The grandson of legendary civil rights and labor movement organizer Cesar Chavez has joined Georgia’s largest grassroots Latino organizing group.

Alejandro Chavez will serve as deputy director of the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials or GALEO, which fosters voting rights, civic engagement, and leadership development within the state’s rapidly growing Latino population.  The 44-year-old Chavez brings extensive political and nonprofit experience to GALEO from working as a political consultant on Democratic political campaigns and progressive issues, such as March On For Voting Rights in Phoenix.

“We are very excited to have Alejandro join our GALEO familia,” GALEO CEO Jerry Gonzalez said in a statement. “Alejandro is a strong advocate for the rights of our communities, and his family’s legacy is vital to Latinos in our state. 

”We look forward to our continuation of building and strengthening our work with the evolution of GALEO 2.0,” Gonzalez added. 

Chavez joins GALEO at a pivotal time in Georgia politics. Latinos are a growing force among the electorate, now accounting for at least 4.1 percent of Georgia voters, according to GALEO’s Georgia Latino Voter Report, published in June 2021.

GALEO also recently announced Darrick Alvarez, a community organizer with the group, has been promoted to manager of its civic engagement program. Last year, the organization received a sizable democracy grant from the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation.

Chavez brings some West Coast and Latino perspectives to an elite group of descendants of civil rights leaders in Georgia who are carrying on their family’s legacy. 

Bernice King, the youngest daughter of slain civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr., is  CEO of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center For Nonviolent Social Change, commonly known as The King Center. Andrea Young, the executive director of ACLU of Georgia, is the daughter of Andrew Young, one of King’s closest confidantes, who also served as mayor of Atlanta and ambassador to the United Nations under President Jimmy Carter. 

The former president’s grandson, Jason Carter, is a former state senator, gubernatorial candidate and an attorney at the trial law firm Bondurant Mixson & Elmore. Elizabeth Omilami, the director of Hosea Feeds the Hungry and Homeless, is the daughter of the late civil rights activist Hosea Williams and the late Georgia state legislator Juanita T. Williams. 

Cesar Chavez

Alejandro Chavez was 15 years old when his grandfather died in 1993. He has carried on the legacy, working as an organizer and political advocate. After running Ruben Gallego’s successful campaign to be elected a state representative in Arizona, Chavez joined to promote diplomatic solutions in the Middle East, getting the organization’s members to push elected officials to support the Iran nuclear deal. 

Cesar Chavez, the iconic Mexican-American labor leader from Arizona, devoted his life to advocating for U.S. farmworkers and improving their working conditions through organizing. With Dolores Huerta, Chavez co-founded the National Farm Workers Association labor union, which evolved into the United Farm Workers Association and won several major victories through strikes and boycotts, including raising farm workers’ pay in the 1970s. 

He then became senior electoral campaign manager at Democracy for America, helping elect Rep. Veronica Escobar as the first Latina congresswoman in Texas. In 2020, he was the political director for Arizona’s Prop 207 Smart and Safe campaign to legalize recreational marijuana for adult use, which passed by 60% of the votes, the most of any marijuana initiative in the country.

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