LULAC MOURNS THE PASSING OF GLORIA MOLINA, LOS ANGELES LEADER AND PUBLIC SERVANT
Nation's Oldest and Largest Latino Civil Rights Organization Honors a Trailblazer, Social Justice Warrior, and Role Model
May 15, 2023
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Washington, DC - The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is saddened to announce the passing of a great Latina political leader and friend of LULAC, Gloria Molina. Gloria passed away Sunday evening at her home in Los Angeles, the city she loved and served for over five decades. She was 74 years old.
Domingo Garcia, LULAC National President, stated, "We have lost a great champion of social justice and a tireless advocate for Jose y Maria. I was privileged to have known her and worked alongside Gloria on many battles for labor equity and equality for our people. Also, she was a staunch and unrelenting force for Latinos on issues that included access to housing, health services, investment in Latino barrios, and representation in the halls of power."
Photo credit: Michael Edwards, Herald Examiner Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
Gloria Molina was the oldest of ten children and the daughter of Mexican parents. She was born in Pico Rivera, and her commitment to public service began at a young age. She served in the White House in the 1970s during the Jimmy Carter administration, and when she returned home, she never left public service.
Gloria was elected to the California State Assembly in the 1980s for five years. She went on to win the Los Angeles City Council election in 1986, representing a district that included East Los Angeles and parts of the San Fernando Valley. These were two of the city's poorest areas economically but with a rich cultural vibrancy. Where others saw only poverty, Gloria Molina saw potential.
In 1990, Molina won a seat on the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors and stayed through 2014. She represented more than two million people as the first Latina on the five-person county supervisorial panel, a job more significant than that of many of the nation's mayors. Gloria was known for her steel temperament, incisive questions, and eloquent oratory. She was a political ally many sought and a political foe her opponents feared.
Throughout her career, Gloria Molina fought tirelessly for the Latino community, advocating for labor equity, housing, health services, investment in Latino barrios, and representation in the halls of power. Her campaigns ignited the imagination and support of Latinos nationally, and her legacy will continue to inspire future generations.
"LULAC honors Gloria Molina for her service, spirit, and dedication to the community she loved," says Garcia. "Gloria was a trailblazer, a leader, and a friend to many. She gave without measure to the community that she loved, and we loved her. Her legacy will live on through the countless lives she touched and the positive change she created," he added.
As we mourn the passing of Gloria Molina, we celebrate her life of service well-lived. May she rest in power, knowing that her impact on the Latino community and the broader society will be felt long into the future. LULAC extends its condolences to Gloria Molina's family and loved ones during this difficult time. We share in their loss and honor the legacy of a great Latina political leader and friend of LULAC.