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St. Paul’s Human Rights Director Frias leaves for Minneapolis Foundation

Luz Maria Frias will become the foundation’s vice president of community philanthropy.

Luz Maria Frias, who’s been director of St. Paul’s Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity (HREEO) office since 2009, has resigned to become vice president of community philanthropy at the Minneapolis Foundation.

Readus Fletcher, currently the city’s HREEO deputy director, will serve as interim director until a community advisory committee and the City Council select a new director within the next 30 days.

Said St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman:

“Director Frias was a critical part of establishing our Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity department, and her work in that department has been remarkable.”

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Frias had previously been chief legal officer of Centro Legal, a nonprofit law office for the Latino community. She’s also been a family court magistrate and a hearing examiner for the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community.

She worked as Coleman’s external affairs director before he appointed her in 2009 to be the city’s first director of the newly created Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity Department.

At the Minneapolis Foundation, Frias will oversee Community Grantmaking, which distributes $5 million each year for education, economic vitality and  social capital projects. 

Sandra L. Vargas, president and CEO of The Minneapolis Foundation, said:

Luz’s commitment to low income residents and communities of color, inclusive approach to addressing issues, tactical tenacity and strategic planning skills will make her a valuable asset to the Foundation. She has served as a great steward of public tax dollars, and we believe she will also be a faithful steward of the Foundation’s charitable resources – listening and responding to community needs to address the greatest challenges facing our city efficiently and effectively.”

Two Cities blog, which covers Minneapolis and St. Paul City Halls, is made possible in part by grants from The Saint Paul Foundation and the Carolyn Foundation.