Board of directors
Guiding the Path to Mental Health Equity
Welcome to Contigo Wellness where we are dedicated to advancing mental health equity for all individuals and communities. Our Board of Directors plays a pivotal role in shaping our mission, overseeing our initiatives, and leading us towards a more equitable future in mental health care and support. Get to know the passionate individuals who drive our organization’s success.
The Contigo Wellness vision is to end the stigma around mental health issues in BIPOC communities by providing access to much needed resources to this community in a holistic approach. Our entire BIPOC Board represents the community and is responsible for establishing policies that carry out the educational and mental health programming by providing high-level guidance and leadership to ensure Contigo Wellness meets the needs of the communities served. Our Board also continues to serves this purpose through their daily work, and we are honored to have them.
We’re transforming lives and actively looking for Board Members who can help us continue to fulfill this mission!
Our Board Members
Meet the esteemed members of our Board of Directors, each bringing a wealth of experience, expertise, and dedication to the cause of mental health equity.
Blanca Valencia, M.Ed
Blanca Valencia was born and raised in Brownsville, Texas. Understanding the intersection of education and border life, her time obtaining her Bachelor’s degree in history at the University of Texas at Austin demonstrated the need for more equity-minded, high quality educators to enter urban spaces, particularly among larger concentrations of communities of Color. Blanca has been an educator in alternative education settings in Central Texas for ten years, working to contribute to and create safe and empowering educational spaces for young people of color. After returning to the University of Texas at Austin for a Masters degree in Curriculum & Instruction with a research focus on social justice and equity in schools, Blanca is now a school administrator. She aims to expand capacity building and empowerment of teachers in reforming curriculum building, disciplinary practices, and mental health practices in order to create innovative, equitable, and empowering spaces for youth.
Cynthia "Cy" Herrera, JD
Cy graduated from Loyola University Chicago, School of Law with a Juris Doctor and a Certificate in Health Law from the nationally acclaimed Beazley Institute for Health Law and Policy. Her interest in public health began as a psychology major, when she served as a volunteer at The University of Michigan Law School Pediatric Advocacy Initiative, and she has been a staunch advocate for public health equity ever since.
Samantha Benn, LCSW-S
Samantha is an Indigenous & Latinx, queer psychotherapist in Austin,TX that specializes in helping black, indigenous, and people of color heal from trauma and step into their power. She is a Hood Feminist informed by Mikki Kendall’s book “Hood Feminism” that spells out how mainstream feminism has left women of color behind by not first ensuring that all women have their basic needs met. Samantha graduated from The University of Texas at Austin in 2014 with her Master’s in Social Work and has since provided therapeutic services to the most vulnerable people in Austin–those experiencing homelessness and trimorbid health concerns. Samantha also worked at the local mental health authority treating severe mental illness and volunteering to co-facilitate monthly discussions about health disparities negatively impacting people of color in mental health care. Samantha is an activist that spends her free time disrupting systems of oppression. She founded her private practice, Culture in Mind, in 2021 with the intention of delivering psychotherapy in a anti-racist way that draws on culture for self-healing and self-discovery. Social Justice, racial equity, and destigmatization of mental illness are a few of Samantha’s priorities in life. Samantha values creating space and deepening connection with others–animals and humans alike.
In her free time she enjoys exercising, writing, volunteering with local nonprofits, leading bible studies, and hanging out with family and friends.
Daniel Hinojosa, MBA
Stephanie Bergara is a native of Austin Texas. She grew up on the Southeast Austin and spent most of her early years living in the Dove Springs Neighborhood.
Currently she is serving as a Program and Event Manager at Waterloo Greenway Conservancy, a 1.5 mile park system located in the heart of Downtown Austin. Day to day she supports local events and initiatives including local talent buying, signature programming including Waterloo Greenway’s Earth Day Festivities, Rainbow on The Creek, Dia De Los Muertos and Austin’s renowned Creek Show.
Sarah Joyner, LCSW
Tk Tunchez is a full time multi-media artist, cultural producer and event organizer. She is the Creative Director and Founder of Austin-based Maximalist Accessory brand: Las Ofrendas; Local Marketplace and Cultural Event: Frida Friday ATX; and, creative nightlife venture: Fuego ATX. From her artistic practice to her community work she is committed to creating spaces that amplify and promote WoC/ BIPOC/Queer and emerging artists, while creating resources to build wealth within economically marginalized communities
Thank You for Your Support
We extend our gratitude to our Board of Directors for their dedication and leadership in advancing mental health equity. Together, we are creating a world where everyone has access to quality mental health care and support.
Contact Our Board
If you have any questions, suggestions, or would like to connect with any of our board members, please contact us. We value your input and engagement.