Dolores Huerta, who worked alongside Cesar Chavez to organize farm workers in California and today remains one of the living icons of the Civil Rights movement, will speak about the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at the fourteenth annual UVSC Commemoration in King's honor.
Huerta, co-founder with Chavez of the United Farm Workers, will deliver the Commemoration's keynote speech on January 15, 2008, at 10:00 a.m. in the Ragan Theater.
Beyond being a noted labor leader, Huerta has been recognized as a leading figure in the Civil Rights movement, having involved herself in issues such as voter registration, immigration, and women's rights. She frequently practices peaceful resistance as advocated by Rev. King, amassing over twenty arrests due to her involvement in non-violent protests. Now in her seventies, Huerta continues to be active in fighting for equal rights for all: the Southern Poverty Law Center wrote in 2006 that she "has the same energy she had working alongside labor activist Cesar Chavez."
Huerta was inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame, and was honored by the California State Senate with its Outstanding Labor Leader Award. She has also received the Roger Baldwin Medal of Liberty Award presented by the American Civil Liberties Union, the United States Presidential Eleanor D. Roosevelt Human Rights Award.
Her keynote address will be followed at 11:30 a.m. by a panel on current Civil Rights issues, also at the Ragan Theater, in which Huerta will participate.
Holt, an IBM marketing executive turned singer/actor, will also meet with UVSC students and faculty on January 16.
Holt's presentation of Black Boy at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, was positively reviewed by the Washington Post, which described it as an "admirable introduction to Wright's writing and to grave truths about racism and inequity in America."
Marian Jackson was awarded this year's Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration Award for the Advancement of Justice and Human Dignity. Marian is an educator whose work with migrant school children and farm workers brought them hope and assistance, and in doing so she exemplified the principles of Martin Luther King, Jr.