CEO, Human Options
As chief executive officer, Maricela Rios-Faust provides vital leadership, support and vision to the continued growth and success of Human Options. Since 2006, she has capitalized on her 30-year experience working with vulnerable populations and been a key driver in Human Options becoming the most comprehensive domestic violence service provider in Orange County. Her commitment comes from a desire to raise her daughter in a world where relationship violence is not tolerated. Recognized as a leader in the field and nonprofit sector, Maricela joined Blue Shield of California's Board of Trustees in January 2023. She also serves on the board of directors for the Family Violence Appellate Project, OneOC and Orange County’s Continuum of Care governing board. Maricela is a member of the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence. In 2021, she was named one of Orange County’s most influential for her leadership on increasing awareness of impacts of the pandemic on domestic violence survivors. She co-chairs the Orange County Domestic Violence Death Review Team and in 2022 was again named one of Orange County’s most influential for partnering with the death review team and University of California, Irvine to release a decade-long analysis of domestic violence and homicide cases in Orange County.
Maricela received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from California State University, Fullerton in 1996 and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Southern California in 2001. She is a licensed clinical social worker and a master field instructor for USC’s School of Social Work. In 2016, Maricela became a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE), the only accredited, globally recognized certification for fundraising professionals.