Eleazer Reyna Ocampo – President
Elea is originally from Veracruz, Mexico, and moved to Siler City when she was 7 years old. As a teenager, she participated in The Hispanic Liaison’s Youth group and youth radio show called “Teen Shout”. She graduated from Jordan Matthews High School and earned a degree in Environmental Engineering from NC State University. She is currently a small business owner in the Triad region. Previously, she worked as a Water Quality Specialist for the City of Greensboro. Elea is fully bilingual, and in her free time, she is a pottery maker and enjoys playing her native “Son Jarocho” music of Veracruz. She currently lives in Greensboro and owns property in Chatham County.
Judith Montenegro – Vice President
Judith is originally from Durango, Mexico, and moved to the U.S. at a very young age. She is the Program Director for Latinos in the South with the Latino Commission on AIDS. Judith graduated from UNC Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Sociology. She has devoted her career to improving the quality and access to health care for Latinxs and immigrants. Judith lives in Chatham County.
Elizabeth Haddix – Treasurer
Elizabeth is a bilingual resident of Pittsboro. She is the Regional Managing Director for the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law. Previoulsy, she served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at UNC-Chapel Hill and was on the staff of the UNC Center for Civil Rights. After graduating from Duke University in 1992, Elizabeth taught Spanish at Southwest Edgecombe High School. In 1998, she earned a J.D. from UNC School of Law and received a fellowship from the National Association for Public Interest Law, which she used to represent low-income workers as a staff attorney at the North Carolina Justice Center. She entered private practice with the firm of Edelstein & Payne in Raleigh.
Helen Mikul – Secretary
Helen has lived in Chatham County in 2009 and is happy to call Chatham “home”. She has worked as a certified nurse midwife at the Siler City Community Health Center since 2008. From 1998 to 2003, Helen provided midwifery care at the freestanding birth center in Chapel Hill of Piedmont Health Services. Previously, she worked in the midwifery department of Duke University Medical Center. Helen is fluent in Spanish, most of her patients at SCHC are Spanish speaking. She lived in Jalisco and Oaxaca in 1967 and 1972, then attended high school in Port Isabel, Texas, near Matamoros. Her high school experience served as an immersion program in Spanish. Helen has been a volunteer with the Hispanic Liaison and is honored to join as a board member. She looks forward to helping with the organization grow. Helen has 3 adult children and 4 grandchildren, who are the light of her life. She lives on 10 acres with 3 dogs, 4 cats, 11 goats and 25 chickens.
Will is originally from US and is proficient in Spanish. He is the Training Director for the Dispute Settlement Center in Orange County. Will has 18 years’ experience in conflict resolution and has trained thousands of people in NC in mediation, conflict resolution, de-escalation, and meeting facilitation. In his role, he designs curriculum for clients in government, business, universities, and community organizations. Will believes that conflict resolution skills help groups work together more efficiently, lead to better outcomes, and result in happier people. Will lives in Pittsboro with his two sons, Levi and Wyatt, and their amazing dog, Maya.
Susan is a first-generation American citizen of El Salvadoran heritage. She was born and raised in Queens, NY, and is fully bilingual. She was the first person in her family to graduate from high school and is thankful for her parents’ persistence in teaching her native language. Being fluent in Spanish was key to many opportunities in her life. Susan moved to Sanford in 1999 after marrying her husband, Gus Gomez. She earned a degree in Psychology from UNC-Greensboro. Since 2022, Susan has served as the Sanford Area Growth Alliance’s (SAGA) Chamber of Commerce Director. Previously, she served as the Business Manager for St. Stephen Catholic Church, and had a 19-year career in Human Resources with American Moulding & Millwork, Tyson Foods, Caterpillar, and Noble Oil. She is a member of the Central Carolina Society for Human Resources (CCSHRM) and a Board member of the United Way of Lee County. She lives in Sanford with her husband and their two daughters, Julianne and Jocelyn.
Leslie is a native of Florida of Guatemalan heritage who grew up in Siler City. She earned a BS in both Psychology and Nursing with a minor in Latina/o Studies from UNC Chapel Hill. Leslie currently works as a registered nurse at Duke University Hospital’s General Surgery and Trauma Stepdown Unit, where she has been since 2018. Leslie is also pursuing a doctoral degree to become a family nurse practitioner. In her free time, she loves to watch movies and spend time with her small children Sebastian and Santiago.
Rebecca is a proud non-binary Latinx person who is a native of Florida. They’re the child of Mexican parents from Acapulco and have lived in Siler City most of their life. Rebecca is the first Orgullo Latinx Pride alum to join our board, they were in the program for 2 years prior to graduating from Jordan Matthews High School in 2023. Rebecca is attending CCCC as a C-STEP student and Dell Scholar. They currently work at The Chatham Rabbit as barista. On their free time, they enjoy reading, going to concerts, and studying Japanese.
Casandra Juarez Rodriguez
Casandra is originally from Monterrey, Mexico. She moved to Sanford at a young age with her family. She earned an undergraduate degree at UNC-Wilmington and a graduate degree at UNC-Chapel Hill in Social Work. She’s a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and serves as the district wide English Language social worker for Lee County Schools. Casandra is passionate about working with the Spanish-speaking community and removing barriers for families and students in the school system. She was instrumental in the creation of the first Newcomer Support Groups at Lee County and Southern Lee high schools. Casandra is excited to join the Hispanic Liaison’s board and help even more Latinx families in Lee County.