Otilio “O.T.” Quintero Leaving Barrios Unidos

Last week, Otilio “O.T” Quintero, a founding member of CJNY and long-time youth violence prevention advocate, announced his departure from Santa Cruz Barrios Unidos. O.T. joined Barrios Unidos in 1992 and has since worked on growing Barrios Unidos in its efforts to  improve the lives of youth of color in Santa Cruz and Monterey Counties, through supporting community-based organizations in preventing gang violence. We send much respect to our elder, guide, and friend as he transitions into new opportunities. Below is O.T.’s announcement in full.   To all my Familia and Friends,  When I came to Barrios Unidos in 1992, I was looking for a way to give back to my community at a place that was working to prevent violence against youth by promoting cultura (culture), education, leadership and economic-development. I have a love for serving my community by advocating for equality and change. I knew Barrios Unidos would be the right place and the right job. But I could never have ever imagined all the things we have been able to accomplish and what it has meant to be here.  It has been an honor serving and working with communities, public/private agencies, legislators, international organizations, and our children and adults in prisons and detention centers. I’ve learned so much during my time with Barrios Unidos and have had the opportunity to help create local, state, and national policies that promote social justice for the voices that are often unheard by society.  During my journey at Barrios Unidos I have not only had the opportunity to help build the vision and capacity of the organization, but also the...