Having grown up in a ranching family in Tucumari NM, López moved to Santa Fe and started work at the Community Law Center on San Francisco St. in 1973. During the time she worked at the Center, she developed her paralegal skills on the job and at the UNM Law School. She worked with the law center’s legal team in cases involving civil rights, Labor Unions, police violence, medical malpractice, water and land issues. As a member of the National Lawyers Guild, she traveled to Cuba in 1974. López served on the Santa Fe School Board for 2 terms. She worked in health education and Indian education, (NITI). Working for the City of Santa Fe in the David Coss (mayor) administration, she also participated in the Living Wage Network, the City of Santa Fe Immigration Committee, and numerous educational, immigration, and social justice initiatives in Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico.
The Working People's History of New Mexico Project (WPHNM) is an oral labor history project created to gather the labor stories of working people in New Mexico. While part of the interviews focus on the specific jobs that the interviewees performed, the interviews also explore labor-management relations as well as union, workers council, and social activism participation. The interviews contain information about family and social relationships and offer themes of social and historical interest in New Mexico and the US.