José Luis Zárate García, Executive Director: is from Oaxaca, Mexico and holds a Bachelor degree in Agricultural Engineering, a minor in Agricultural Mechanics, as well as diplomas in agroecology, photography, and documentary filmmaking. Over his thirty-year career, he has developed expertise in a variety of participatory development methodologies, including needs assessment and problem solving, strategic planning, project management, risk management, and contingency planning.
He is a workshop facilitator, panelist, and conference participant in development events around the world. José Luis is passionate about photography and documentary filmmaking, both of which serve as mediums that allow him to share with the world the reality of life for rural and marginal urban communities.
Marco Tulio Jiménez Arellanes, Program Coordinator: Graduated in 2015 from Universidad Tecnológica de la Mixteca with a degree in Design Engineering. As Program Coordinator, he evaluates and monitors LPP's programs, in order to mesure their impact in the participating communities, through direct contact with Regional Coordinators, librarians and users of libraries. After fulfilling his social service with LPP, his interest in the social and cultural development of the communities led him to commit and be part of the team. His inspiration comes from seeing how people from different communities unite voluntarily to promote the magic of reading and reach more and more people in his home state of Oaxaca.
Daniela Cruz Cruz, Administrative Assistant: A native of Oaxaca. Dani graduated with a degree in Cultural Management and Sustainable Development from the Universidad Autónoma Benito Juárez. She started her career as a social service resident with Libros Para Pueblos. She currently holds the position of administrative assistant, runs the Mobile Library project at Llano Park and is a workshop facilitator and volunteer reader with groups of pre school age children.
Regional Volunteer Coordinators
The network of Regional Volunteer Coordinators are previous or current Mexican librarians who offer their expertise in reading promotion through planning, creating and implementing workshops, and providing advice one‐on‐one to the librarians, as part of our Librarian Development Program. Each Regional Coordinator has an area in the state for which he or she is responsible.
Cristiam Omar Santos is a Regional Coordinator for Libros para Pueblos in the Nochixtlán region. An elementary school teacher and principal for 11 years, he is certified as a professional reading mediator and won a national award in 2012 for promoting reading. Cristiam has a masters degree in Cultural Arts Education and Management from the Organization of Ibero‐American States (OEI). Cristiam oversees the library in Santa Inés Zaragoza and with Don Northey , piloted the LPP's tablet project.
Gamaliel Flores Esquivel, originally from Huajuapan de León, when he was a child he used to visit the municipal library "Mtro. Rafael Ramírez Castañeda" and participate in its reading promotion workshops. Unknowingly, he began a "reading" journey by the hand of Beatriz Sánchez Ramírez (Betty), who at that time was the director of the library and years later would become the first Regional Coordinator of LPP. Gamaliel grew up and moved to the city of Oaxaca to study a degree in Language Teaching, when he finished he returned to Huajuapan and on a visit to the library he met Betty again after many years. In 2014, Betty founded the library "Club Chaa Lulu" and Gamaliel was integrated, first as instructor of summer workshops and later as administrator the library. After Betty's death in April 2017, Gamaliel, along with other collaborators, took the responsibility of keep operating the library they helped to build and agreed to continue with Betty's work as Regional Coordinator in the Huajuapan area.
Guadalupe Santiago is a woman who has dedicated her life to her family for 16 years. Her greatest achievement has been seeing grow and be part of the lives of her three children. She has been happy to be part of her husband's (Cristiam) passionate and crazy projects. In every step she gives, they are always present those she loves. About 7 years ago she met with reading, this encounter led her to initiate reading promotion projects. She is a primary school teacher, in 2014 together with her students, who put their greatest effort and dedication, they won the "Olimpiada Nacional de la Lectura", a reading national award in Mexico. In addition of being a librarian for Libros Para Pueblos, she also participates of the National Program "Salas de Lectura".
She believes that people are basically defined by three things: what they eat, what they read and what they dream about.
So, in essence, Guadalupe is a rich and delicious "mole de olla"; is Flip in search of his mother, is a poem by Neruda or Dustfinger who struggles to return to the side of who is his great love, she is the dream of inspiring lives through reading. She became Coordinator for the Oaxacan Valle on 2017.
Graciela Ivette Cruz Alavés, Native of Santa Catarina Juquila, she began her work at the "Rosario Castellanos" Municipal Library in January 2017. Previously, she worked as a substitute teacher with children in pre-school and primary education. Since she started working in the library she has been fascinated by the wonderful work of reading promotion. She thinks that a book is a magic window into unknown worlds, so she puts all her efforts and enthusiasm to bring the children of Juquila to this experience and lead them to know new worlds. Currently she is Regional Coordinator in the Coast, attending to the libraries of the district of Juquila.
José Eleazar López Castillejos, Native of Tapachula, Chiapas, studied Agricultural Engineering; Since 2010 he is responsible for one of the libraries supported by LPP, which is located within the Instituto de Estudios de Bachillerato del Estado de Oaxaca (IEBO) Plantel 17, where he also is the principal, located in the community of San Pedro el Alto, Zimatlán. He has received training in the promotion of reading and is a volunteer reader for the "Seguimos Leyendo" program of the Alfredo Harp Helú Foundation. According to his own words, "this experience has served me to interact with children and young people, entering together the great world of the imagination that breaks all barriers". In 2016 he joined as Regional Coordinator and uses his training to develop projects in the libraries under his charge, which integrate the use of reading and mathematics.
José Ramirez Mora has worked as a teacher at the primary level for 30 years in Oaxaca state. He began his career in the Sierra Sur of Oaxaca, in the district of Miahuatlán. In 1996 he became principal of the primary school in Colonia Zapoteca located in his hometown of Zaachila. In 2001 he met Tom Dunham and Jim Breedlove and together they established the library "El Mundo del Saber" in his school. This is one of the first libraries established by Libros para Pueblos. In 2015 he joined as a Regional Coordinator for the Oaxacan Valley.
Karina Orozco García has been Regional Coordinator with LPP since 2012. Born in the city of Huamantla, Tlaxcala, her love for children led her to work in educational services with the National Puppet Museum where she worked in the area of Educational Services. She later worked in EDUSAT (Educational Television System) and on the educational program, Sesame Street (Mexico). Karina now serves as the Library Coordinator in the government administration of San Pedro y San Pablo Teposcolula in the Mixteca.
Norma Emma Calvo Ruiz, Native of Mexico City, for 10 years has been responsible for the Municipal Public Library "Ramón López Velarde" in the community of Bajos de Chila. In 2010, this library was integrated into the LPP network and since then, Norma has participated in training workshops and has been involved in the work of promoting reading. Starting in 2017, she became the Regional Coordinator for the Coast Libraries.
Ramiro Flores Ambrocio, He worked as a primary school teacher for 32 years. In 2007 he had the first contact with Libros para Pueblos where he met Enid Lynn and Jim Breedlove. After this encounter the idea arose of establishing a library in the primary school "Jose Maria Morelos", located in San Lucas Tlanichico, where Ramiro was the principal. From then until 2016, he was responsible for the library "Yuu Naan" (House of knowledge in Zapotec).
Ramiro thinks that reading is a pleasure, it is a habit that leads people to fly through their imagination, but also is convinced that it is a tool that serves to develop skills, to delve into the culture and history, and ultimately, hopes that it will help people in rural communities understand and defend their rights. At the end of his academic career, in early 2017, he decided to join Libros para Pueblos as Regional Coordinator in the Central Valleys.
Tere Hernández is Regional Coordinator for Libros para Pueblos in the Tlaxiaco region. Born in Tlaxiaco, she studied industrial engineering at the Technological Institute of Tlaxiaco and holds a degree in Cultural Management and Sustainable Development from UABJO (Universidad Autónoma Benito Juárez de Oaxaca). She was an intern in the program "Poder Joven Radio" and she joined the first committee of the Radio Production Center at the Technological Institute of Tlaxiaco. She served as director of the House of Culture from 2008 to 2012 and as director of strategic projects in 2013. She is the President of the civil association, Mujer es Fuerza y Labor A.C., and works with youth musicians in Tlaxiaco.
Yanina Vázquez works as Regional Coordinator for Libros para Pueblos in the Sierra Mixe region. She studied acting at the University of Veracruz, and worked as an actress and dancer with Salvador Lemis, Laura Moss, Debbie Saivetz and with the group "Asalto Diario". Since 1988 she has devoted herself to theater for children as an actress and puppeteer. In 2015 she founded the group "Carapacho Teatro," and is also a storyteller, producer and host of the children’s radio show "La boca del dinosaurio".
Betty Sánchez Ramírez (1953 - 2017) was a native and resident of Huajuapan de León, Oaxaca and LPP's first Regional Coordinator. In 1983 she became librarian, working in the Public Library "Mtro. Rafael Ramirez Castaneda" in her hometown. With Libros para Pueblos, she found the opportunity to continue her passion for reading. She will be forever missed by her colleagues and friends.