UFW’s Rodriguez to retire, Romero to lead union
United Farm Workers Union President Arturo Rodriguez will retire on Dec. 20, and the UFW board and other leaders have elected Teresa Romero, secretary-treasurer of the union, to succeed him.
Romero as the first Latina and first immigrant woman to become president of a national union in the United States. She is the UFW’s chief administrative officer, and has been with the orgnization for nine years.
Rodriguez has been with the union for 45 years and became president after founder Cesar Chavez, his father-in-law, died in 1993. The union published a list of accomplishments under Rodriguez in a lengthy news release.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said “Arturo stepped up to fill the void left by the passing of Cesar Chavez, his father-in-law and UFW’s first president, in 1993. Building on the legacy of its founders, Arturo grew the UFW into one of the most influential labor unions in the country.
“Under his leadership, the union was able to increase the average pay for farmworkers to more than $13 an hour,” Feinstein said.
“And starting next year, farmworkers will finally be eligible for overtime pay in California thanks to Arturo’s efforts to end an 80-year-old exclusion for farmworkers in the Fair Labor Standards Act.
“Arturo leaves the UFW in good hands,” Feinstein said, adding that she looks forward to working with Romero.