Gloria Wiggins, division manager of Catholic Charities El Programa Hispano since 2002, died Dec. 1.
Ms. Wiggins was a leader within the Latino community and an advocate for low-income families and children at risk. She began working for Catholic Charities El Programa Hispano in 2000 as a case worker and became division manager of El Programa Hispano in 2002. She worked tirelessly to expand and enhance the organization’s outreach and service offerings to the diverse Latino community in Multnomah County, lobbying especially for policy changes to promote minority academic performance and assist victims of domestic violence.
In addition to her community work on behalf of the Latino community, Wiggins worked in partnership with varied diverse communities to reduce disparities based on race and ethnicity. She was a founding member of the Coalition of Communities of Color, and volunteered with numerous community groups, such as the Rockwood Urban Renewal Committee, the Gresham Safety Blue Ribbon Task Force, and Multnomah County’s Fatality Review Committee. In recognition of her work, the Multnomah County Citizen Involvement Committee honored Ms. Wiggins with the Gladys McCoy Award for lifetime volunteer achievement in 2010 and the Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce with its Latino Community Service Award in 2011.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Wednesday, Dec. 7, at St. Henry Church. Memorial donations of toys for El Programa Hispano’s Las Posadas Christmas event may be delivered to 138 N.E. 3rd Street in Gresham, Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. before Dec. 22.