Margaret Flores McCabe, Executive Director
Just three years ago, Margaret Flores McCabe was hired as Executive of VIDAS. When she started, the organization had 4 employees, one location and a 150K budget. Today, the organization has 14 employees, 5 locations and a $1M budget. Under Margaret’s leadership, VIDAS earned recognition by USCIS and is now approved to secure contracts with the California Department of Social Services. Margaret has grown VIDAS through innovative partnerships with other nonprofits and has expanded geographically through partnerships with two community colleges.
In 2019, Margaret (with her team) wrote the Secure Families Collaborative proposal to the Sonoma County. VIDAS and Catholic Charities were both selected to lead the Collaborative in 2019. The Collaborative is a unique service model that now includes legal services, mental health services and wraparound social services to undocumented immigrants in Sonoma County.
In 2020, Margaret was appointed Director of the Sonoma Secure Families Collaborative and VIDAS is now sole program and fiscal lead of this Collaborative.
Prior to joining VIDAS, Margaret worked 20 years as a successful business owner and real estate investor. She has a B.A. in Political Science from U.C. Davis and a M.ed from San Jose State University.
Maria Elena Valle, Executive Assistant
Maria Elena Valle was initially brought into VIDAS as a volunteer, while working towards her CPR certification at Contra Costa Community College. Having realized the importance and need of immigrant advocacy, she chose to drop from her school program and refocus and invest full-time in the organization.
Since joining the organization in 2016, she has taken various positions to maximize support for her legal teams. While working as a front-desk administrative assistant, she has learned a multitude of skills including, but not limited to, bookkeeping, outreaching, graphics design, and activism and advocacy work.
In 2018, she was promoted to Executive Assistant and tasked with support in overseeing all VIDAS locations. Working directly under the Executive Director, she handles all administrative tasks such as grant management, communicating between staff and partners, implementing office procedures, etc. She also serves as a support role for the Executive Director in managing the Sonoma Secure Families Collaborative.
She is currently enrolled in the Paralegal Studies program at the Santa Rosa Junior College and aims to assist in the legal field. In her spare time, Maria Elena enjoys taking her dogs on a walk and drawing.
Chandler Jordana, Associate Director
Chandler is graduate of the University of Utah’s Master of Science in International Affairs and Global Enterprise Program. Chandler enjoys writing, poetry, comedy and learning about different cultures and languages.
Chandler is the VIDAS Associate Director and the Associate Director of the Sonoma Secure Families Collaborative. Chandler’s work mainly entails administrative tasks. Chandler write grants, reports, and ensure that our staff and partners are complying with the terms of our grants and contracts.
Marina del Carmen Ordoñez, Director of Operations (Vallejo) and Accredited Representative
Office: Vallejo and Napa, CA
Marina’s passion for human rights began at a young age while growing up in El Salvador. She and her daughter came to this country as refugees and were granted political asylum and the opportunity to stay here.
In 2013 a group of passionate people and Marina founded VIDAS to provide services to all immigrants and advocate for a just immigration reform that would focus on family reunification. As the Director of Operations at the Vallejo Office and Accredited Representative, Marina provides legal services, oversight to our management systems, promoting efficiency, access, and effectiveness of flow and processes. She became the first Accredited Representative at VIDAS and has a background in grass root organizing, outreach and advocating for immigrants’ rights. She was instrumental in opening the VIDAS offices in Vallejo and Napa Valley College. She is a liaison with community organizations, service organizations, and other public and private agencies in the community.
Marina has a Master of Divinity degree from the San Francisco Theological Seminary and over 18 years of experience in health care administration, management, and program development.
Mabel Avila Peña, Director of Operations (B Street) and Accredited Representative
Office: B Street, Santa Rosa, CA
Prior to coming to the USA, Mabel was a lawyer in her native country, where she graduated in Law in 1998 at the University of Havana.
During her last semester at college, Mabel Avila Peña interned with VIDAS. Immediately after her graduation with the Highest Honors in Santa Roja Junior College, she was hired as a paralegal for our agency. Mabel is originally from Cuba. At one point in her life, she was herself an immigrant seeking asylum in this amazing country. Her own experience sparked in her a deep passion to help the immigrant community in the area. Even though she works daily processing diverse cases of immigration matters, her greatest inclination is toward the Removal Defense issues. Being bilingual and able to communicate with clients in their native tongue is an addition to our services.
A year after working with us, Mabel was accredited by the Office of Legal Access Programs, becoming an Accredited Representative. Her performance at the agency granted her the position of Director of Operation at the B Street, Santa Rosa. In the achievement of her duties, she is always eager to keep a harmonious balance and maintain a joyful, and efficient workplace.
Barbara Ibarra, Director of Operations (Dream Center) and Legal Assistant
Office: Dream Center, Santa Rosa, CA
Barbara was born in Santa Paula, CA to immigrant parents. She was raised in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico from the age of one year old to the age of 11. She has been living in Sonoma County from 1985 to the present. She graduated from Sonoma State University in May 1999. In 2001, she began working in the area of immigration law. She is bilingual in Spanish and English.
She joined VIDAS in April of 2019 as legal assistant and in the Spring of 2020 become Director of Operations at the Dream Center office at the Santa Rosa Junior College.