About this Blog

Stories flow from conversations. Here Jaime Gonzalez, Henry Lacayo, and Kenneth Burt visit in Los Angeles. Gonzalez chaired he Los Angeles CIO Council’s civil rights committee at the time of the Zoot Suite Riots in 1943. Lacayo was an advisory board member in the John F. Kennedy administration. He served as the sole Latino on Jimmy Carter’s transition team in 1980, a first for the Spanish speaking community.

This blog is dedicated to sharing information related to Latino political history, starting in the 1930s. The buttons in the masthead reflect my interest in breakthrough Latino candidacies, Latinos in presidential politics, and the use of unions to politically empower and to influence elections and public policy.

My passion for the birth and development of Latino politics has led to a book, The Search for a Civic Voice: California Latino Politics, chapters in five anthologies, and numerous articles in academic journals, the popular press, and online. Speaking opportunities and archival research have literally taken me from California to New York, Minnesota to Texas. The result is a desire to better understand the early political development of—and the interconnectedness between—Puerto Ricans, Cuban Americans, Mexican Americans, and other Latinos.

This passion for history has fostered and nurtured numerous relationships. This network includes university professors, leaders from the world of politics and labor, retirees, and the children of political pioneers. We have shared conversations at conferences and conventions, in living rooms, and through emails.

This blog is designed to facilitate this ongoing conversation and the sharing of information. It is also designed to capture and preserve gems of yesteryear. To this end, I will regularly post stories relative to interesting individuals and groups, as well as new books. There will be occasional guest posts.

Remember that your comments, reactions and insights are encouraged. Please share your own stories and images of artifacts such as buttons and flyers from grandma’s attic.

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