Our Mission

To empower Chicanas Latinas through personal, educational, and professional advancement.

Our History

In 1977, three Latina students at the University of California, Berkeley – Yolanda Ronquillo, Dr. Olga Terrazas, and Margaret Santos –saw first-hand the struggles facing Latinas in higher education, particularly those who were first generation college students. Recognizing that they needed to provide a system of support for these students, the women founded the Chicana Latina Foundation to support each other and future Latina college students.

From our inception, Chicana Latina Foundation offered scholarships to Latina students. In early years the founders and staff would sit around a kitchen table reviewing applications and building community with volunteers recruited from our families and friends. Soon, we realized the need to expand our circle of impact so we launched our community interview and review process, giving alumnae and Latinas an opportunity to reach back to the powerful women coming up along them.

In 2006, we integrated our annual Leadership Institute into the annual scholarship program in order to build community power and strengthen a network of connected, activated Latina leaders.

Since our beginnings we have awarded over one million dollars in scholarships to more than 700 Latina students, over 90% of whom were the first in their families to attend college.


Our Core Values

Building Community
Una planta sin raíces muere

At the heart of CLF’s work is community.  We are committed to centering the lives and experiences of people and communities who are too often pushed into the margins. Through active reciprocity (offering & receiving), intergenerational knowledge sharing, and civic engagement we amplify the inherent brilliance of our communities.   

Cultivating Leaders 
Lo que siembra se cosecha
Hay que sembrar para cosechar

CLF is dedicated to investing in and growing conscientious leaders who are rooted in social justice and service-based leadership.  By unapologetically centering our stories and lived experiences, we create transformative opportunities. The resulting transformations are personal and professional, cultivating  leaders who  strive to make long-term and sustainable change.

Equity in Education 
La educación no cambia el mundo, cambia las personas que van a cambiar el mundo. (Freire)
Education without us is not about us!

Eliminating barriers to education is a driving motivation for CLF.  Our commitment to providing holistic material, emotional, and spiritual support to students drives our commitment to widen the paths in, through, and beyond college.