Cipriana Jurado Herrera is co-founder of Defensora de Derechos Humanos, a human rights organization based in Juarez. The organization focuses on upholding the labor rights of maquiladora (factory) workers, speaking out on behalf of the victims of state repression, and bringing attention to the cases of individuals who have gone missing and who have been forcibly disappeared.
Ms. Jurado has been an activist for over twenty years. She arrived in Juarez at age 14 to work in the maquiladoras. In the late 1980s she co-founded Centro de Investigaciones y Solidaridad Obrera (Center for Investigation and Worker Solidarity), and in 1990 she became its director. Much of her work has centered on complaints, victimization, kidnappings, and disappearances related to the militarization of northern Mexico and the abuses and brutality carried out by the Mexican military. With the help of Amnesty International, she obtained a visa to come to the United States. In 2011 she won her bid for political asylum, and currently lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.