Spanish Language Advisory Board

Acceso ("access" in Spanish) is a committee that assists the Clerk and Recorder and the Director of Elections in their outreach efforts to Denver's limited-English, Spanish-speaking citizens.

Central goals include:

  • Making voting materials more accessible,
  • Ensuring an adequate number of Spanish-speaking poll workers
  • Increasing voting participation

Learn about Acceso's history, structure and mission

Acceso's Mission

"Provide advice and guidance to the Office of the Clerk and Recorder and its Elections Division to assist in communicating to the Spanish language community for purposes of providing elections information and promoting voting and participation of all citizens in the elections process." 

Acceso's History

  • In 1973, a provision was added to the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965, mandating that counties must provide bilingual election materials and information if 5 percent or more of their voting-age citizens speak a language other than English, or have limited English skills.
  • In 2002, the City and County of Denver met the 5 percent threshold for Spanish speakers, and formed the original Spanish Language Advisory Board (SLAB).  
  • In 2008, newly-elected Clerk and Recorder Stephanie O’Malley built upon the efforts of SLAB, creating the Acceso Spanish-Language Voter Advisory Board.
  • In 2009, Clerk O’Malley collaborated on and backed an ordinance to formally establish the committee, giving the board permanence and a more formal structure.
  • The Acceso ordinance took effect January 11, 2010. The first Acceso board members were appointed in July 2010. Members then elected the committee's officers.
  • In 2013, Acceso endorsed the position of Denver Clerk and Recorder Debra Johnson in favor of House Bill 13-1303, creating the Voter Access & Modernized Elections Act. The bill, sponsored by Representatives Hullinghorst/Pabon and Senator Giron, advances the goals of Acceso by modernizing elections to reflect the way people vote.

Acceso's Structure

Today, Acceso has 16 members representing various geographic areas of Denver. The members serve three years and participate in scheduled meetings and educational activities about the electoral process.

Attend a meeting

The Acceso board meets on a monthly basis. Public meeting invitations will be posted to this webpage.

Meetings are dynamic, and all board members contribute their ideas and updates to the team, the Director of Elections, and the Clerk and Recorder. The board may schedule additional meetings, and provides notices of all meetings in accordance with the Denver open meetings ordinance.

Become a board member

Members of the Denver community with an interest in providing information about, and promoting participation in, the electoral process are encouraged to apply for membership on the Acceso board.

  • Membership is voluntary and unpaid
  • Applicants must be registered voters and should be involved with the Spanish-speaking Denver community
  • Fluency in Spanish is especially welcome
  • Applications are reviewed by the Acceso board 
  • Members are appointed by the Clerk and Recorder
  • Application period is open. 

Apply now


Current Board Members

Marisa Krueger, Chair

Portrait of Marisa Krueger

Marisa (she/her/hers) currently works as CWEE’s (Center for Work Education and Employment) Manager of Data Analytics and Impact. Marisa brings person-forward data practices. Prior to joining CWEE, Marisa worked in the nonprofit sector focusing on accessible data and projects supporting BIPOC, immigrant, and refugee-serving nonprofit organizations. Marisa is a Colorado native who attended the University of Colorado Denver, where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Public Health with a minor in Psychology. She recently earned her master’s degree in Public Administration with a concentration on Nonprofit Management. Marisa is active in the community, serving in a leadership role of the LatinasGive! Giving Circle and volunteering for causes throughout the state. Marisa works to create equitable systems statewide through resource procurement, education and outreach efforts, and community building.


Vallerie Bustamante

VBnewHeadshot.png Vallerie Bustamante recently graduated with her bachelor’s degree in Political Science from New Mexico State University. She attended Denver Public Schools throughout her grade school career and invested her time and dedication in trying to make positive change in the schools she attended. She has worked with several organizations to push events and/or agendas such as removing implicit bias within her school through Student Board of Education, Ban the Box campaign with the Denver Area Labor Federation, and special events with the Congresswoman Veronica Escobar. She is currently a Parent Organizer for a non-profit organization in Colorado.


Hilda Gehrke

Portrait of Hilda Gehrke

Hilda Gehrke is a Social Leadership Coach, Facilitator and Interpreter. She migrated from Mexico in 1996 and has been an interpreter for more than 11 years. Hilda graduated with a B.S. in Psychology from Regis University and completed her training as an Ontological Coach from Newfield Network, INC in 2017. She obtained her certification as a Certified Newfield Coach (NCC) and has more than 200 hours of experience as a group and personal coach. Hilda is an active member of the International Coaching Federation Colorado Chapter (ICF).

Hilda has a particular interest in developing voices within the Latinx community. She is a Jefferson County facilitator and has been facilitating with the Family Leadership Training Institute, working to encourage community leaders to use their talents to make their neighborhoods healthier places for their children. She is involved in community work to support leaders and organizations to create inclusive spaces. She is a board member of the Jefferson County Department of Public Health, and her mission is to encourage cooperation and equality.

Salvador Hernandez

bio coming soon

Maria Jose Torres

Portrait of Maria Jose Torres

Maria is an associate program officer at Rose Community Foundation. She also serves in the steering committee for the Emergent Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP) Colorado Chapter, a national network of non-profit and philanthropy professionals focused on equity and social justice.

Maria moved to Colorado from San Luis Potosi, Mexico to pursue her master’s degree in international development from the University of Denver’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies. Before joining Rose Community Foundation, she was the program director for Healthy Learning Paths, a local non-profit focused on health education for children and families, where she coordinated the school and community programs and special events and managed their volunteer program. While in graduate school she also interned for local non-profits in the Denver area, the Mexican Consulate, and the United Nations Development Program for Latin America and the Caribbean. Maria was appointed to the ACCESO board in April of 2020.


Angelica Granados

Headshot_Angelica_GranadosAngelica Granados is a graduate of the University of Denver where she graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and Spanish with minors in Ethnic Studies and Sociology. As a Denver girl born and raised Angelica is a Denver Public School alumni from Abraham Lincoln High School in Southwest Denver. As an advocate for political engagement within the Latino community, Angelica's experience in DU's Political Science Program exposed her to Policy and Research which later led her to become a Capitol Fellow for the Colorado Latino Leadership Advocacy and Research. Currently, Angelica advocates for her community and Coloradans across the state in numerous ways.