Latino Alumni AssociationStaff

Mercy Willard

Mercy Willard EdD ’21

Executive Director

Mercy Willard was named Executive Director of the USC Latino Alumni Association in 2016.  She joined the Trojan family after having spent 16 years in the nonprofit health sector with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the American Diabetes Association. Her work focused on community partnerships, volunteer management, fundraising, and program development for underserved populations with an emphasis on the Latino community and those living with a disability. She also served as liaison for diversity and inclusion for the West Region.

She earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of California, Los Angeles and a master’s degree in nonprofit management from Regis University. She became a USC alumna in 2021, when she earned her doctorate in Educational Leadership. Her research focused on the impact of academic scholarships on the persistence of first-generation low-income Latino students attending public universities. Mercy is also an alumna of CORO Health Leadership Fellowship Program.

Dolores Sotelo

Dolores Sotelo

Associate Director

Dolores Sotelo oversees the LAA scholarship program and plays a key role in LAA’s annual events. A member of the Trojan Family since 1980, she previously held positions in the USC Office of Admissions and the USC Viterbi School of Engineering Minority Engineering Program. She has also held leadership roles with the USC Latino Forum and the Latino staff support organization, and is active in the University Staff Club.

Sotelo has been honored for her commitment to USC Latino students by the USC Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, the USC Latino Business Student Association, USC Chicanos for Progressive Education and the USC Latina/o Student Assembly. She is an avid Trojan football fan.

Isabel Aranda

Isabel Aranda ’00

Assistant Director

Isabel Aranda manages alumni and student relations, and provides support for fundraising, communications and event planning. Prior to joining LAA, she served as executive/research assistant at a public policy research company. Over the course of her career in the public sector, Aranda has worked as a college advisor at Santa Monica College; a development manager for several Santa Monica-Malibu School District community projects; and as a campaign manager for local city council and board of education candidates.

Aranda received an AA in business administration from Santa Monica College, earned a BS in public policy and management from the USC Price School of Public Policy; and later earned a master in public administration from California State University, Northridge. She also received a graduate certificate in Social Innovation from USC Price School of Public Policy. She is a former LAA scholarship recipient and has served on the LAA Scholarship Committee.

Vivian Sampson

Vivian Sampson

Budget Analyst/Office Manager

Vivian Sampson joined the LAA in 2014. She has nearly 30 years of administrative experience working for national and international corporations, including PricewaterhouseCoopers, LA Care Health Plan and Columbia Pictures.

Sampson earned an associate’s degree in secretarial science from Missouri Southern State College, as well as a BS in business management and a MBA from University of Phoenix.