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Welcoming new board members series: Meet Alma

Social distancing since 2020 has some of us feeling a little disconnected. Let us help you feel a bit more acquainted with the leaders of our community – the AVANCE-Austin board of directors. Meet one of our newest recruits, Alma Ruiz, who has lived in Austin since 2011.

This year will be Alma’s first year serving on the AVANCE-Austin board of directors but she is no stranger to the organization as a whole. Alma is one of AVANCE-Austin’s Mamas Avanzando, a Parent-Child Education Program alumna, and has been dedicating her time to provide educational trainings, opportunities, and community resources to other mothers just like her for the past 3 years. She also serves as a parent advocate for United Way for Greater Austin’s Parent Advisory Leadership Council.

We asked Alma a few questions about her involvement with AVANCE-Austin and here´s what she had to say:

What do you hope to accomplish as a board member at AVANCE-Austin?

I’ve always wanted each and every mom from the Austin area to have the opportunity to learn how to become successful and go through the same experience I went through here. I want them to be able to meet other mothers they can relate to. As a board member, I want to make sure this program is available to many mothers in Austin.

What is your favorite thing about AVANCE-Austin?

That it empowers and educates moms. As we are our children’s first teachers, I believe that if we educate ourselves, we can raise better kids and we can become a better society.

How does being a board member at AVANCE-Austin make you feel?

It makes me feel like I am doing something for my community, and I am a part of making a better world.

What was your favorite toy growing up?

I loved to play with Barbies as a child.

What was your favorite childhood book?

My favorite books were always about kids who had immigrated to the United States.

Along with advocating for early childhood education and 2-generation community programming within Travis County, Alma also is a stay-at-home mother to two beautiful growing daughters and sits on the board of directors for M.I.S.M.A (Mujeres Inspiradas en Sueños, Metas y Acciones). M.I.S.M.A. stands for Women Inspired by Dreams, Goals, and Actions and is dedicated to domestic worker’s rights in Texas and throughout the country.

We couldn’t be more proud to welcome Alma to our board of directors and we know she will continue to propel us forward. Be on the lookout for more spotlights on her amazing peers!


AVANCE-Austin’s Board of Directors blends a diverse group of distinguished leaders. The Board oversees the organization’s business strategy, ensures accountability, enhances its public reputation, and serves as a thought partner to the leadership team. Each of the members of our board comes from different walks-of-life but they are all committed to empowering AVANCE-Austin families reach their highest potential. AVANCE-Austin is so thankful and grateful for everything that the Board does to help this underserved and under-resourced population.