Founded in 1973, PFLAG is the first and largest organization dedicated to supporting, educating, and advocating for LGBTQ+ people and their families. PFLAG’s network of hundreds of chapters and more than 325,000 members and supporters works to create a caring, just, and affirming world for LGBTQ+ people and those who love them.
Emily Zelaya (she/her) is proud to be Queer and Latin American. At a young age, she immigrated to the Bay Area from her homeland of beautiful Nicaragua. She is grateful to continue her work with PFLAG as the Mid-Pacific Regional Director. As Regional Director, her goal is to support and strengthen chapters, identify emerging leaders, and expand membership diversity.
In 2013, Emily began her involvement with PFLAG as a board member with PFLAG Sacramento. She served as chapter president for four years. Her experience working with LGBTQ+ communities stems back to her coming out in 1999 after graduating from UC Davis. She was asked to be the adult advisor for Sacramento’s only queer youth group at the time. Over the course of 12 years, she had the privilege of meeting hundreds of young queer adults and watching them blossom.
Emily has also served on the board for the Sacramento International LGBTQ Film Festival, led mental health speakers’ bureaus, worked on statewide campaigns for suicide prevention, organized immigrant communities for affordable housing, and until recently, was the Director of Programs at the Sacramento LGBT Community Center.
A culmination of life experiences and higher education have given Emily the drive to raise awareness of intersectional identities. Currently, she is a Program Manager at a nonprofit organization that serves refugees, immigrants, and survivors of human trafficking.
She is happily married to her wife, Haley and they both love to rescue senior dogs, travel internationally, and enjoy wine-tasting and Latin dancing.