Maria Paula Vargas is an operations associate at VS Strategies based in Denver. She is a passionate human rights advocate who draws on her experiences in the nonprofit and business sectors to support the firm's work to advance sensible and compassionate drug policies.

After graduating cum laude from Aurora University with a bachelor's degree in social work, Maria Paula began her career in the nonprofit sector, championing mental health, humanitarian services, and substance abuse counseling. She served as an intern at the Gateway Foundation, where she led drug education groups in the adolescent intensive outpatient program. This experience emboldened her to volunteer for AmeriCorps in Alamosa, Colorado, where she served as a case manager in the La Puente Homeless Shelter and its Crisis Prevention Resources office. 

Maria Paula brought her talent for managing human resources to the business sector, where she provided companies with operational support and management to improve their efficiency and effectiveness in meeting client needs.