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Gabriel Garcia

Policy & Advocacy Director | (916) 690-4264

Youth Alive!’s Policy & Advocacy Director Gabriel Garcia loves introducing people to their own power. Gabe’s job, and his passion, is giving those affected by violence, clients from our prevention and intervention programs, a ringing voice in the quest for peace. At Youth ALIVE!, we try to help victims heal and stay safe. But we also seek to change systems that allow violence and inequality to proliferate. We know that the people best positioned to envision a better, safer, fairer future are those who have been most impacted by violence and by a system that creates barriers to healing. Gabe grew up in a close-knit extended family in South Sacramento, a part of our Capital city that has long struggled with poverty and violence. With encouragement from his parents and teachers, he excelled in school early on, graduated from UC Davis, and eventually went to work for the Washington, D.C.-based Southeast Asia Resource Action Center, as coordinator of their efforts to advocate for often-misunderstood boys and men of color. Now, at City Hall, or blazing a trail between Oakland and Sacramento, he represents the voice of those afflicted by violence. Gabe also heads Youth ALIVE!’s speakers bureau, Speak Up, Speak Out, through which he teaches youth and adults to use their voices to create change. Many find it a healing experience. Gabe has had a real impact on some of our Teens on Target youth leaders, whom he has watched grow into more confident and effective public advocates, even as they are still in high school. He loves the policy side of his work, but his real inspiration comes in helping others deploy their own persuasive power. “My favorite thing,” says Gabe, “is to give community members and young people tools to become champions of their own communities.”

Headshot of Policy & Advocacy Director Gabriel Garcia