Bloomington resident Kim Rocha was recognized as the 2019 “Woman of the Year” within the 20th State Senate District by California State Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) last month.
Leyva said she conferred the honor upon Rocha for her committed local activism and continued advocacy for the community of Bloomington and surrounding areas. Rocha is the co-founder of “Concerned Neighbors of Bloomington,” a community based organization promoting leadership development and community participation in local social justice issues,
“Kim Rocha is a tireless advocate and champion for the voiceless, promoting a more sustainable quality of life, responsible land use decisions, improved public health, and environmental justice,” said Leyva. “As the chair of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and the senator representing the 20th State Senate District, it is my honor to recognize Kim Rocha as the 2019 ‘Woman of the Year’ for her ongoing commitment to fighting for her community and making sure that local residents and neighborhoods are protected from harm. As we begin Women’s History Month, it is truly fitting that I have the opportunity to publicly highlight Kim’s inspiring work in the community and the amazing determination she brings to fight for environmental and social justice.”
Rocha became a strong advocate for environmental and social justice issues when her local community became a target of the expansive logistics industry and pollution-generating facilities began to encroach upon her residential area. She has worked to address environmental hazards, diesel emission exposure, and elevated levels of pollution as a direct cause of chronic illness. What began as a small local fight to ensure the welfare of local residents was taken into consideration by governmental decision makers within the context of land use decisions turned into an enduring commitment to promoting environmental justice. She has walked and lobbied within the halls of the California State Capitol, advocating for more transparency and urging elected officials to invest in the most disenfranchised residents and communities in California.
“It was a great honor and a very big blessing for me to received this award,” said Rocha. “I also fee it is a win for my community, as well. Our concerned Neighbors of Bloomington work really hard to fight the poor land use decisions our leaders are making. This ward brings light to my community and sends a message that we will continue to fight, and our voices will be heard.”