Camilla Simon is the Director of HECHO. She is passionate about elevating the Latino voice in local, state and national conservation efforts, especially when it comes to accessing public lands. Since she joined HECHO in November 2014, Camilla has been working to develop an authentic Latino conservation agenda based on an increasingly engaged and organized grasstops and grassroots network.
As HECHO’s Director, Camilla was instrumental in co-founding the Latino Conservation Alliance, along with the Hispanic Access Foundation, to increase the visibility and strength of Latino organizations aligned to protect public lands. She also expanded HECHO’s presence in the west by developing HECHO programs in Arizona and Utah. At NALEO, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials annual conference, she highlighted the importance of conservation to the Latino community and wrote this high-profile op-ed during the Las Vegas gathering. To further raise the profile of on-the-ground conservation voices in the Latino community, Camilla established HECHO’s guest blog series inviting guests to write about their personal opinions and experiences about their connection to the outdoors.
One of Camilla’s organizational goals is to broaden the definition of a conservationist, and connect the dots between Latinos’ generational ties to the land with the public policies that impact access to the outdoors. She hopes to use her policy expertise to help create systemic change to protect natural resources for future generations.
Prior to joining HECHO, Camilla managed the distribution of over $20 million annually in conservation funds at a major foundation, aimed at increasing the capacity of local, regional, and national nonprofits. She also started the foundation’s first composting program to dramatically reduce landfill waste. She has also worked on a number of programs to connect children with nature.
Camilla graduated from Pacific University in Oregon with a degree in creative writing and literature; and then summa cum laude in environmental law and policy from Vermont Law School. She recently joined the board of the nonprofit Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards to help build a more diverse network of conservationists in this region. Camilla lives in Virginia with her husband, and is enjoying getting to know the outdoors on the East Coast after living most of her life in the west.
Elizabeth “Liz” Archuleta is HECHO’s Arizona Spokesperson. She is currently serving her fifth term on the Coconino County Board of Supervisors representing District Two. She is honored to be the first Latina elected to office in the history of Coconino County. Liz is a native of Flagstaff and fourth generation resident. Liz is involved with HECHO because she is committed to ensuring Hispanics have a voice in public lands and natural resource policy.
Liz served as President of the County Supervisors Association, representing the 15 counties in the State of Arizona. She established the Coconino Plateau Water Advisory Council and has served as Chair for several years. Liz also served on the Governor’s Arizona Statewide Water Advisory Council.
Liz's experience and the relationships she has developed in the area of public lands and natural resources is invaluable to HECHO. Liz has been instrumental in shaping public lands policy on the national level. As the Chairwoman of the National Association of Counties Public Lands Steering Committee (2007-2009), she led the successful reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act (SRS) and full funding of Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) for all counties.
One of the most challenging periods of Liz’s service has been the past few years dealing with the greatest disaster in the history of Coconino County – the Schultz Fire and Floods, which severely impacted her district. Liz was very successful in securing millions of dollars in funding to mitigate the flooding and the work she has done is recognized nationally as a model.
Liz has received many awards including the Athena Award recognizing her achievements as the most outstanding woman in Flagstaff and the statewide Valle del Sol Exemplary Leadership Award. During Arizona’s Centennial, Liz was recognized as one of Arizona’s Latina Trailblazers.
Liz lives with her husband and son in Flagstaff.