Director of Operations
Professional Experience: Denise is the proud daughter of immigrant parents who with their hard work and cultural values, shaped her passion towards community involvement. Denise credits all her success and achievements to her parents and hopes to continue to honor their sacrifice and support. She was born in Las Cruces, New Mexico, and was raised in Thornton, Colorado.
Denise holds a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs, and also earned a Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Northern Colorado. As a first-generation, Latinx student, Denise focused her research on the academic success among Latinx students in STEM. Her work led to a profound interest in working with her community in issues related to diversity, equity, and inclusiveness among systems that are not created with POC in mind. Her educational career helped shape her knowledge and led her to Cultivando in 2018.
Why did I choose to work at Cultivando: I was highly impacted by my experience at the University of Northern Colorado. I struggled to fit in among my peers in a system that was not created with my success in mind. From my experiences and cultural upbringing, I knew how important it was for me to give back to the community who guided me and be a resource to those who shared a similar background. After graduating, I was fortunate to find my way to Cultivando, who like me share the same values in community. I often put myself in my parents’ shoes and acknowledge how difficult it was for them to raise four children in a foreign country with limited resources and opportunities. Every day I am reminded of my cultural roots and working with Cultivando I am impacted by the stories and resiliency of our community.
Hidden Talent: A hidden talent that I never share with anyone is my ability to play the Saxophone. I have been playing for many years, and I only play in private. I get very shy to play in front of others.
What I like to do when I am not working: I love to travel! If I could spend my whole life traveling that is what I would do. I have spent the majority of my 20s traveling and crossing countries off my bucket list. As a new mom, I hope to enlist that sense of adventure to my little one. I am also an avid reader. I always have a book with me and truly enjoy the power of literature.