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Roxbury, MA
When an illegal eviction left her family homeless, Klare Allen's life as an organizer began. In the early 1990s, she led other homeless mothers to advocate for themselves and take action to change state policies. In 1995, she joined the staff of Alternatives for Community & Environment (ACE) and launched the Roxbury Environmental Justice Project to give young people the tools and capacity to tackle community issues. In 2000, Klare founded the Safety Net, bringing together residents of ten public housing developments in lower Roxbury to fight displacement and pollution. The group has gained significant community control over land use planning and is leading a regional campaign, involving community, labor and peace groups, against Boston University's plans to build a bio-terror research laboratory.


Miami, FL
Wilfredo Bolivar was a leader of the student movement in Venezuela before immigrating to the United States where personal experience with racism and homelessness made him an activist again. In 1989, Willy helped his fellow tenants in Salem, Massachusetts, stop their evictions. He continued as a leader with Essex County Community Organization (ECCO) and later worked on health care issues as an ECCO organizer. Since 1997, he has been an organizer with People Acting for Community Together (PACT), a coalition of congregations, schools and community groups in Dade County, Florida, a majority of whose members are immigrants from Latin America and the Caribbean. Willy has helped PACT's grassroots leaders carry out successful campaigns on education, transportation and immigration.


Gainesville, GA
Faye Bush has been organizing for over 50 years in her hometown of Gainesville, Georgia, taking on every adversary from the Ku Klux Klan to corporations spewing toxic waste. Faye is Executive Director of Newtown Florist Club, an African American community organization originally founded to bring flowers and comfort to families at funerals that has evolved into one of the nation's leading environmental justice organizations. Newtown Florist Club also works on voting rights and school issues; has a strong youth group, Black Teens United for a Future (B-TUFF); and created the New Town Community Land Trust Project that constructs and rehabilitates housing for first-time homebuyers. Recently Faye spearheaded a Black-Brown Alliance bringing together the town's African American community with the new Latino immigrant community.


Glassboro, NJ
Since the early 1970s when he began organizing with the National Ecumenical Movement (PRISA) in Puerto Rico, Nelson Carrasquillo has worked to give those affected by injustice the capacity to make change. Since 1992, he has been General Coordinator of Comite de Apoyo a los Trabajadores Agricolas (CATA), the Farmworkers Support Committee, which is active in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and the Delmarva Peninsula. CATA uses popular education methods to develop proactive farmworker leadership in workplaces and communities addressing issues including environmental justice and immigrant rights. CATA was instrumental in organizing the Kaolin Workers Union, the first group of Pennsylvania mushroom workers to secure a collective bargaining agreement.


Apopka, FL
Everardo Cortez began organizing in Tamulipas, Mexico, in the 1950s, holding the government to its promise to give land to small farmers. Coming to the United States to find work in the 1970s, Everardo got involved with migrant farmworker organizations and helped form the Farmworker Association of Florida (FWAF) in 1983. Dedicated to improving housing, wages and working conditions, FWAF has a multi-racial membership of primarily Mexican, Central American and Haitian workers. Everardo has played key leadership roles in all aspects of the organization for over 20 years, including training new leaders, lobbying at the state capitol, creating a community health clinic and founding PEP Labor Crews, a citrus harvesting cooperative.


New York, NY
A citizen of the Onondaga Nation, Tonya Gonnella Frichner founded the American Indian Law Alliance (AILA) when she graduated from law school in 1989. Her goal was to provide support to her own and other Native American nations striving to preserve their cultures and defend their territorial rights. Over the past 16 years, with Tonya as President, AILA has been a prominent advocate at the international level for self-determination for all Indigenous peoples. It is one of only a handful of Indigenous organizations with Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. In addition to its advocacy and organizing work, AILA provides free legal services to members of the Native American community in the metropolitan New York area.


San Francisco, CA
Daciano Lamparas began organizing in 1972 as a rank and file leader of banana plantation workers in the Philippines and was elected their union president. Working next with a Catholic social action group, he helped organize slum-dwellers to fight for and win legal title to land they had occupied for generations. Targeted by the Marcos dictatorship, Daz settled in California, where he has worked with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) since 1987 and is currently an organizer and trainer with Local 790. Daz has been deeply involved in immigrant rights campaigns, including the union's fight to save the jobs of immigrant baggage screeners terminated in the name of homeland security. He helped form the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA).


Nampa, ID
Raised in a farmworker family, Maria González Mabbutt has been a leader in the fight for justice for Idaho farmworkers for over 20 years. Campaigns she spearheaded won the inclusion of farmworkers in State minimum wage and workers compensation laws. Maria also has been involved in progressive electoral organizing for decades, and under her directorship Idaho Latino Vote doubled the number of registered Latino voters in Idaho in the last four years. In her work with organizations including the Idaho Hispanic Caucus, Mujeres Unidas de Idaho, Idaho Women's Network, United Vision for Idaho and the Idaho Tribal Latino Caucus, Maria stresses grassroots leadership development, especially among Latinas, and bridging boundaries between constituencies.


Los Angeles, CA
Danny Park has been building a progressive force in the Korean community of Los Angeles since he was a college student in the 1980s. As co-founder in 1992 and now executive director of Korean Immigrant Workers Advocate (KIWA), he has helped create a model multi-cultural workers center dedicated to empowering low-wage immigrant workers. The group's Restaurant Workers Justice Campaign set precedents both by uniting Korean and Latino workers and by mounting an industry-wide effort that forced Korea-town restaurants to raise sub-minimum wages and substandard working conditions. While its current campaign focus is on winning living wages for Korean supermarket workers, KIWA also places strong emphasis on building solidarity with other under-represented communities.


San Francisco, CA
Living much of her childhood in Mexico shaped Renee Saucedo's fierce commitment to immigrant rights. An organizer of a nationwide student strike while in law school, she joined the staff of La Raza Centro Legal after passing the bar in 1991. Her recent work there has been as Director of the San Francisco Day Laborers Program helping mostly undocumented, immigrant workers develop their own leadership, establish a hiring hall and a women's collective, raise wage standards and resist police harassment. Renee also worked with the Northern California Coalition for Immigrant Rights and is founder and coordinator of INS Watch, a grassroots coalition that challenges INS abuses and secured passage of a law making San Francisco the nation's first INS Raid Free Zone.

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