Dr. Sondra Roeuny is the proud daughter of courageous refugees who survived the Khmer Rouge genocide killed over two million Khmers due to starvation, torture, and persecution. She attributes her opportunities and achievements to her parents’ sacrifices, resilience, and ...Read more
Dr. Sondra Roeuny is the proud daughter of courageous refugees who survived the Khmer Rouge genocide killed over two million Khmers due to starvation, torture, and persecution. She attributes her opportunities and achievements to her parents’ sacrifices, resilience, and unconditional love and support in the face of adversity.
Because of her lived experience, Sondra is a relentless advocate for social justice. Sondra is committed to improving life opportunities for others. Sondra works on advocating for policy changes in areas such as immigration and deportation, voting rights, and reproductive justice health, rights, and justice, and the disaggregation of health care and educational data.
More recently, Sondra served as the Director of Public Affairs for New Mexico with Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains and Planned Parenthood Votes New Mexico, working to protect and expand access to a broad spectrum of reproductive health care, including abortion care, for women, pregnant people, and families in New Mexico. During her tenure, and in collaboration with coalition partners, Sondra successfully aligned the organizing, electoral, and legislative work, resulting in the historic passage of the Respect New Mexico Women and Families Act that repealed the old, 1969 abortion ban. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed the bill into law in February 2021 and New Mexico is one of the very few states to pass pro-abortion legislation this year. Additionally, because of her lived experiences, Sondra knows first-hand that people do not live single-issue lives. She is proud to have worked on supporting bills that centered BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities such as helping to educate people and pass the civil rights accountability measures and defeating anti-transgender legislation.
For Sondra, the political is personal. Like so many in our communities, she grew up in and lives in a world in which most appointed and elected officials neither look like her nor share her lived experiences. At the same time, Sondra’s experiences strengthened her resolve to elevate and advance the type of changes she wants to see in the world. That is, to create a more inclusive democratic society.
Given this, she is excited to bring her passion and talents to Emerge New Mexico to inspire, recruit, train, and help women win elected office. As a woman of color from a refugee diaspora experience, Sondra knows first-hand the benefits of having a more inclusive democracy that includes having more women from the New American Majority – Black, Brown and Indigenous women and women of color, as well as LGBTQ+, young, and unmarried women in office at all levels of government.
Sondra hails from California and has made Albuquerque, New Mexico a home for her family. She has a six-year-old son who keeps Sondra on her toes, especially in the pandemic. When time permits, Sondra enjoys trekking through ancient temples and ruins. Some of her favorite adventures took her to the natural beauty of Belize, Guatemala, and Cambodia.
Sondra received an M.Ed. and an Ed.D. from the University of Pennsylvania’s Chief Learning Officer Program. She earned a master’s degree from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in public policy, with a concentration in internal and financial management. Sondra received a bachelor’s degree in social welfare with high honors from the University of California at Berkeley.Read Less