Roland Palencia

Visiting Speakers

Roland Palencia is the Community Benefits Director and corporate trainer at L.A. Care Health Plan. He has trained close to 2,000 corporate staff and community members, including over 500 managers in “How We Listen is How We Communicate,” a communication training designed by him.  He is the former Executive Director of Clinica Monseñor Oscar A. Romero and Equality California, and the multi-County Regional Director at The California Endowment, and Chief of Operations and Vice-President at the AIDS Healthcare Foundation.

He has received numerous awards acknowledging his decades of activism on behalf of marginalized and under resourced populations. In 2001, he was honored as a “Local Hero” by KCET (PBS affiliate) and Union Bank of California.

In the early 1980s, he became one of the early founders of the LGBTQ Latin@ movement in the greater Los Angeles area. He has been featured in a number of books and publications such as “Gay L.A.: A History of Sexual Outlaws, Power Politics, and Lipstick Lesbians” by Stuart Timmons and Lilian Faderman (2006). “Central Americans in Los Angeles” by Rosamaria Segura (2010); and “The Gay Revolution: The Story of the Struggle” by Lilian Faderman (2015). A165-page Master thesis by David Guzman, M.A., CSUN, records his life journey as a Guatemalan refugee and community activist. He is also the Executive Producer of “TransVisible: Bamby Salcedo’s Story,” a documentary depicting the life and activism of Bamby Salcedo, a nationally renowned transgender Latina activist. 

He is a Board member of the ONE Archives Foundation, the longest existing LGBTQ organization in the U.S., and Treasurer of Teatro Akabal Theatre, a socially conscious theater group collective.

He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from UCLA and a Masters in the Humanities from Pacifica Graduate Institute. He is a former lecturer at California State University of Northridge, Central American Studies Department.

His greatest pride is being a mentor to future generations of progressive activists.

Roland Palencia es el Director de Beneficios Comunitarios y instructor corporativo en L.A. Care Health Plan. Ha capacitado cerca de 2,000 empleados y miembros comunitarios en el entrenamiento “Cómo Escuchamos Es Cómo Nos Comunicamos,” diseñado por el mismo.

Roland ha funcionado como Director Ejecutivo de Clínica Monseñor Oscar A. Romero y Equality California. Director Regional de The California Endowment, y Jefe de Operaciones y Vicepresidente de AIDS Healthcare Foundation.  Ha recibido numerosos premios que reconocen sus décadas de activismo abogando por poblaciones marginadas, incluyendo inmigrantes y la comunicad LGBTQ.  En 2001, fue nombrado “Héroe Local” por KCET (afiliado de PBS) y Union Bank of California.

Se recibió con una Licenciatura en Historia de UCLA y una Maestría en Humanidades de Pacifica Graduate Institute. Ha sido profesor en California State University Northridge, Central American Studies department.  Su mayor orgullo es ser un mentor para las futuras generaciones progresistas y de conciencia social.