Bishop Jaime Soto has appointed Miriam Sammartino as executive director of Catholic Charities of Yolo and Solano counties.
Prior to her appointment, Sammartino was a practicing immigration attorney and served as president of the board of Catholic Charities of Yolo-Solano. The social service agency of the bishop of Sacramento in the two counties advances Christ’s mission by providing services to the poor and vulnerable, including family assistance, immigration services, counseling and court-ordered children protective services programs.
“We are called to care for those marginalized by society and left on the outskirts of our society,” Sammartino said. “As an immigrant, I experienced the fear faced by the immigrant community on a daily basis, but I also experienced the generosity, compassion and love by those who saw our value and recognized our human dignity. My life was transformed by the generosity of an immigration attorney and social services who helped me and my family obtain legal status and meet our needs as a family.
“I have always felt a great responsibility to the individuals and families in our community to help them transform their lives so they can thrive in our society. Catholic Charities of Yolo-Solano provides me with an opportunity and avenue to fulfill my responsibility to our community by addressing critical needs, support individual and family sustainability and advocate for social justice.”
Sammartino received her Juris Doctorate from John F. Kennedy University College of Law, where she focused on public interest law and children and families and the law. As an attorney, she volunteered at the Solano Family Justice Center, providing free legal consultation for victims of crime. She holds a bachelor’s degree in microbiology from UC Davis.
Sammartino and her husband are parishioners of Holy Spirit Parish in Fairfield.