United Farm Workers celebrates 50 years of organizing

Cesar Chavez Anniversary

Anonymous/AP

In this Sept. 16, 1975 file photo, head of the United Farm Workers Union Cesar Chavez speaks at the headquarters for the state Agriculture Labor Relations Board board to call for the resignation of Walter Kintz, legal counsel for the board, in Sacramento, California. Chavez was born near Yuma, Arizona on March 31, 1927 and died in 1993.

The United Farm Workers Union marks its 50th anniversary this weekend in Bakersfield. Founded in 1962 by Dolores Huerta and the late Cesar Chavez, this weekend’s convention will honor the UFW's pioneers who led various strikes and boycotts in the ‘60s.

Speakers include Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and labor leader Maria Elena Durazo. Also on hand will be Luis Valdez, whose El Teatro Campesino was an integral part of the union’s early days.

Dolores Huerta was recently named a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Cesar Chavez, who died in 1993 at the age of 66, is the subject of a feature film that is currently in production.

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