As a minister, evangelist, and missionary, Bettie is familiar with issues surrounding acceptance and understanding. She enjoys organizing and attending LMAC’s multicultural events and is especially happy about the increase in participation from Longmont residents over the last decade.
“Assisting in educating the people of Longmont about the diversity of the city will hopefully result in more understanding and, ultimately, unity,” she says. “For anyone thinking about joining LMAC, I say just do it!”
As the director of development for Intercambio Uniting Communities, a nonprofit providing cultural integration and language classes to Boulder County immigrants, Jenny brings experience with cultural diversity issues to LMAC. She enjoys working with community leaders to help make Longmont an inclusive city where everyone feels welcome and proud of their cultural heritage.
“I love raising the public’s awareness about who lives in Longmont and how different cultural groups can add to our community,” she says. “I’m excited to launch cultural training opportunities so that our community leaders can function as a unified team.”
Jenny, program specialist for Children, Youth & Families for the City of Longmont, joined LMAC in 2018. She is especially proud to contribute to LMAC’s Inclusive Communities event, which she believes is a beautiful example of what can happen when communities celebrate one another’s cultures and differences.
“If you are considering joining LMAC, reach out to one of the current or past members,” she says. “Being a new member myself, I can share how great my experience has been and tell you more about the opportunities I have had by joining this committee!”
Michal originally joined LMAC to represent the LGBTQ community but is excited to collaborate with others to model to the greater community how to honor a variety of diverse cultures and backgrounds.
“LMAC is important to Longmont,” Michal says, “because it sets an inclusive tone that celebrates our connections, similarities, and differences in a respectful manner. Representation matters. I encourage community leaders to ensure their culture is truly being represented within LMAC, and to come forward if it is not.”
As an LMAC member, Rose strives to help to make a difference in the lives of Longmont residents. “The purpose of LMAC,” she says, “is to let people know that all cultures are welcome in Longmont, and we do that by encouraging members of the community to be proud of who they are and share their cultural traditions with others. I enjoy being involved with a committee that helps educate and strengthen the community, and I’ve learned a lot about other cultures as well!”
As a pastor at Left Hand Church, Jennifer believes that helping people is her life’s mission. And as a member of LMAC, she continues her mission by raising awareness about the cultural diversity represented within the city of Longmont. She joined LMAC to learn more about her community and truly know her neighbors—especially in a time “where everyone feels so separated,” she says. “Our members each bring their own remarkable gifts, knowledge, and experiences to LMAC, and this gives us the beautiful opportunity to create a community we’re truly proud to live in.”
Yvette was motivated to join LMAC because of its mission to create a more inclusive and welcoming community in Longmont and because it allows her to serve in a role she finds meaningful. She appreciates the opportunity to actively work to build fellowship and inclusiveness within the city.
“If you’re interested in joining, I would encourage you to do so,” she says. “I think you'll find the experience rewarding, fun, and a great way to connect with others in the community.”
After meeting member Karen Roney at a City Council meeting, Rita decided to become an LMAC member herself so she could help bridge cultural gaps among the residents of Longmont. She appreciates the opportunity LMAC affords her to educate the community on accepting and supporting individuals across cultural backgrounds. “If you want to make a difference in your community, join LMAC!” she says.
Donna enjoys serving as a member of LMAC because it gives her the chance to celebrate diversity within her community. She has watched LMAC’s membership expand over the years and is delighted to see new faces each year.
“I love being able to share with other communities LMAC’s accomplishments,” she says. “If you’re considering joining, please don’t hesitate. It’s a great group to become involved in, one that I think you’ll find meaningful.”
Dr. Yaira Oquendo-Figueroa
Yaira brings her experience as a mental health provider to LMAC, where she seeks to represent and explore the intersections of gender, race/ethnicity, and educational attainment levels. “It is gratifying to interact and share resources to address the needs of the city of Longmont,” she says.
Yaira especially enjoys LMAC’s Inclusive Communities event, in which members of the community educate others about their cultural heritage through artistic performances, food, and arts and crafts.
Laurel is passionate about traveling because it gives him the opportunity to meet new people and experiencing different cultures, which made joining LMAC a natural fit. He appreciates LMAC’s efforts to create a better Longmont and encourages anyone who wants to learn about and advocate for acceptance to join LMAC. “Our door is always open,” he says. “Come and create the change you wish to see.”
As a member of the St. Vrain Valley School District’s Board of Education, Karen knows that education is a lifelong endeavor, and as a member of LMAC, she’s embraced the opportunity to learn more about other people and their cultures.
“I had no idea how many cultures were represented in our area,” she says. “It’s important that we keep the community open-minded, informed, cohesive, and culturally aware. Longmont truly feels like an inclusive community, and this is demonstrated in our schools, businesses, and community centers.”
Elvira joined LMAC because of its commitment to diversity and inclusivity in her hometown and brings her experience as the vice president of programs and inclusive leadership for Community Foundation Boulder County. She appreciates the opportunity to discuss critical issues and how the city of Longmont can make a positive impact on its community. And she is especially proud of the events LMAC holds throughout the year to broaden the city’s understanding of diversity and inclusivity. “Please join us,” she says. “You will find it worth your time and energy.”
As executive director of Visit Longmont, Nancy brings passion and enthusiasm for her city to LMAC. She has found her membership to be a great way to learn about and involve Visit Longmont in cultural events throughout the year and believes one of LMAC’s greatest strengths is its ability to promote events to under-funded organizations.
Glenda joined LMAC as an activist and to represent African Americans who live in Longmont and surrounding areas. She enjoys the chance to contribute to community projects and is especially proud of LMAC’s MLK Day events each year.
“Get involved in your community,” she says. “You can make a difference on many different levels.”
Karen helped coordinate the city of Longmont’s initial multicultural strategic planning effort in 2002. She had a lead role in establishing the Multicultural Plan Steering Committee, now LMAC, and is still here, many years later! She is especially proud of LMAC’s “Tamales and Talk” initiative, a project that contributed to the City of Longmont’s first All-America City designation in 2006.
Karen believes it is vitally important that all voices are valued, heard, and considered when serving residents in the community. “Joining LMAC is an amazing way to learn about the richness of Longmont,” she says. “I always learn something new about other cultures and how to be a better person.”
Sam’s desire to volunteer, serve, and give back to his community prompted him to join LMAC in 2005. He appreciates that LMAC allows him to connect with other individuals who enjoy making an impact on the city in which they live. Sam also believes that the events LMAC holds each year make Longmont a better place to call home.
“As human beings, we enjoy associating with others. LMAC makes it easier for those who live and work here to feel connected and like they belong,” he says. “As we serve others we feel better about ourselves and the community that we live in and love."