“Because everyone deserves to be treated with respect and dignity.”
Diversity Trainer, Civil Rights Activist, Nonprofit Leader
Lori Saroya brings a deep, personal commitment and passion for empowering communities and creating a just, equitable society. She has spent her entire career working to ensure that everyone is treated with the respect and dignity they deserve.
Lori is committed to service and community. She is the Vice-Chair of the Anoka County DFL and serves on the Blaine Charter Commission. Previously, Lori served on the Minnesota Judicial Branch Committee for Equality and Justice, St. Paul Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity Commission, Minnesota Council of Nonprofits Board of Directors, and the Alumni Board of Mitchell Hamline School of Law.
In 2007, Lori identified a need in the community and founded a legal services nonprofit organization that assists Minnesotans experiencing racial, religious, and ethnic discrimination. She served as the organization’s executive director for 8 years and led its efforts to handle approximately 200 cases each year, including employment discrimination, school bullying and harassment, land use opposition, hate crimes and vandalism, profiling, and extra-judicial exile.
She launched a free legal clinic, created a corporate training program to help businesses practice inclusivity, founded a civic engagement leadership program that provides youth opportunities such as a mock student legislature, and led outreach efforts, including creating community coalitions and organizational partnerships. Under her leadership, the nonprofit received numerous awards and recognitions, including the Difference Makers Award from the American Bar Association and the Nonprofit Mission and Excellence Award from the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits.
Some of Lori's awards and recognitions include a Congressional Tribute, St. Catherine University Alumni Award, and the Minnesota Governor's Distinguished Service Award. She was named one of the Ten Outstanding Young Minnesotans by the Minnesota Jaycees and featured in MinnPost’s Top Young Professionals series.
Lori received her undergraduate degree from St. Catherine University and Juris Doctor from Mitchell Hamline School of Law. She is a 2014 Archibald Bush Foundation Fellow. Lori was a 2021 New Leaders Council Fellow and was endorsed by the Progressive Talent Pipeline.