Ohio & Michigan's Oldest and Largest Latino Newspaper

Since 1989




    media kit    ad specs    classified ad rates    about us    contact us


César Chávez Humanitarian Dinner, March 27, 2008 Address given by Sonia Troche, Executive Director of Adelante, Inc.


Buenas Noches, Bienvenidos, and thank you for taking the time to join us, as we celebrate the lifetime achievement and humanitarian service of a distinguished Latina member of our community.


You will agree with me when I say that past recipients like Dolores Rodríguez, Sue Campos, Baldemar Velásquez, and Rudy Lira epitomize the true spirit of this award.

Sonia Troche and Ruth Garcia


Tonight, one more deserving member of our community will join this fine group. These recipients of the César Chávez Humanitarian Award serve as a source of inspiration and pride for those youth who will be acknowledged this evening and those of us whom have benefited from their efforts and struggles.


As I sat down to meet with tonight’s Humanitarian Awards recipient, in her home, I was pleasantly surprised to learn of the González family roots and history in México and Northwest Ohio. I smiled to think that her family went from Pancho Villa to Carty Finkbeiner.


After the meeting, I reflected on what she had said and was immediately taken aback to think her life’s work to overcome the struggles of language differences, community acceptance, economic and civil injustice, under-education, and in some cases lack of education, under representation in government, denial of social and basic services, is being threatened fifty years later.


You heard me correctly; I am not here tonight to talk about Adelante’s Success Stories; while I would love to give you an overview of Adelante’s accomplishments in this past year and speak of the great work that the staff of Adelante does on a daily basis. 


Ruth Gonzalez de Garcia

Tonight I speak with great concern about how the progress of the Latino Community is being threatened locally, at the State and National level. ¿Como puede Adelante?


How can Adelante, The Latino Resource Center, its leadership and the leadership of our community claim accomplishment of hers and that of past Humanitarian Award recipient’s dreams when the cornerstones of their effort have begun to crack.


When Our Latino children graduate Our high schools with high academic achievement yet are denied the opportunity to realize their dreams of going to college with the aid of scholarships to area universities and colleges, the wall is cracking;


When our children are not proficient in math, language arts, science by third grade and are destined to drop out of high school, our wall is cracking;


The wall is cracking
When we fail to advocate for our Latino brothers and sisters who live in fear of deportation and are at the peril of economic injustice, the wall is cracking;


When we fail to receive or participate in workforce development training and programs in the midst of high unemployment and under-employment, the wall is cracking;


When we fail to support childbearing Latina women who don’t have access to quality health care, the wall is cracking;


When we remain silent as our local governmental leaders fail to support workplace diversity by recruiting and promoting Latinos, the wall is cracking;

Robert Torres, Sonia y hijas y Marcy Kaptur

When Latino representation in city, county and state government, and representation that advocates for Our issues is non-existent, the wall is cracking.


Several years ago, our good friend and former Blade writer Clyde Hughes wrote an expose on the rise of the Latino community in Northwest Ohio. In the article our Latino community and its leaders spoke of laying the cornerstone to better times for Latinos in Northwest Ohio. 


The reality is that many of those leaders have gone on to other pursuits. Yet, there has been no one to replace them. Remember when we had a Council President, City Council member, Director of Latino Affairs, Executive Officer to the Mayor, and I so forth… “Hermanos y Hermanas”, Mi Gente, long gone are those days.


The cornerstone they represented must now be replaced by the efforts of you and I.

Adelante, The Latino Family Resource Center can not fight these struggles alone. As we reflect on the events of today and the accomplishments of those who have come before us, let us honor their efforts by rededicating ourselves to addressing activism.


If César Chávez was here today, ¿Que diria? What would he do? 


I never met him, but I would have to believe that he would tell us to challenge the system and those who look to deny us the American Dream.


If our schools don’t understand our children, recruit Latino teachers and administrators; then challenge Latino board members to advocate sound and responsible policies.

Victor Leandry and Sonia Troche

If healthcare is not accessible; advocate and demand for Latino representation on hospital boards and county health commissions.


When our immigrant families are the target of hate-seeded policy; let’s make those policymakers accountable for their votes. When those candidates come around our Latino neighbourhoods, our fiestas and festivals, let’s hold them accountable for the commitments that they make in supporting the advancement of issues in our community.

Last, when local, state & federal dollars are disbursed to projects in our community, let us make a commitment to advocate representation on the funding committee and to be present at those public hearings and allocation process. 

In doing this, we keep the legacy of César Chávez his work, accomplishments and those that worked along side him, alive.


Yes, the wall may appear worn, worn of the struggles and the apathy; yes, the task may seem insurmountable at times since there are many cracks to repair. 

Marcy Kaptur  and flag


But fifty years ago a Mexican family from México and many others like them dared to dream a different life for their children. They set a course for Northwest Ohio and worked the fields, worked the railroads, worked the steel mills, and worked the shipyards.


They are the original builders of our foundation, laying the cornerstone of opportunity for you and me. We must and we will rebuild that foundation, even if it takes us brick by brick.


We do it now so that our children, grandchildren will not have to overcome those same issues.


Thank you and God bless.



Claudia Annoni, Melissa Avalos and Guiselle Mendoza

Josh Flores Abuelita Olivia


Monica Morales

Fred y esposa y Ruth


Marcy Kaptur and Ruth Garcia

Lilleana Victor Ezra





Web laprensa





«Tinta con sabor»     Ink with flavor!



Spanglish Weekly/Semanal

Your reliable source for current Latino news and events with English and Spanish articles.
Contact us at [email protected] or call (419) 870-6565



Culturas Publication, Inc. d.b.a. La Prensa Newspaper

© Copyrighted by  Culturas Publication, Inc. 2008