Camila Chavez is Executive Director and co-founder (with her mother Dolores Huerta) of the Dolores Huerta Foundation (DHF). Her excellent leadership style has earned her the respect and admiration of her staff and colleagues. She is often referred to as “the best boss ever.” The ideals of non-violence, selfless motivation and personal responsibility were instilled in Camila by her parents Dolores Huerta and Richard Chávez and her Uncle Cesar E. Chavez. Camila was raised at the UFW Headquarters in La Paz located in Keene, California in Kern County.
As a student at Mills College in Oakland she served as a campaign coordinator for the campaign to save Affirmative Action in California. After graduating, Camila worked in public health promoting Medi-Cal, Healthy Families and other health coverage programs for low-income and undocumented families in San Francisco and Alameda Counties.
In 2003, Camila returned to the Central Valley to work with Dolores Huerta to establish the Dolores Huerta Foundation, headquartered in Bakersfield, California in Kern County. Under her leadership DHF and Vecinos UnidosⓇ (Neighbors United) have grown to twelve chapters in Fresno, Tulare, Kern and parts of the Antelope Valley. These communities have made gains in education equity and increased political representation. DHF has secured millions of dollars for neighborhood improvements. Using the “house meeting” organizing model, Vecinos UnidosⓇ (Neighbors United) chapters have expanded to twelve chapters and three DHF Youth chapters dedicated to organizing and working on campaigns to improve the quality of life in their communities. In 16 years since its inception, Camila has grown the organization to a budget of $5 million dollars with over 40 employees.
Camila currently resides in the mountains of Kern County in a cabin built by her father, where she, her spouse, their two children and a multitude of animals make every effort to live sustainably growing much of their own vegetarian food supply. Like her mother, she loves to dance, read and travel to places in the great outdoors.
She received the Humanitarian Award in 2019 from Community Action Partnership of Kern and sits on the following boards: Central Valley Partnership, Inner City Struggle, Planned Parenthood Advocates Mar Monte, and the CA Planned Parenthood Education Fund.