Meet our Team
The Office of Equity is made up of a small but mighty team of ive. We recognize that equity work is community work. Using guidance and best practices from our partners at the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE), the Office of Equity has recruited a team of Equity Ambassadors across County Departments to help us embed equity in our daily work. We are excited to have 23 out of 26 County Departments and Agencies participating in our racial equity Core Team.
Dora Estrada, Administrative Aide
Dora has supported the Office of Equity as an Administrative Aide since its inception, first on a part-time basis and then full-time starting in March 2021.
Before joining the Office of Equity Dora worked as a Program Specialist for the General Services Department in their Energy and Sustainability Division, as a Administrative Assistant at Sonoma Clean Power, and as a Public Relations Intern for University of the Pacific’s SUCCESS TRiO program, a federally funded program serving first generation low-income students.
Dora was born and raised in Sonoma Valley. She is the daughter of immigrants and a former foster youth. At a young age, she learned the importance of community engagement and activism. She is excited to be part of the important work that the Office of Equity will be tackling.
Most afternoons you can find Dora cruising on her bright blue bike, baking, or volunteering. Her tres leches cake is definitely a must try! Some of her favorite weekend activities include camping, hiking, and watching movies.
Melissa Valle, Program Manager
Melissa has been working for the Office of Equity since the fall of 2020 after being part of the County Communications and Government Affairs team since 2018.
In her role as a Communications and Engagement Coordinator, Melissa helped develop and implement additional Language Access practices for the County of Sonoma, particularly during emergencies, including the translation of all emergency communications to Spanish. She is grateful for the opportunity to work towards creating additional strategies to meaningfully address inequities in Sonoma County now in the Office of Equity.
Before joining the County, Melissa worked as a news reporter for Telemundo and Univision in the San Francisco Bay Area and California central coast.
Melissa graduated from New York University in 2013 with a double major in Sociology and Journalism. She completed a certificate program in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell University in 2021, and looks forward to continuing her education by pursuing a Master’s Degree in Industrial-Organizational Psychology at Harvard University.
In her free time, she enjoys baking and propagating more plants that she can actually have at home.
Alegría De La Cruz, Director
The Board of Supervisors appointed Alegría as the Director of the Office of Equity in August 2020. Prior to this appointment, Alegría served as a Chief Deputy in the County Counsel's Office.
Before joining the County of Sonoma, Alegría worked in public service and public interest for the State of California, the Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment, and at California Rural Legal Assistance.
Alegría identifies as Chicana and recognizes, embraces, and celebrates her responsibility to contribute meaningfully to public service, social justice, and equity. Alegría lives in Santa Rosa with her husband and two children, their chickens, and their dog. Alegría finds joy on early morning trail runs, at the beach with her family, and around a campfire in Sonoma County’s beautiful wild spaces.
Rubyd Olvera, Bilingual Community Engagement Analyst
Rubyd is a proud, unapologetic, DACAmented immigrant from Mexico who was raised in California.
In her previous role, she led community outreach for one of the largest rental assistance programs in the country to ensure residents stayed housed. She also led a resident leadership table with community members and leaders to build a bold permanent affordable housing solution. Additionally, she worked for Riverside County as a Housing Specialist where she assisted farm and service workers by replacing their substandard mobile homes with new ones.
As undergrad, Rubyd contributed to establishing the first UC wide Undocumented Student Coalition that helped unlock five million dollars for undocumented student resources, and was a research assistant for the Harvard UnDacmented Research Project.
Rubyd recognizes her privilege and responsibility to work with the community to advance equity and is excited to learn more from the community. In her free time, she enjoys being in nature.
Lindsay Franco, Equity & Social Justice Data Analyst
Before joining the County, Lindsay worked as a Diversity & Equity Specialist to understand, identify, and address gaps in services due to culture and language barriers for individuals with developmental disabilities in the North Bay area. Prior to that she was a Mental Health Wraparound Clinician and Permanency Worker in Sonoma County and provided individualized, trauma-informed, and culturally responsive services to children and families navigating their most challenging times.
Lindsay has lived, worked, and volunteered extensively internationally and served as a Community Health and HIV/AIDS Prevention and Behavior Change Volunteer with the Peace Corps in Namibia, Africa. She also worked as a Social Justice Arts Campaign Program Manager and Refugee Campaign Coordinator with Amnesty International in Adelaide, South Australia.
Lindsay is a lifelong learner, avid reader, and feels invigorated by the arts. She lives in Santa Rosa with her husband and their active toddler. She looks forward to working in this capacity and humanizing the data about our vibrant, strong, and ever-resilient community.