On April 25 at the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum, 1852 W. 19th S., there was a Cesar E. Chavez stamp unveiling ceremony.
Akinyinka O. Akinyele, Chicago District Manager, was the stamp dedication official. Joining Akinyele was Lieutenant Gov. Patrick Quinn, State of Illinois; Margaret Blackshere, President, State of Illinois AFL-CIO; Clare Munaña, Trustee, Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum; Julie Chavez, Chairperson, Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum; and, Ald. Daniel Solis, 25th Ward.
SPECIAL GUESTS: Mrs. Robert F. Kennedy, Founder, Robert F. Kennedy Memorial; Paul Chavez, grandson of Cesar E. Chavez; Arturo Rodriguez, President, United Farm Workers of America and son-in-law of Cesar E. Chavez; and Andres F. Irlando, Esq., Executive Director, Cesar E. Chavez Foundation.
Chavez's dream was to create an organization to protect and serve farm workers, whose poverty and disenfranchisement he had shared. In 1962 Chavez resigned from the Community Service Organization to establish the National Farm Workers Association, which later became the United Farm Workers of America.
For more then three decades Chavez led the first successful farm workers union in American history, achieving dignity, respect, fair wages, medical coverage, pension benefits and humane living conditions as well as countless other rights and protections for hundreds of thousands of farm workers. Against previously insurmountable odds, he led successful strikes and boycotts that resulted in the first industry-wide labor contracts in the history of American agriculture. His union's efforts brought about the passage of the groundbreaking 1975 California Agricultural Labor Relations Act to protect farm workers. Today, it remains the only law in the nation that protects the right of farm workers to unionize.