Executive Director

Sulma Arias

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At a time when democracy itself is under threat, Sulma is the right leader to bring the power of organizing to empower the future of all people seeking a hand in their own destiny.

Sulma Arias brings over 20 years of organizing experience to her role as Executive Director for People’s Action Institute and People’s Action. Sulma’s organizing work spans many issues, including immigrant rights, voting rights, and economic justice, and her practice has always centered directly impacted people to build power. Sulma has worked closely with local and national organizations to build and advance strategic campaigns that build power.  Sulma also has extensive experience training organizers and growing organizing capacity and building strong community-led organizations across the country. 

Sulma immigrated to Kansas from El Salvador at the age of 12  and ultimately went on to lead Sunflower Community Action, where she worked on training organizers and building a base of volunteers to fight for driver’s licenses and tuition access for immigrants and fighting harmful policies during the Kobach era. Sulma worked for (National) People’s Action on national campaigns and strengthening community organizing and also led the Fair Immigration Reform Movement in the fight for immigration reform and against the harmful policies coming out of the Trump administration for years. Sulma took over as Executive Director of People’s Action in 2022 and is leading the charge to build a nationwide Organizing Revival to rebuild and reinvigorate the field of organizing to build community power across the country. 

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