Esperanza Vielma is a dedicated advocate for sending students from San Joaquin Valley to the No.1 public university in the world—UC Berkeley. Her Cal alumni loyalties led her to serve as Scholarship Chair for the Cal Club of San Joaquin County and as Secretary of the UC Berkeley Chicano Latino Alumni Association.
Esperanza is the founder of Mujeres Educadas Transformando la Academia y la Sociedad (METAS), an intensive college prep program that prepares first-generation Latinas to go on to four-year public universities, and has motivated many high school students to pursue their higher education at UC Berkeley. A Woodrow Wilson Public Policy International Affairs Fellow Cohort in 1990, she worked to pave the way for others in the San Joaquin Valley by co-founding the first H20 Hackathon for youth as well as Cafe Coop, the first nonprofit cooperative for startup companies, entrepreneurs, freelancers, and artists in San Joaquin County. Esperanza represents entrepreneurs on the board of the state-approved iHub San Joaquin.
In addition to her academic activism, she is an active voice for the environmental justice community in the Valley. She serves as chair of the Environmental Justice Advisory Group for the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District and as a board member on the Environmental Justice Coalition for Water. Over the last two years, she toured the state as an ambassador for the grassroots organization Restore the Delta and was selected to be part of the Delta Leadership Program’s inaugural Class of 2016 by the State of California’s Delta Protection Commission.