Eduardo Zelaya

Virginia Organizing Director

Eduardo Zelaya, a native Salvadoran, was on his path as a professional football soccer player and studying architecture in El Salvador, but his future was in Virginia.

As CASA’s Virginia organizing director, Eduardo has been successful in pioneering social justice campaigns for immigrant rights, community development, housing, education justice, labor, and workers rights. This Arlington County resident planned and implemented popular mobilizations to the General Assembly, which led to tremendous victories like drivers licenses for all in 2019. Eduardo manages a team of Census promoters in Fairfax County, an area which for the 2020 Census reported unprecedented response rates. He forms and trains community member-led teams to be the champions of their own priorities and advocates of their own liberation in the Eastern Shore, Hampton Roads, Fairfax County and Winchester. He also leads CASA’s temporary protected status (TPS) efforts at federal level.

He first joined CASA as a promoter mobilizing Virginians to the national immigration reform march in 2013, the birth of CASA in Virginia. A year later he was promoted to community organizer, and as such he led and formed multiple groups of community members and structured them as committees that are the main foundation of the social organization in Virginia for CASA. He also led and supported drivers licenses for all, minimum wage increase, in-state tuition for undocumented students, and increasing the language learners funding policies in the Virginia General Assembly.

He is currently specializing in Leadership Principles and Management Essentials at Harvard Business School. Always a proponent of health, he is currently bodybuilder competitor as the primary athlete with IFBB Pro Bodybuilder Yohnnie Shambourger who is a former member of the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness for the state of Maryland.

He immigrated to the United States in 2010, and he became a US citizen in 2017. He studied English as a Second Language at the Columbia Heights Education Campus in Washington DC and played football professionally before joining CASA. All in all, an advocate for better lives, Eduardo Zelaya continues to fight for a better future for immigrant families in Virginia.