First-generation Guatemalan immigrant, Ms. Ruiz was President of the Sacramento Food Policy Council since its founding in 2015. She also sits on the state steering committee of the California Food Policy Council and Slow Food California Policy Committee. In 2014 and 2016, she traveled to Turin, Italy as one of over 150 Slow Food USA delegates to Terra Madre – a gathering of food and farming communities from more than 100 countries – and represented the United States at the 7th Congress of Slow Food International, convened in Chengdu, China 2017. Ms. Ruiz has previously worked with youth and communities in her roles as: the Kitchen Classroom Coordinator and Culinary Instructor at Grant High School's GEO Academy and Luther Burbank High School Urban Ag Academy, a certified Food Genius with Food Literacy Center, a graduate of Alice Waters' Edible Schoolyard Academy and Farm to School Intensive training, and formerly Head Instructor of summer camp programs with Jr Chef Central. With more than 20 years of working in Sacramento's top restaurants including The Waterboy, Freeport Bakery, The Kitchen, and Biba Ristorante, she's known for combining her love of the culinary arts with her passion for supporting the work of charitable organizations as a lifelong activist and community organizer.