On the Day of the Dead, Mexican and Latin American cultures celebrate life by remembering those who have passed. Today, we celebrate and remember one of the founders of the Farmworker Association of Florida: Everardo Cortez.
july 23, 1929 – november 5, 2014
Everardo Cortez started out as an activist in Tamaulipas, Mexico, in the 1950s. He held the government to its promise to give land to small farmers.
One of the founders of FWAF
When he came to the United States in the 1970s to find work, Everardo got involved with migrant farmworker organizations. He helped form the Farmworker Association of Florida (FWAF) in 1983. In these early years, FWAF was dedicated to improving housing, wages and working conditions for its farmworker members and their communities. The members were mainly Mexican, Central American, Haitian and African American.
A leader for over 20 years
Everardo has played key leadership roles in all aspects of the organization for over 20 years: training new leaders, advocating at the state capitol, creating a community health clinic and founding ‘PEP Labor Crews’, a citrus harvesting cooperative. FWAF coordinator Nezahualcoyotl Xiuhtecutli: “We honor Everardo Cortez by remembering the mark he left on FWAF and the farmworker movement during his time among us. RIP.”