Krista is the Founder and President of the Tacoma Women of Color Collective (TWCC) and Co-Founder of the Community Market.
As a proud Mexicana and daughter to immigrant father and migrant worker mother, Krista felt pulled to study law and economics in her undergraduate year at the University of Washington. She had her sights set on Immigration Law but in the midst of pursuing her education she became hyper aware of the lack of opportunities and representation for women of color.
“I didn’t have a woman of color educator until my last year of undergrad, and I didn’t have a Latina educator until the last quarter…One of the biggest challenges in my life was not seeing anyone like me in professional spaces… and because of the lack of representation and constantly doing invisible labor it’s taken me years to see my value. Now that I have, there’s just no going back.”
Perez has always had a knack for community building, so when she saw the gaps in community spaces for women of color, she began ideating solutions. In 2019, she decided to test the waters by facilitating her first event on Imposter Syndrome in the workplace. The event was such a success Krista formed TWCC right after and went on to do 35 more events within its first year, won the Power Collaborator Award from Tacoma Urban League and was featured in South Sound Business Magazine and Grit City Magazine.
TWCC is focused on providing opportunities for women of color to do the work they love, be recognized for it and compensated appropriately. Some of their programs focus specifically on young women of color in business, educational opportunities, community building, and collaborating with other nonprofit organizations.
“Women of color do a lot of invisible labor. We’re constantly creating something out of nothing and it’s time we’re recognized and compensated for it…TWCC holds space for women to be whoever they are. That’s the most important thing, because women are amazing. They don’t need to be anything that others say they are. They can be a stay-at-home mom, janitor, lawyer– whatever it is you do women deserve to have safe spaces to blossom.”