Co-founder of United Farm Workers union to talk at WSU Sept. 30

11:25:50 AM CDT - Friday, September 23, 2005

Dolores Huerta, who along with activist Cesar Chavez organized farm workers in California in the 1960s, will give a free public lecture, "Daily Bread: The Farm Worker's Struggle" at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30, at the Eugene M. Hughes Metropolitan Complex.

The 75-year-old Huerta began her career as a teacher, but soon was frustrated by seeing farm worker children coming to class hungry and in need of shoes. Thinking she could do more by organizing their parents, Huerta became a community activist and lobbyist.

In the 1960s, she started working with Cesar Chavez to begin the National Farm Workers Association, the predecessor to the United Farm Workers of America union. She negotiated contracts and other benefits for the farm workers, and she directed boycotts of grapes, lettuce and Gallo wines, which brought about the California Agricultural Labor Relations Act of 1975.

Dolores Huerta
Dolores Huerta
Huerta has garnered several honors and awards for her activism, including induction into the National Women's Hall of Fame in 1993, the Ellis Island Medal of Freedom, the American Civil Liberties Union Roger Baldwin Medal of Liberty Award and being named the Ladies Home Journal's 100 Most Important Women of the 21st Century and one of three Ms. Magazine's Women of the Year in 1998.

WSU's Office of Multicultural Affairs is hosting the lecture, along with the co-sponsors of WSU's Center for Women's Studies and the Service Employees International Union Local 513. WSU's Student Government Association is providing special funding.

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