Karol Ruiz

Alderman, Town of Dover

Karol Yorlany Ruiz is a public servant, an elected official, a community organizer, an immigrant justice advocate, a racial justice advocate, and a mental health attorney. She served on the Dover Board of Education for two terms, from 2017 until 2022. She is the former Co-President of the Wind of the Spirit Immigrant Resource Center, a non-partisan, non-profit, faith-based organization that advocates for immigrant justice and human rights. She continues to volunteer with Wind of the Spirit as an advocate for safe and affordable housing.

Prior to becoming an attorney and an elected official, Karol lived through the many obstacles of life as an undocumented immigrant, first-generation college student, and single mother in the working-class immigrant community of Dover, New Jersey. Originally from Colombia, descendant from Indigenous, European, and African ancestors, she is passionate about ensuring access to justice and resources for all.

Karol is a regular panelist and keynote speaker on the topics of migration, Latinx culture, immigration law and education at local universities, religious institutions, and non-profit organizations. Notably, she served as the Keynote Speaker for the Rutgers University Latin American Womyn’s Organization and was a panelist for the Princeton University “Seeking Refuge: Faith-Based Approaches to Forced Migration” Conference. You may also find her coleading marches, teach-ins, and rallies, including the Women’s March that drew 10,000 attendants in 2018, and the Morris County 2020 Racial Justice Summer Series of Teach-Ins and marches.

Karol identifies as a Latina Feminist Guerrera and a formerly undocumented immigrant. On January 1, 2023, Karol took the oath to serve the Town of Dover as the First Latina elected to the Board of Aldermen, representing the Third Ward.