Ester Quintana Matheson, Founder
Ester grew up in the Las Cruces, NMex area and has lived in Boulder since January 1970. Her then husband was at NCAR and Ester a stay-at-home mom. She has a son who graduated from Boulder High and currently lives in Portland, OR with wife and 2 grandchildren.
With time on her hands, she began to volunteer and never stopped. Eventually, she went back to school and earned a business degree from CU. She has been on a number of boards throughout the community. Her passion was and still is education which led her to co-found BCLL in 1999. Her now husband, Bob of 30 years, has been just as passionate about the League as she still is.
“I believe in Paying it Forward. I received a lot of support and encouragement from friends and family as I inched my way toward my business degree. I am delighted to see some of our scholarship recipients and graduates also begin to pay it forward by volunteering in various ways to help those students following in their footsteps. A dream realized.”
Joan grew up in Massachusetts. She and her first husband moved to Boulder in 1971. Joan has had three careers: French teacher, family lawyer, and founder and CEO of Culinary School of the Rockies. Joan has been on several Boards of Directors over the years - Safehouse, Community Foodshare, Boulder Valley Women’s Health and the Boulder Philharmonic. Thirty years ago, she and her late husband Bob started a small fund (the Robert Golten Special Needs Fund) which provides one-time emergency assistance to people on the brink of poverty. Joan is thrilled to be on the Board of BCLL, where amazing, hard-working and deserving students are given opportunities to fulfill dreams and pursue goals which might otherwise be out of reach.
Michelle is an Advanced Placement Spanish teacher at Boulder High School who directs the Adelante! program for first-generation Latino students. In this capacity, she is instrumental in increasing graduation rates and student achievement, securing grant monies, and expanding educational offerings to facilitate student success in high school and beyond. She is actively involved in social justice issues confronting her students, especially first generation high school graduates.
Michelle has a BA from Boston College as well as an MA from the University of Northern Colorado and an EdS from the University of Colorado, Denver. She achieved National Board Teacher Certification in 2007. Michelle has served on the boards of directors of the Boulder Rotary Club, Share-A-Gift, Frequent Flyers Productions, the Milagros Scholarship Fund and the Boulder County Latina League. She has earned recognition from the Boulder Chamber of Commerce, Zonta Foothills, the YWCA, Boulder Rotary Club and Impact on Education’s. She is proud to be the mother of Sarah and Tim, both DU graduates. Her hobbies include travel, reading, yoga and skiing.
Soy un estudiante de primera generación nacido y criado en Boulder, Colorado. Me gradué de la Universidad Estatal Metropolitana de Denver con una Licenciatura en Trabajo Social en 2021 y una Maestría en Trabajo Social en 2022. Mis padres se vieron obligados a abandonar la escuela a los 12 años para mantener a sus familias. A medida que hicieron la transición a la edad adulta, se dirigieron a los Estados Unidos en busca de una mejor calidad de vida. Al crecer, la universidad se presentaba como una necesidad, pero se valoraba como un lujo, algo que a mí me parecía imposible de lograr. Gracias a becas como la Liga Latina del Condado de Boulder, pude cumplir mis sueños de trabajar con familias y educación sin tener que enfrentar una carga financiera.
Leticia A. de Lozano , Chair of Scholarship Committee
A native of Mexico City, Dr. Leticia A. de Lozano earned her teaching degree in Mexico, and her Masters and Doctorate from the University of Colorado.
Over the years Leticia’s success as a teacher has been recognized regionally, nationally and internationally. She is the recipient of numerous awards such as Milken Family Education Award, Ohtli Award –the highest award given internationally from of the Government of Mexico, “The best should teach” by the University of Colorado, the Pacesetter in Education, Amgen Award for Teaching Excellence, Jared Polis Foundation Teacher Recognition, Impact on Education and honored as the favorite teacher of a US Presidential Scholar.
For 27 years Leticia taught Boulder High School’s Advanced Spanish courses. Under her leadership the advanced Spanish Program grew from a handful of students to more than 150 students. One of Leticia most meaningful achievements was to include first generation Hispanic in these college credit classes which resulted in a diverse classroom environment that fostered success for all students regardless of socioeconomic background. She founded the program Adelante! to address the high risk Hispanic students’ educational and societal challenges such as poverty, immigration status, language development. Though she is retired, her legacy continues as the program continues to exist and thrive. Over 95% of Adelante! Program participants graduate annually, and almost all continue on to post secondary studies.
Leticia says that her most meaningful award is seeing her students finishing high school and even better earning their university degrees.
Nicky Wolman, Scholarship Committee
I joined BCLL because I believe in the transformative power of education! I grew up in a university city and it was fairly easy for everyone to go the college. Today, going to college is important, but often not affordable. BCLL helps that possible!
My parents were first generation Americans and going to college was not available to their parents. I saw first hand how going to the university changed their lives! My dad became a newspaper publisher and my mother had a non traditional degree for a woman in the 1940’ies, labor economics! I studied to be a teacher and worked with non traditional students, creating mentorship programs, leadership programs for girls, and special counseling programs designed to help students envision college and a career.
It’s a great joy to help students succeed in college!
Ann Scarritt, Chair of the Board
An important objective for Ann Scarritt is to engage authentically with community and be a part of positive change. She had the honor of working in multicultural educational community for over twenty years. Growing up in Boulder in a family that valued social justice, it seemed an inevitable path. As an educator, she learned so much from her students - how to listen, how to build empathy, when to take action, the importance of voice and much more. She also saw first hand how scholarship money is so essential for many students, not just to ease the stress of debt and overwork but also to have a support system that sees you for who you are and knows you are worth the investment. She still lives in Boulder with her spouse Samantha and their pets and enjoys frequent visits from many nieces and nephews.
Midge Korczak came to the University of Colorado in 1963. While she spent considerable time in Greece and Israel after graduation, Colorado always
called to her. In 1977 she and her husband returned to Boulder with their two sons and established a home. Midge retired as Executive Director of the Boulder County Bar Association in 1995 and shortly thereafter adopted a class of Dreamers in the I Have a 'Dream program. Working with young latinx students for 10 years gave Midge the enthusiasm to continue to support education for latino youth. As such, she joined Boulder County Latina League in 2005 to promote and expand access to higher education for our county's Latino community. Midge also supports Latina students at the University of Colorado and Front Range Community College.
Miho Shida, Scholarship Committee
My parents came to the U.S. in their 20's back in the 1950's so that my father could pursue his Ph.D. in polymer chemistry. Always meaning to go back to Japan, my parents kept extending their stay because of the opportunities available to them. Before he retired at the age of 78, he had built a successful company through his many patents and employed many Americans.
My Ph.D. in Biology has allowed me to do research in Japan, Canada and the US. It has opened many doors for me and enabled me to meet people I otherwise would not encounter. Although I am no longer an active researcher, this training has made me more analytical and persistent. No matter what you end up doing, it's safe to say that one will never regret having an education!