Meet the Staff

Alma Johnson-Hawkins

Interim Executive Director - ajohnson-hawkins@cluejustice.org

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Rev. Alma Johnson-Hawkins is an active Elder in Full Connection in the United Methodist Church, California-Pacific Conference.  The focus of her call to service has mostly lived outside the walls of local church. She has held various positions as an administrator in higher education, faculty at a Theological University, and recently as a volunteer consultant/coach for nonprofit organizations.  Rev. Alma is uniquely prepared for the Executive Director position with extensive training and experience relative to nonprofit organizational leadership and management. She also has experience in providing executive coaching, organizational and strategic planning, resource development, and board development.  

Rev. Alma spent many years as a senior level administrator Interim President at Los Angeles Valley College, Vice President of Student Services, LA Pierce College, Vice President of Academic Affairs, Los Angeles Mission College, and a variety of other director and manager positions during her career with LACCD.  Education continues to be high on Alma’s areas of interest as she works with Master of Divinity students in the area of practical theology and leadership at Claremont School of Theology.

In a pastoral role Rev. Alma has served local church congregations in Altadena and Gardena, CA, and also spent some time in hospital chaplaincy in the Providence Health Care system.  Rev. Johnson-Hawkins participates in ecumenical activities such the Channel Island Emmaus spiritual renewal program and consults with Christian women's groups designing and facilitating retreats. She is a regular speaker for the Comfort Zone Program, a Family Life Ministry designed to nurture and inspire hope for struggling families.  Rev. Alma served one term as Chair of the Board of Directors for Celebrate Life Cancer Ministry a non-profit organization advocating for healthcare for cancer patients who struggle with accessing treatment.

Among her many spiritual gifts, talents, and interests Rev. Alma is an anointed spiritual leader in the areas of administration, prophetic preaching, teaching and learning, reconciliation and peacemaking, and compassionate pastoral care.


Rev. Rebecca Benefiel-Bijur

Director of Development - rbijur@cluejustice.org

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Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur is an ordained Unitarian Universalist minister who has served congregations in Santa Monica, CA, as well as Stow and Cambridge, MA. She is a dynamic speaker committed to spiritual pluralism, worker justice, and anti-oppression ministries, she is also an experienced fundraiser who has supported nonprofit and faith-based organizations in increasing their funding from individuals, foundations, corporations, and government sources. Rev. Bijur was born in Tokyo and grew up in Japan, suburban Maryland, and India. She holds degrees from Yale College and the Harvard Divinity School and lives in Santa Monica with her husband and three children.  

Kevin Johnson

Operations Manager - kjohnson@cluejustice.org
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From our Los Angeles office, Kevin Johnson oversees the processes that enable CLUE to do its work efficiently and effectively and collaborates with other organizations working for a just economy. He has an extensive background managing grassroots social and environmental justice causes, work that has taken him to forty three states, and even Antarctica. He is an occasional speaker and writer on these topics. Because faith plays an important role in his life, he believes clergy are uniquely positioned to stand with those struggling for a better society.

 


Guillermo Torres

Interim Director of Organizing - gtorres@cluejustice.org

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Guillermo Torres spearheads CLUE's immigration campaigns (Sacred Resistance & Sanctuary; UCARE) as well as our Hospitality Training Academy outreach to diverse communities. He advocates for strong community benefits agreements in new building developments, particularly for securing local, diverse hiring, and worker rights. Guillermo was the lead CLUE organizer for the successful living wage campaign in Long Beach as well as the first-ever flying food workers unionization campaign at LAX. Guillermo has a been a Teamster and an immigrant rights activist. His faith is a vital part of his work. Though he was raised a Pentecostal, he only reconnected with his faith in 2007, after a painful encounter. He sees this God's love revealed in his work to heal injustices and suffering in our community.


Sandra Ortega

Orange County Senior Organizer - sortega@cluejustice.org

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Sandra Ortega has been working with Orange County communities for more than 10 years in various capacities. She has provided leadership training in low-income and marginalized communities to improve leadership and advocacy. She was a youth leader at her church for six years, including as part of the Lives Worth Saving Gang Human Trafficking Intervention program. Sandra started working with CLUE in 2013, concentrating on issues of immigration, low-wage work, gang violence and family separation. She attended Fullerton College and transferred to University of California at Irvine, receiving her BA in sociology. She is the proud mother of Briana and Cassandra, and has three grandchildren. She enjoys family outings, art, music, and balloon decorating.


Rev. Rae Huang

Faith-rooted Organizer - rhuang@cluejustice.org

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Rev. Rae Huang is an ordained pastor in the Presbyterian Church (USA). She has a Masters of Divinity from Boston University-School of Theology and a Masters of Theology from Duke Divinity.  She has more than 13 years of experience working in non-profit, ecumenical, and interfaith contexts domestically and abroad, ranging from organizing youth and families on healthcare and street violence issues to her chaplaincy work in street, university, and hospital settings.  She also works with Kaleidoscope Institute, training faith leaders and clergy in anti-racism work and leadership, and provides mediation support for communities and schools.   

 

 


Pastor Stephen "Cue" JnMarie

Faith-rooted Organizer - cue@cluejustice.org

Stephen_Cue_JnMarieSM.jpgPastor Stephen "Cue" JnMarie is a former Virgin Records hip-hop artist who became the pastor at Skid Row's Church Without Walls several years ago. He joined CLUE's Black/Jewish Justice Alliance in 2014 after hearing about it from a program at USC’s center for Religion and Civic Culture. In addition to his pastoral duties, Pastor Cue is a faith-rooted organizer for CLUE.

 

 

 


Jeremy Arnold

Faith-rooted Organizer - jarnold@cluejustice.org

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Jeremy Arnold, CLUE’s Faith Rooted Organizer in Anaheim, was born and raised in Southern California. After dropping out of Santa Monica High School, Jeremy graduated from the New Roads School. He worked in the service industry for eight years before opting for a career as an organizer. He was a CLUE Young Religious Leaders Fellow in 2013 and 2014. In 2015, he completed UNITE HERE’s Organizing Beyond Barriers internship in New Orleans, LA; Biloxi, MS; and Tunica, MS. He earned a B.A. in English from Tulane University, where he ran the writing, tutoring and job search coaching program for two years. He is a member of the Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Santa Monica and a proud blood donor. His mother, Abby, is a grant writer and activist in Santa Monica, and his late father, Karl, was an AFSCME shop steward.

 


Rev. Pastor Juan Carlos Durruthy

Faith-rooted Organizer - jdurruthy@cluejustice.org

Juan Carlos Durruthy is a faith-rooted organizer working in immigration issues. He is a lay leader with the United Methodist Church who has served as pastor, evangelism director and youth director over 15 years of service. He is an ordained minister and chaplain and has a B.A. and M.A. in theology. He also has several other UMC certifications. Juan Carlos has dedicated his life to his ministry, to his community and to serving God. He considers this work his life’s calling. Juan Carlos was born in Havana, Cuba. He has been married to his wife, Zenaida, for 15 years, and they have two daughters.

 


Lucero Garcia

Faith-rooted Organizer - lgarcia@cluejustice.org

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Lucero Garcia graduated from the University of California, Irvine (UCI) in 2017 with Bachelor of Arts degrees in global cultures and art history. She works in Orange County on immigration issues and first joined CLUE in the summer of 2017 after participating in the Ziegler Young Religious Leaders Fellowship (YRLF 2017). She learned the faith-rooted organizing model which aims to eradicate the suffering of working class and immigrant workers and their families. Her faith is rooted and grounded in God’s love for justice. She believes social justice is for everyone, regardless of their ethnicity, age, gender, and religion.

 

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