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LULAC Unveils 2024 Hall Of Fame Honorees

Washington, DC – The League of United Latin American Citizens announces the 2024 LULAC Hall of Fame inductees. The organization bestows honor upon individuals whose lives in LULAC exemplify the highest commitment and actions to support civil rights and civic participation. "It is my distinct honor and privilege as national president to recognize these historic figures in LULAC," says Domingo Garcia. "Each of their lives centered on selfless dedication to others, and their generous spirit lives on through their legacies. We welcome them with respect and gratitude," he adds.

John J. Herrera was a pioneering civil rights advocate who significantly impacted the Latino community. He persuaded President John F. Kennedy to address the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) in Houston on November 21, 1963, marking the first instance of a sitting president speaking to a Latino group. Herrera's efforts were instrumental in promoting inclusivity and representation.

His legal expertise was evident in landmark cases like Delgado vs. Bastrop Independent School District and Pete Hernández vs. Texas, which dismantled segregation and established constitutional rights for Hispanics. As a tireless organizer, Herrera championed unions, addressed civic organizations, and fought discriminatory practices, notably advocating for Hispanic municipal employees in the 1930s.

In 1939, Herrera revived LULAC Council 60 and expanded LULAC councils across Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, empowering the Latino community locally and nationally. He served as LULAC national president from 1952 to 1953 and later as National LULAC legal advisor from the 1960s to 1977. His work with the American G.I. Forum highlighted his commitment to civil rights through various campaigns and clubs and a lifetime in the fight for civil rights.

Alfred J. Hernández, Sr. exemplified resilience and leadership within LULAC. Born in Mexico City in 1917, his family fled to the United States due to the Mexican Revolution. Confronting segregation early on, Hernández founded El Club Tenochtitlán to advocate for recreational opportunities and enhance the Mexican community's image.

During WWII, Hernández served in the military, and his linguistic and technical skills earned him promotions and U.S. citizenship. After the war, he overcame language barriers to become an attorney and establish a successful law practice in 1953. Later, Hernandez served as a judge in the Houston Municipal Courts for ten years and held numerous positions in Harris County Criminal Courts of Law and Juvenile Courts. He thrived in LULAC, empowering youth and helping to secure Houston's first Mexican-American police officer in 1950.

As LULAC national president from 1965 to 1967, he helped create the Little School of the 400, which inspired President Lyndon B. Johnson's Head Start Program. He combated discrimination at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and organized the 1966 farmworkers' march. Also, he was a founder and chaired SER - Jobs for Progress Inc., championing training and job opportunities.

Felix Tijerina exemplified perseverance and dedication, rising from the son of humble farmworkers to a renowned restaurateur, civic leader, and philanthropist. In 1928, he launched his entrepreneurial journey by opening his first restaurant, the Mexican Inn, eventually expanding to four locations in Houston. He served as LULAC's national president from 1956 to 1960.

Tijerina's most significant achievement was founding the Little School of the 400, a program to address the educational needs of Spanish-speaking preschoolers. His advocacy, financial support, and strategic collaborations with state leaders revolutionized early childhood education, as demonstrated by the successful pilot program in Ganado, Texas.

A staunch advocate for the Mexican community, Tijerina fought for citizenship rights and supported cultural organizations, emphasizing his commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive society. His civic work, including the Houston Housing Authority chair, earned him a gold medal from the Mexican government. Today, the Tijerina Foundation Scholarship lives on, and his vision and dedication continue to benefit generations, a hallmark of a life well lived in civic service.

Alice Dickerson Montemayor made remarkable contributions to LULAC and championed the rights of Hispanic women, leaving an indelible mark on our community and organization. Joining LULAC in the 1930s as part of Council #9 in Laredo, Texas, she became the first woman elected Second National Vice President General in 1937, highlighting the indispensable role of women in LULAC's history.

A trailblazer for gender equality, Montemayor's essay "Son Muy Hombres" challenged traditional gender roles and emphasized the importance of women's contributions to social and political activism. Her writings and speeches empowered many Hispanic women to assume leadership roles, strengthening the organization's foundation.

Montemayor tirelessly worked to improve educational opportunities for Hispanic youth, recognizing education as an essential driver for social mobility and empowerment. Her leadership exemplified dedication, courage, and vision. Her story is a powerful reminder of the impact one individual can have in the fight for equality and justice.

"In curating the accounts of these individuals, I am struck by how they lived their lives to the fullest, making every moment count for the good of others," says David Contreras, LULAC national historian. "They stood tall among their peers, yet their humility, praise, and support of fellow LULAC members is an enduring lesson for us. True greatness came, not because of a spotlight or attention on themselves, but in doing what they believed in," he adds.



About League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC)

The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest Hispanic civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 535 Councils and 145,000 members across the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services, and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting the critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit