Dior Vargas is a Latina Feminist Mental Health Activist. She is the creator of the People of Color and Mental Illness Photo Project, a response to the invisibility of people of color in the media representation of mental illness. Dior tours the country giving keynotes, hosting workshops, and speaking on panels. Her work and insight have been covered in media outlets such as Forbes, Newsweek, NBC News Latino, and The Guardian. Dior is the recipient of numerous awards including, The White House Champion of Change for Disability Advocacy Across Generations, a Voices of the Year honoree under the Impact category at #BlogHer15: Experts among Us Conference, and the 2015 Alternatives Conference Cookie Gant and Bill Compton LGBTQI Leadership Award. She is also a Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame Inductee. She was listed as one of the 15 Remarkable Women of Color Who Rocked 2015 in Colorlines. Dior has a B.A. in the Study of Women and Gender from Smith College and has an M.S. in Publishing from Pace University. She is working towards a Master of Public Health at NYU's College of Global Public Health. She is a native New Yorker and currently lives in New York City.
Dior is a former volunteer crisis counselor for Crisis Text Line. She is also a former member of NAMI - NYC Metro’s Young Professionals Advisory Board and a member of the Third Wave Legacy Council. She is a former co-facilitator for the Young Adult Support Group at NAMI-NYC Metro. She was chosen as a member of the 2014 class of the Women's Media Center's media training program, Progressive Women's Voices. In the fall of 2013, she was an Advisory Board Member of a project by Suzanne Lacy called "Between the Door and the Street". In January 2013, she was on a panel entitled, "Young Feminists and Activism Today", organized by Barnard College's Center for Research on Women. She was a steering committee member of the New York Chapter of National Women's Liberation. There she took part in the flash mobs in various pharmacies in the city because of the many restrictions that were/still are placed on the morning after pill.
In 2012, Dior organized the first Feminist General Assembly in New York City with Women Occupying Wall Street. She was involved in Occupy the Stage, which was created by Occupy Wall Street and The Forum Project. She worked on a dialogic performance series using forum theatre to discuss the issues of oppression that are important to the Occupy movement. She underwent board member training in a program from the Stonewall Community Foundation called Out in Front NY. She has interned for The Feminist Press and for Gloria Feldt, former CEO and president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. She is a proud Feminist Latina and wants to remove the stigma of mental illness in the Latinx community. She wants to work with other women of color feminists to advance their community as a whole.