Candi Lee CdeBaca
Candi is a policy expert, social worker, community organizer, and the co-founder of Project VOYCE, Cross Community Coalition, and Tierra Colectiva/GES Land Trust. She is a proud fifth-generation native of northeast Denver and is the first LGBTQ Latina and first Democratic Socialist to serve on the Denver City Council. As an elected official, Candi successfully led the charge to divest from halfway houses run by private prison companies, co-sponsored the Eviction Defense Right to Counsel ordinance, and co-sponsored a charter amendment to bring balance between the branches of government when it comes to mayoral appointments. She has sparked many of Denver's most exciting ideas from re-imagining policing, making the independent monitor truly independent, investing in cooperatives for a new economy, investing in historic businesses through a legacy business fund, participatory budgeting, modernizing the city's community engagement and customer service practices, reforming neighborhood organizations to foster equity, campaign finance reform, and anti-displacement efforts. In 2020, Candi began convening a Food Desert Solutions stakeholder group that has since developed into the East Denver Food Sovereignty Initiative, and it is launching the first community-owned and sourced co-op grocery store in District 9. Candi has continued to be a fierce advocate for housing as a human right, food as a utility, environmental justice, and preservation/stabilization of Denver’s Black and Brown communities. Looking forward, she will continue to center the margins of society, and infuse city government with policy expertise, a lens for justice, and ancestral wisdom.