitable leadership representation in all sectors that is working to address social disparities. Our guiding values are commitment, courage, humility, equity and justice, sacrifice, and sustainability.

TURNO Support Coordinator

Compensation: $15 per hour (average of 20 hours weekly)

Job ControlExecutive Director

Direct Supervisor: TURNO Program Coordinator      



Talento Universitario Regresando a Nuestros Origenes (TURNO) translated to University Talent Returning to Our Origins is a youth program offered to youth ages 14-18 who attend Woodburn High School’s five academies. TURNO is designed for low income, farmworker, and immigrant youth to learn what social justice is and how it affects their personal day to day lives. It is intended to provide support, guidance and preparation for long-term leadership in the social justice movement and to motivate youth to pursue a higher education and give back to their communities. Youth meet weekly and focus on enhancing their political consciousness through education, civic engagement and leadership development. Developing leaders in our community is part of our mission as an institute, and through this program we begin investing in future leaders.

The ideal candidate will be inspired by and fully committed to CLI’s vision and mission, and will represent the organization in a professional manner among partners, community organizations, families and individuals.



The TURNO Support Coordinator is a part time position that works alongside the Leadership Team and the Coordinator to help carry-out the program activities and ensure program success. The TURNO Support Coordinator reports to the TURNO Program Coordinator.


The Support Staff Coordinator will be required to:

  • Assist in recruit, supervision, and mentoring of new youth participants
  • Assist with the facilitation of weekly after school sessions;
  • Assist students through the completion of youth-led community involvement projects that are aligned to the organization’s and program’s goals
  • Contribute towards creating a culture of respectful collaboration among staff, partners, volunteers, and parents to ensure participants’ safety and the delivery of a culturally inclusive program;
  • Assist with the collection, maintenance, and delivery of program data that may be requested by program stakeholders (funders, partners, etc.)
  • Assist with fundraising related activities for the program
  • Assist with the coordination program event activities (field trips, conferences, trainings)
  • Apply safety practices in all facets of the performance of duties, contact emergency services as needed, and act as a Mandatory Reporter for the safety of the participants
  • Support the long-term and strategic program planning, implementation and vision ensuring that benchmarks are established to measure outcomes of the program
  • Identify and help coordinate community resources to achieve program goals (i.e. volunteers, materials)
  • Help foster and cultivate an environment where trust, respect, professionalism, teamwork, open communication, and strong work ethic are highly valued
  • Attend professional development trainings as needed and share knowledge learned
  • Assist with other organizational activities as needed



  • Commitment to the mission, vision, and values of CLI
  • Experience working with youth in community, work, or academic settings and creating positive youth development activities
  • Knowledge of different computer programs such as word, excel, and power point
  • Strong organization and time management skills
  • Ability to collaborate with diverse populations
  • Current Criminal Background check to be completed prior to employment
  • Certification or Accreditation: CPR/First Aid Certification and Food Handler Certification within first 60 days of employment
  • Bilingual/Bicultural Spanish – English
  • Strong communication skills
  • Ability to travel


People’s Representative Coordinator 

Salary Range: $35,000- $40,000 annually + Medical & vision benefits, pension

Job ControlExecutive Director

Direct Supervisor: Jaime Arredondo



People’s Representative (PR) is a new leadership program focused on public service training. PR has been designed to serve as a gathering place within the CLI for social justice minded Latina/o leadership in the Willamette Valley. Participants will learn what it takes to successfully position themselves for public service seats with decision making power (i.e. appointment, committees, advisory groups, etc.). The goal of the program’s cohort model is to increase Latina/o political representation, bridge the inequities facing working class populations, and foster new political leadership coming from low-to-moderate income, farmworker, and immigrant backgrounds.



Under the direction of the Executive Director the PR Coordinator’s primary task will be to implement the program’s training component. The coordinator will also assist in developing the programs overall structure. The coordinator will  work one-on-one with fellow staff and volunteers assigned to support PR including facilitators, guest speakers, and a council of advisors. The coordinator will be required to engage staff from sister organizations, network with similar training programs in the region, and be up-to-date on civic leadership vacancies in Marion and Polk counties. Additionally, the coordinator is responsible for familiarizing themselves with and assisting the institute’s general programming as needed.This position may require some evening and weekend hours.



  • Supervise program volunteers
  • Lead the recruitment of program participants
  • Oversee implementation and facilitation of program trainings
  • Attend the organization’s staff meetings
  • Prepare program materials and training day logistics
  • Guide cohort participants to successful completion of training series
  • Ensure facilitators leave a class copy and materials (if new and not in curriculum)
  • Coordinate People’s Reps Development Team Meetings
  • Coordinate meetings with the PR internal and external council of advisors
  • Data entry
  • Create/edit program powerpoint presentations
  • Create/edit program brochures, flyers, e-newsletters, mailings
  • Maintain program materials in secure storage (such as Dropbox or Google Drive)
  • Inform the Executive Director by reviewing & analyzing special reports; summarizing information; identifying trends
  • Coordinate with administrative personnel on calendar and use of the building
  • Assist with the facilitation of other CLI programs as needed
  • General support of other CLI programs as needed
  • Assist organization’s external communication, social media, monthly e-newsletter, and bi-annual appeals as needed
  • Assist development director with grant/foundation reports as needed



  • Speak and write Spanish and English
  • Strong written and oral communication skills
  • Data entry and data entry systems experience
  • Basic computer skills and computer software knowledge (such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Gmail)
  • Program development experience in the area of education
  • Experience assisting with the coordination of leadership/education training programs and event logistics



  • Bachelor’s Degree or educational/work experience in any of the following areas: Political Science, Community Development, Sociology, Communications
  • Demonstrate knowledge and experience in program development for Latina/o leadership
  • Experience working in adult education programs
  • Experience with group facilitation
  • Experience evaluating programs, collecting surveys, creating assessment tools
  • Experience working in the non-profit sector



To apply for either position:

Submit a cover letter and resume to: and in the subject line specify the position which you are interested in.

Deadline to apply:

Open until filled. Initial review of applications will begin January 29th.


Maestra of Ceremonies: Sandra Hernández

Sandra Hernández, Co-Master of Ceremonies
6th Anniversary Celebration

Position: Coordinator of Latinos Unidos Siempre (LUS), staff since 2015
Education: B.A. in Political Science from Willamette University

Sandra took the time to speak with CLI ahead of July 12th’s anniversary event. Here’s what she shared…

How many youth are involved at LUS?

“25 to 100 youth involved throughout the year. It varies by season.”

When did you first learn of CAPACES Leadership Institute?

“I took a tour of CAPACES in 2014. I was amazed to see the CLI Building and the positive spirit in there.”

Do you consider yourself a leader?

“I see myself as a leader that shows others how to accomplish goals through actions rather than by words.” Sandra adds, “Leadership is also about always learning, being humble. Oh and another one is always being open minded and not judgmental to the knowledge that [others] are carrying because that’s their experience.”

What do you think of CAPACES’ efforts in developing youth leadership?

“I think CAPACES has done a good job of creating youth leadership through TURNO. It’s not easy. The culture of youth is changing so quickly, organizations like CAPACES and LUS need to adapt because youth culture changes so quick.”

Where do you see your developing leadership taking you in the next five years?

“I see myself finishing up a Ph.D in Education because higher education is where I see myself. The more I’m involved in social justice work – my heart just keeps going towards education. I really want to become a professor and educate others.”

Is there anything else you would like the CAPACES Network to know?

“I’m really nervous and excited to be MC’ing the event for CAPACES. Oh and you can find LUS on our like page at Latinos Unidos Siempre. We’re very responsive.”

Meet Yadira our 6th Anniversary M.C.

We know the current political climate affects people in different ways. Many of us in the social justice movement have expressed feelings of fear, anger, and anxiety. However, despite hard times we want to share that our excitement has not diminished. July 12th marks our 6th Anniversary and we want you to celebrate with us!

At the CLI, we help foster the leadership who will navigate our immigrant community through the xenophobic and hate filled landscape. Yadira Juarez is a wonderful example. A first-generation immigrant, former farmworker, and mother of three children, she exemplifies the type of leaders we help develop. Yadira has been involved in the CAPACES Network even before our non-profit organization status was official. Since 2013, Yadira has worked with the Salem/Keizer Coalition for Equality as the Early Learning Program Director. Previous to that role she was employed by FHDC in the “Leyendo Juntos” program.

Embracing leadership in difficult times is not easy. Yadira states that for others leadership comes naturally. But admits that for her it’s taken a lot of effort getting over her fears. Yadira shares, “I understand the fear of our immigrant and farmworker community because I once had the same fear.” However, through CAPACES’ political education and gender justice trainings, she says, “I lost the fear, and I felt able to speak.”

Yadira has accepted to participate as our 6th Anniversary Master of Ceremonies. She views her role on stage as yet another step in her development as a leader. “I never imagined I would go from being a farmworker to being an M.C.” Yadira expresses gratitude toward all the non-profit organizations, including CAPACES, who have opened their doors, guided her, and helped her develop the talents she never knew she had.

The community needs more leaders like Yadira. CAPACES has the capacity to share informational resources to the community. From gender justice, to youth development, and political education, but we need financial support in developing these leaders that will represent our communities.

Can we count on your support to continue making this happen?

If you are unable to attend to hear Yadira speak at our 6th anniversary celebration on July 12th 2017 but would like to support CAPACES’ leadership programs please donate online today:

In solidarity,

Laura Isiordia and the team at CAPACES Leadership Institute

Formal Education Meets Popular Education: A Test Drive for CAPACES 101

Ever entered a lecture hall anticipating dialogue, a sharing of ideas, values and experience only to receive… well, a lecture? This form of education is common in many universities across the  country, which explains why this past April many OSU students were in for a surprise as they arrived in Woodburn to participate (or take a test drive) in CAPACES 101, one of the CAPACES Leadership Institute’s (CLI) popular education courses.

The partnership between the CLI and OSU’s Advanced Spanish Coordinated Studies Program led by Loren Chavarria included five Tuesday sessions in the CLI’s facility in Woodburn and volunteer opportunities with CLI’s youth program TURNO, Radio Movimiento, and FHDC to name a few.

Popular education, often described as education for critical consciousness, has Latin America traditions that often targeted low-income and marginalized communities. The concept: rather than have top-down teaching such as teacher-pupil, we have peer-to-peer teaching initiated by a facilitator. The premise: that no matter what occupation, income bracket, and level of formal education, everyone can participate and contribute by drawing upon their life experience or through engaging activities described as dinimicas. CAPACES 101, a five-session, ten hour course covers:

  • CAPACES 101 Introduction, which provides an overview of the CAPACES 101 format based on popular education, which utilizes a facilitator, who leads discussion, draws from the audience’s experiences.

  • Historias y Logros or our History and Struggle, which provides a brief description of the history of the movement, from PCUN’s (Oregon farmworker union) humble beginnings to the development of other organizations.

  • Valores e Ideas Claves del Movimiento or Values and Ideas of the Movement, which provides the key values and ideas of the CAPACES movement and identifying what they mean to us and their importance.

  • Los “Ismos” or the “Isms”, which aims to uncover our own prejudices and offer tools to analyze the different isms and phobias such as: racism, institutional racism, sexism (machismo), and homophobia.

  • Riquezas y Convenios Colectivos or Wealth and Collective Bargaining, which covers the concepts of wealth, who possesses it, and uncovering our own personal assumptions. The class also covers the importance of Collective Bargaining in relationship to the farmworker movement.

“This course and experience was all around wonderful. It met our program’s objectives of our five C’s (Communication, Cultures, Connections, Comparisons, and Communities) as well as the additional area of
Consciousness.” Said OSU faculty member Loren Chavarria

 “It was great for the CLI staff to be able to connect the formal education with the world of popular education. I think everyone had fun and learned a lot from one another.” Shared Executive Director Laura Isiordia.

A Tale of Two Paths: A Path to Education and a Path to Leadership

Two weeks ago, the CAPACES Leadership Institute hosted the  Tom Ruhl Scholarship Fund Gathering, a fundraising event for a Marylhurst University scholarship to benefit young Latino leaders who face barriers to higher education. Former Governor Barbara Roberts, a Marylhurst University grad, headlined the program, offering a reading of her book Up the Capitol Steps for the 100 plus people in attendance.

Dalila Ortiz, the CLI’s special projects coordinator, was announced as the first recipient of   the Tom Ruhl Scholarship. Here’s what she had to say:

“Thank you Marylhurst University! Because of you, students like me will have the opportunity to reach their dream of going to a university!” 
Dalila, who arrived to US when she was fourteen, became involved with FHDC’s Nuevo Amanacer’s after school program as a volunteer and later became a full time organizer, helping connect farmworker families to social services. Dalila will enroll at Marylhurst University in the fall of 2013 and  hopes to use her education  to give back to the community and the movement she calls home.
Following the event, Barbara Roberts spoke with several  youth leaders from the CLI’s TURNO program about her path to leadership, more specifically her Governorship.
“It was great to hear a women leader, who was governor, describe her hardships and how she overcame her challenges. She made me believe that my dreams mattered and that I too can be leader in my community, maybe even a Governor! My education and leadership development are my keys to that dream.”—Julizza Ramirez, 16