Our Staff

Professional Staff

Dora S. Frias

Director

Dora S. Frias (she/her/ella) is currently the Director of El Centro at Colorado State University (CSU). Previously, Dora served as the Director of the Pride Resource Center at CSU and the Program Director of Latinx Student Services at the University of Colorado Denver. Dora was born in Durango, Mexico and grew up El Paso, TX.  She earned her B.S. from Texas A&M University and her M.S. at Colorado State University in Student Affairs in Higher Education. Dora has worked as a physical and health educator in the K-12 educational system and has spent the last 10 years working in Student Affairs and Higher Education, specializing in social justice education and advocating for underrepresented students on a variety of campuses across the country. She has served on leadership boards for several local and national organizations including Colorado Coalition for the Educational Advancement of Latinx (CoCEAL), and the ACPA Latinx Network. Dora has been a Co-Lead facilitator for the LeaderShape Institute, is a graduate of the Social Justice Training Institute and has been featured on a Higher Ed Live episode titled “LGBTQ + Latinx Issues in Student Affairs.” Through her work with students she hopes to create a community that fosters mutual respect, justice and equality for all. Outside of all that, she enjoys cooking, listening to podcasts, and spending time with her wife, their kiddo and family.

Michelle Cadena

Assistant Director

Hola El Centro y CSU! Mi nombre es Michelle Cadena (she/her/ella) and I am very excited to be joining you soon as Assistant Director! A little bit about myself: I am from Tijuana, Baja California and San Diego, California (this year marks half my life in both cities and countries). I was a transborder community college student before transferring to a four year university. These lived experiences combined with my work and my education have shaped the passion I have for higher education, specifically around identity development and advocacy. My passion and drive derives from the powerful women in my life who have raised me and shared many life lessons with me. What you will soon learn about me is that I love laughing and singing when I’m working. It is also likely that my office will smell like coffee all the time, since I love it, and yes, I do have my own little coffee maker that I carry with me everywhere I go. I love trying new food and getting recommendations for places to eat, so please feel free to share the spots you love since this is my first time living in Colorado and really living outside of California! I enjoy music and podcasts, especially when I commute to and from work or when I’m cleaning and cooking (I find comfort in this ritual since it reminds me of home). I am also an artist; I mainly use acrylic and mixed media, but I also work with oils and pastels. For me, it is a way of practicing self-care, which helps me ground myself when I feel stressed or anxious. I love infusing it into the work I do, so I hope I can share that part of me with all of you too! I am looking forward to meeting you soon and continue learning and growing, as well as, sharing more about myself in this new journey of my life!Hola El Centro y CSU! Mi nombre es Michelle Cadena (she/her/ella) and I am very excited to be joining you soon as Assistant Director! A little bit about myself: I am from Tijuana, Baja California and San Diego, California (this year marks half my life in both cities and countries). I was a transborder community college student before transferring to a four year university. These lived experiences combined with my work and my education have shaped the passion I have for higher education, specifically around identity development and advocacy. My passion and drive derives from the powerful women in my life who have raised me and shared many life lessons with me. What you will soon learn about me is that I love laughing and singing when I’m working. It is also likely that my office will smell like coffee all the time, since I love it, and yes, I do have my own little coffee maker that I carry with me everywhere I go. I love trying new food and getting recommendations for places to eat, so please feel free to share the spots you love since this is my first time living in Colorado and really living outside of California! I enjoy music and podcasts, especially when I commute to and from work or when I’m cleaning and cooking (I find comfort in this ritual since it reminds me of home). I am also an artist; I mainly use acrylic and mixed media, but I also work with oils and pastels. For me, it is a way of practicing self-care, which helps me ground myself when I feel stressed or anxious. I love infusing it into the work I do, so I hope I can share that part of me with all of you too! I am looking forward to meeting you soon and continue learning and growing, as well as, sharing more about myself in this new journey of my life!

Student Staff

Roman Ceja

Office Coordinator

Leo Alvear Carbajal

Office Coordinator

Cristal Dominguez Vasquez

Transfer Coordinator

Valarie Lopez

Marketing Coordinator

Karen Sandoval

La Conexión Family Leader

Bradlee Saavedra

La Conexión Family Leader