Born in El Salvador, raised in Oakland. Like his upbringing, Erick Garcia Lopez has many identities he has nurtured during his time on the operations team at the Kapor Center; DACA student, son, brother, and mental health advocate to name a few.
Erick enthusiastically works behind the scenes at the Kapor Center ensuring everything in the building runs smoothly, from the management of maintenance, security, and reception staff, to keeping the Kapor Center fully stocked with everything from office supplies to beverages, gluten-free snack options, and more each and every day.
“To know that I’m making someone’s workday better so they can make a change in the world, that makes me feel like my job accounts for a lot more than just restocking paper.”
Outside of the office, Erick has pushed himself, his family, and his community to move past the negative stigmas associated with mental health and what it means to be successful. “Often times in communities of color, there’s a negative stigma when it comes to mental health. You’re not encouraged to talk about it. You’re not encouraged to seek help.”
Through his work at the Kapor Center and the work Erick has challenged himself to work on personally, Erick has learned to define his own standards of what it means to be healthy, successful, and most importantly, what it means to be happy.
Watch the video above to learn more about Erick, his work at the Kapor Center, and to hear his Distance Traveled story.