MEET DENISE 

An Experienced Leader the Community Trusts
 

History

Denise is a a first-generation Latina. Her parents migrated to United States from Mexicali, Baja California and Ojinaga, Chihuahua, Mexico.  They each made their way to Coachella, California seeking work, finding comfort in a deeply enriched Latino community, and marrying in 1977. Her father worked in CalDate and then went on to work at Coachella Valley Water District for 34 years.  Her mother worked in the cotton, watermelon, and grape fields and covered up to protect herself from the sun.  Today, she covers up to provide care to patients as a nurse. Denise was raised in Coachella and attended Peter Pendleton elementary school, Bobby Duke middle school, and Coachella Valley High School at Coachella Valley Unified School District.    

 

Journey

At the age of 20, Denise a single pregnant mother relocated from Coachella to Belcamp, Maryland achieving a better wage and advancement opportunities to provide for her soon to be born daughter, Abril. Her journey to Maryland came from a promotion to Corporate Manager that she received from the company she worked for, Saks Fifth Avenue (SFA).  Denise was employed by SFA at 19 years old and had done very well as the store’s inventory controller. She lived in Maryland for many years by herself and her daughter Abril would be in between both states, raised by her grandparents and Denise; this was not easy since it took a five- hour flight to get Abril to one another.  She worked long hours, at times on weekends, and daycare was expensive.  She would go on to work as an executive for other large retailers, such as Ace Hardware and Target. These challenges as a single mother would come to be her why: the motivation for giving back to the community. Today, she has the great privilege of going back to where it all began... working in a classroom with students as an educator at Coachella Valley Unified School District in a population largely made up English language learners and working-class families.

 

Education

Denise is the youngest of three sisters and the only sibling to graduate from college.  She attended Strayer University in Maryland- an online university uncommon in those times but, the most practical as a single working parent.  She graduated with a Bachelor’s in Economics.  The long work hours and missed critical moments in her daughter’s life caused her to reevaluate professions, one that would allow her to spend more time with Abril.  She went back to school to teach and earn a master’s degree in secondary education from Grand Canyon University.  However, her path to receive higher education, did not stop there.  Denise went on to be accepted and is attending USC graduate school of Public Policy in local government, working on her second master's degree.

 

Community 

There is no greater way of giving back to the community- than through volunteerism, by giving Coachella residents the resources and tools to acquire services, enriched programs, education, and information to improve their quality of life.  Denise Delgado has served in the City of Coachella as the:

  • Chairwoman- Planning Commissioner 

  • Chairwoman- Public Arts Commissioner 

  • Parks and Recreation Commissioner 

  • Chairwoman- library committee. 

  • President- Board of Directors of Friends of the Coachella Library

  • Vice President- Board of the Directors for Friends of the Desert Libraries (serving 8 libraries in the CV)

  • Board of Directors for Coachella Valley Volunteers in Medicine

Denise has had the wonderful opportunity of working with the community to provide literacy, art, and wellness programs that increase the quality of life in the city of Coachella.  Additionally, she understands that providing access to healthcare in Coachella is a critical need, which is why she is passionately involved with community outreach for volunteers in medicine.

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