Ahead of the 2016 election, we're profiling local voters to find out what issues are most important to them. Just a few days after Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders made his second stop in town, Reno Public Radio's Julia Ritchey caught up with a local political activist who's feeling the Bern.
In a purple sweater with matching eyeshadow, Theresa Navarro is brimming with energy as she make calls at the Bernie Sanders campaign office in Reno. Navarro is a retired political consultant and full-time activist who's lived in Nevada for 45 years.
"Last year I was arrested twice, protesting on immigration," she says, laughing. "I work on immigration, I have for 15 years, so that's a very important issue for me."
The daughter of Mexican immigrants, Navarro says she's involved in a number of other causes and organizations.
She was drawn to the Sanders' campaign after attending a protest in Washington, D.C. to increase the minimum wage. That’s when she noticed the Vermont senator was actually standing in the crowd.
"That really struck me as something that, 'Here's a man — a senator — and he actually was walking with all of us and he spoke," she says. "And I really believe that he is concerned the middle class and lower class and all of us that are struggling."
Navarro has a history of supporting alternative candidates. Before joining Obama's bid in 2008, she backed former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson.
Hillary Clinton still holds a commanding lead over Sanders in polls, but the senator has been adding more staff and opening more office in the state ahead of the Feb. 20 caucus.