Alicia Benavidez Lewis
Policy Advocate, Blue Coast Strategies/Corbin and Kaiser
Alicia serves as Vice President at Corbin and Kaiser, and has extensive policy expertise both inside the California Legislature and as an advocate. During her time in the CA Capitol, Alicia served as a Chief of Staff in the Assembly and Deputy Legislative Director in the Senate. As an advocate she has worked on various issues that include employment and workforce policy, criminal justice reform, consumer protection, education, and health. Alicia previously worked as the State Policy Director for the Center for Employment Opportunities, where she led a multi-state policy agenda and established advocacy opportunities for the organization's program participants. Additionally, she served as a lobbyist for the League of CA Cities, representing over 417 local entities on labor and employment.
Some of Alicia’s most notable accomplishments include the landmark Fair Sentencing for Youth Act, which ended life without parole for juveniles, working to end the solitary confinement of minors, and being a key strategist in the campaign to end predatory lending in California. Other legislative accomplishments and experience includes:
Leading coalition efforts to reform the child support system in CA. Ending the lifetime ban on food assistance for those with drug convictions in Michigan.Promoting pay equity by limiting the use of ones prior salary.
Restoration of optical benefits within Medi-Cal.Enhancing social media protections for students.
Expanding services for youth who are pregnant or parenting.
Secured over $60 million in funding for domestic violence shelters.
Streamlining CalWORKs resources and services for victims of domestic violence.
Contributing to numerous pieces of legislation that have increased governmental transparency, enhanced open-meeting laws, and strengthened the California Public Records Act.
In addition to her formal advocacy and training, Alicia a proud co-founder of We Said Enough, a nonprofit that is aimed at addressing the pervasive culture of harassment and sexual violence. The group penned the first open #MeToo letter in politics and has worked nationally to move legislation and champion reform. Alicia serves on the Board of Directors for CA Latinas for Reproductive Justice. She is a former Executive Board member for the California Edge Coalition.
Born and raised in the Central Valley, Alicia earned her BA in Political Science from California State University, Stanislaus, where she was a Ronald E. McNair Scholar.