Lookout Santa Cruz – 21 for ‘21: For Juan Morales-Rocha, bridging the digital divide was personal

Juan Morales-Rocha helped lay the groundwork for a project seeking to bridge Santa Cruz County’s digital divide.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)


The first time he tried to restore reliable internet to the farmworker housing where he was raised in Watsonville, Juan Morales-Rocha ran into a dead end.

“I was calling people, trying to connect the dots — like, who would be the right person to call?” he said. “No results, basically, because I guess it wasn’t as important, right?”

That was April 2019, a year before the COVID-19 pandemic pushed so much of school, work and life behind a computer screen….

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