The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) was founded in 1929 and is our nation’s oldest Hispanic Civil Rights organization. LULAC was created at a time in our country’s history when Hispanics were denied basic civil and human rights, despite their contributions to American society. The founders of LULAC created an organization that empowers its members to create and develop opportunities in areas where they are needed most: education, housing, employment, health, civil rights and economic advancement.
This year LULAC took its 89th Annual Convention and Exposition to the Grand Canyon State of Phoenix, Arizona. Momentum built rapidly throughout the week’s events, commencing with the exciting standing-room-only ribbon cutting ceremony for the Exposition. Our theme, ‘Together We Rise: Igniting Activism to Transform Communities’ rang true resoundingly in every event and feature of the program. Attendees from throughout the nation and Puerto Rico met, engaged in dialogue, collected resources, and emerged stronger and galvanized for action. This is precisely LULAC’s commitment to the people we serve and why gatherings like this enable us to further awaken a movement and empower all who participate.
Among the event’s highlights were the influential voices participating as keynote speakers for a wide-range of audiences. Broadcast Journalist Ana Navarro shared her powerful personal truth during the Women’s Lideres Luncheon using her humor and candor. Her energy filled a room of Mujeres and left a lasting impression. Former NASA Astronaut Jose Hernandez reminded our Youth, “Se vale soñar en grande,” a message too often forgotten. May LULAC Youth carry forth his message as they reach for the stars in their lives. Vice President Joe Biden brought us to the pinnacle of our 89th Annual Convention and Exposition with his timely remarks. He challenged us to become empowered to act — empowered at the poles, empowered in running for office and empowered in rising together as one. The Vice President reminded us that more battles are ahead and as allies we can advance together.
Now, we turn our sights on LULAC’s upcoming 90th Anniversary and our course is set for reaching new frontiers. At the helm, two dedicated leaders with a fresh and transformative vision. CEO Sindy Benavides and National President Domingo Garcia. Their leadership ensures LULAC makes the next decade the most exciting in its first century of service. We shall continue the good fight for the dignity and civil rights of our community. Together we will rise to the challenge to fight against adversity and build upon the foundation of equity the men and women of LULAC have been bravely and proudly protecting since 1929.