UFW pioneers Dolores Huerta and Richard Chavez will speak Tuesday, March 29, on campus as part of California State University, Fresno’s celebration of Cesar E. Chavez’s legacy.
The Chavez celebration begins Friday, March 25, and concludes with the Chavez state holiday on Thursday, March 31, when the campus is closed.
Huerta and Chavez, who is Cesar Chavez’s younger brother, will participate at the annual garlanding ceremony 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at the monument of the late founder of the United Farm Workers union in the Peace Garden outside the Henry Madden library. They will speak at approximately 12:30.
Other university events, all free and open to the public, are:
- The Cesar Chavez Education Conference on Friday and Saturday, March 25-26, “Literacy, Early Education and Educational Policy,” at the Satellite Student Union, including screenings “August to June” and “Scapegoat on a Pendulum.”
- A roundtable conference at 2 p.m. Friday, March 25, at the Smittcamp Alumni House, where conference participating researchers and authors will discuss practices for bilingual children and the role policymakers.
- A blood drive on campus (9 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday, March 28), sponsored by the College Assistance Migrant Program and the Central California Blood Center. A bloodmobile by the Satellite Student Union will encourage Latino university students to donate blood in memory of Chavez’s commitment to improving farmworkers’ quality of life.
- A bilingual Poetry Night Club Austral at 5:30 p.m. March 28, in the Pit on the lower level of the University Student Union.
The garlanding ceremony will include performances by a local mariachi and Los Danzantes de Aztlán of the Chicano and Latin American Studies Department.
After Huerta and Chavez speak, the traditional garland will be placed on the Chavez monument and participants will line up to lay flowers at the base. The flowers are sponsored by Trabajadores de La Raza, a Fresno State student group, and Associated Students Inc., and are purchased from the Fresno State Floral Lab.
Huerta was a co-founder of the United Farm Workers and is the president of the Dolores Huerta Foundation. As a well-known community organizer and social activist, she has advocated for societal issues for more than 50 years.
Huerta, a former University of California regent, has earned 11 honorary doctorates from universities throughout the United States and numerous awards from a broad variety of organizations for her humanitarian work.
Richard Chavez worked as a full-time organizer for the union alongside his brother and was its third elected vice president. He is credited with designing the iconic eagle and his brother with choosing the black and red color scheme that identifies the union to this day.
He currently serves on the board of the Cesar E. Chavez Foundation and, in retirement, is active with speaking engagements on behalf of the foundation and the union.
(University Communications news intern Christy Patron contributed to this copy).