Alex Mijares speaks to PBS Newshour

Alex Mijares: Environmental Justice Warrior

We are so proud of 2017 Organizer-in-Training Alex Mijares, who is now advocating in our community and across the country for a safer, healthier environment. In this national PBS Newshour special on Oregon’s diesel exhaust problem, he talks about living in low-income housing in […]

Four organizers of color stand in the photo booth at Voices 2017. Signs say "Community Resilience," "We Heart OPAL" and "RESIST"

Announcing the Transit Union Fellowship

For the past seven years OPAL has conducted Organizers In Training (OIT). This program has produced a number of organizers who have gone on to do amazing work in the Social Justice movement. We are proud of the work we have accomplished through OIT. In […]

Graphic of three black hands clenched in fists around the cord that is used to request that the bus stop.In the background, a bus window.

Big News! Year-Round Training Is Coming!

We’re excited to announce a major shift in how OPAL builds power for transit riders through our Bus Riders Unite membership program! In previous years, OPAL and BRU brought together a cohort each summer in the Organizers-in-Training program, a ten-week intensive that gave new […]

Alex Mijares and his two nieces.

Meet Alex Mijares: Spiritual Revolutionary

Hello, my name is Alex Mario Mijares. I grew up in a rough environment in San Fernando Valley, California. My neighborhoods were diverse in race & class. Communities there were, and still are today, experiencing issues with affordable housing, illnesses, jobs, drugs, and gang […]

Tristan stands in front of the liquor bottles at his day job bartending.

Meet Tristan: “I Now Know Who I Am”

My name is Tristan and I am a member of OPAL’s Organizers-in-Training cohort this summer. I’ve always been perplexed by the question, “Where are you from?” My family were wanderers. My parents were both in the military. Strictly speaking I was born in North […]

Julie Reardon and her family and dog.

Julie Reardon: Mother, Fighter, Punk

By Julie Reardon, Organizer-In-Training I was born and raised in a suburb outside of Riverside, California to a Mexican mother and Irish-German father with three siblings. As a child of the 80’s, I thrived on pop-culture, climbing trees with a book in hand and […]

Haley stands in front of a red all in a black dress.

Haley’s OPAL Story

OPAL is a transformative place, not just for our members but also for those who volunteer and intern with us. Haley Bosse spent ten weeks with OPAL this summer, and she loved being here. We asked Haley to share her thoughts on her time with us, […]

Marisol and two additional young women pose for a photograph.

Marisol Ceballos: “I Owe It To My Communities”

I’m in this for my family. My mom and her 9 siblings grew up working in the fields. They have been exposed to all kinds of pesticides. The women suffered miscarriages. My family works in factories, in grocery stores. Their wages barely cover the […]

The BRU logo, a bus with people atop it. The bus reads "BRU" and the logo says "Bus Riders Unite!"

BRU Update – August 8th, 2017

By Tristan, Organizer-In-Training Over the past few weeks, Bus Riders Unite members, Organizers-in-Training, and OPAL staff have been working hard on a number of campaigns related to creating an inclusive and equitable transit system. In June and July we attended TriMet board meetings, both […]


Voices 2017: An Incredible Display of Unity

Tuesday night OPAL’s closest family of supporters and allies turned out for Voices of A People’s History: Nothing About Us Without Us. And it was amazing. The unity and support in the room was tangible from the moment that supporters started to trickle in […]