Luis Olmedo Velez: Advocating for his community

Luis Olmedo Velez is pictured in front of the office of Comite Civico Del Valle.

Luis Olmedo Velez knows what it is to feel disenfranchised.

Born in Mexicali, the son of a farmworker, his family moved to the Imperial Valley in the ’70s when he was a young boy and lived in tiny farmworker housing with outdoor communal showers. His family—poor but proud.

Life brought challenges. In Mexicali he thrived in school. Once living in the Valley, he had to start over. Learn English. Adapt to a new school. New culture. It would take time but eventually he would find his path and his voice.

Today, he draws from his past as he serves as executive director of the community-based organization, Comite Civico Del Valle, a nonprofit advocacy organization founded by his father, Jose Velez, in 1987. Through Comite Civico, he is giving voice to the disenfranchised on critical issues impacting their

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