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2012 Arizona Latina Trailblazers Honored

August 29, 2012

Community members gathered to celebrate four of the state’s pioneering women at the fourth annual Arizona Latina Trailblazers event on March 28, 2012 at Phoenix Art Museum. Cheers, laughter, applause, and tears greeted the stories of Amanda Aguirre, the first Latina to represent the Yuma area in the State Legislature in over 130 years; Liz Archuleta, who became the first Latina elected to the Coconino County Board of Supervisors in 120 years; Terri Cruz, who is recognized as the “mother” of Chicanos Por La Causa; and Anna Maria Chávez, the first Hispanic woman selected to serve as President/CEO of the Girl Scouts of the USA in its 100-year history.

Presented by the RCI at Phoenix College and Latino Perspectives Magazine with generous sponsorship from Salt River Project, the celebration was free and open to the public. It featured a video chronicling the moving and uplifting the women’s lives.The stories featured interviews with family members, colleagues, and the honorees.

“The Trailblazers have an uncanny ability to translate vision into reality,” said Tony Moya, manager of Latino Relations for SRP. “They go off-road and create their own innovative path.”

“In honor of their pioneering spirit, we commit to passing their stories on to future generations of trailblazers — our children and grandchildren — with the hope that they too will be inspired to forge paths that will lead to a better community, a better society for all,” said Dr. Anna Solley, president of Phoenix College.

Each guest at the event received a copy of Arizona Latina Trailblazers: Stories of Courage, Hope and Determination, Vol. IV, authored by historian Jean Reynolds, and the companion DVD. Both are available via the Arizona Memory Project at the state library’s website. Copies also were distributed to all public libraries in the state.