Dr. Lisa Calderón was born and raised in Denver and is a professor at Regis University and has taught in academia for over 15 years in the areas of Women’s Studies, Ethnic Studies, Sociology and Criminal Justice. She has also earned a bachelors degree, master’s degree, law degree, and a doctorate in education and has received several awards for inspirational leadership for her work serving the community. She has also dedicated herself to over 30-years of public service in the Denver community which includes being a justice reform advocate, nonprofit executive and social justice organizer.
In 2019, she was the first woman of color to make the ballot for Mayor of Denver with her ideological message based on the principles of equity, fairness and justice. Although she was out spent 20 to 1 in campaign fundraising by the incumbent, she made an impressive showing finishing 3rd in the general election and as a first time grassroots candidate, garnered 33,000 votes and fell just short of making the 2019 Denver Mayoral Run Off Election by 6.4% behind Jamie Giellis.
The former Denver Mayoral candidate has been exploring and has decided on the next phase in her career to promote her policy priorities for resolving the affordable housing crisis, stemming the tide of gentrification and displacement through a civil rights framework, reducing mass incarceration and increasing gender equity.
Dr. Lisa Calderón announced this week that she will be serving as the Chief of Staff for District 9 working with City Councilwoman-Elect Candi CdeBaca. CdeBaca and Calderón were supportive of each other on the campaign trail, as government-reform candidates addressing gentrification and the lack of affordable housing and homelessness. Dr. Calderon and Councilwoman-Elect CdeBaca will be sworn into office on the July 15th 2019.
Correction: This story was amended on July 15 to reflect that Dr. Calderón is not the first woman of color to be Chief of Staff for Denver District 9. Chy Montoya, was the first woman of color in that position when she served as Chief of Staff for former City Council Member Albus Brooks.