San Francisco–Equality California announced today that it has hired Rick Rivas as its San Francisco-based program manager. Rivas will be responsible for maintaining an on-the-ground presence in San Francisco as well as maintaining and broadening engagement with the Bay Area LGBTQ community, elected officials and partner organizations. His hire is part of the restructuring initiated two years ago of the organization’s mission and staff and fulfills a longterm priority of reestablishing a senior staff presence in the Bay Area.
“Rick is a stellar addition to our staff and will reestablish our ability to advance LGBTQ equality and social justice in the Bay Area,” said Rick Zbur, executive director of Equality California. “Rick’s extensive experience and relationships with leaders in government and partner organizations will enable us to broaden our reach and impact in Northern California as we expand our programs to improve the lives of LGBT people.”
Growing up in the rural California community of Hollister, Rivas was inspired to pursue a career in social activism, politics and public service growing by his grandfather, who was active in the United Farm Workers Union. Since 2002, he has helped dozens of Democratic candidates across California raise money and run strong grassroots campaigns, and has himself run dozens of local and state legislative races. He also served as legislative aide and communications director to Assemblymember Anna Caballero, directing her campaigns in 2006 and again in 2016. He also served as chief consultant for Measure A, a successful $90 million school bond measure in the City of Salinas and the largest bond measure in the history of the Alisal Unified School District. He served as a member of Equality California’s board of directors from 2010 to 2017.
Rivas holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Santa Clara University as well as a master’s degree in public policy from the University of Michigan’s Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.