Lionel Wilson & Cesar Chavez
10 in HIGH x 8 in WIDE
(25.40 cm HIGH x 20.32 cm WIDE)
The Oakland Tribune Collection, the Oakland Museum of California. Gift of ANG Newspapers

People, Politics, Protest, & Promise: African Americans in the News

Two clippings glued to the back of the photo, one March 30, 1977--"Judge Lionel Wilson (left), Cesar Chavez, Farm workers leader endorsed Judge Wilson for mayor." Second clipping, January 6, 1991--"Cesar Chavez endorsed Wilson in 1977." Photo shows the two men posing together. Wilson wearing a suit and Chavez wearing a jean jacket buttoned over a stripped shirt. A button in support of Wilson is pinned on Chavez's jacket. Excerpt from the Oakland Tribune, March 30, 1977, article titled "Chavez Backs Judge Wilson" by Bill Martin: "Cesar Chavez took sides in the Oakland mayoral race yesterday, pledging his farm workers union's full support of the candidacy of Superior Court Judge Lionel J. Wilson. Sitting alongide the judge at a press conference, Chavez said United Farm Workers Union members and sympathizers in Oakland would be active in Judge Wilson's drive to become Oakland's first black mayor. 'We feel that this city, unlike any other city in the state, has a very severe unemployment problem,' Chavez said. He charged that the city has suffered from 'a lack of leadership over the years.' Wherever his union finds such conditions, the farm leader siad, 'we try to participate and try to make things better.' He said, 'What happens here has a bearing on us and on the rest of the state.' Asked about his endorsement of Judge Wilson rather than one of two Spanish speaking candidates also in the mayoral race (Councilman Joe Coto and Hector Reyna), Chavez said, 'We support the candidate we think is the best...regardless of whether he's a Chicano or not.' Judge Wilson, anticipating questions about what role Chavez could play in an urban political campaign, siad in a statement, 'Attitudes which would ignore the rights of laborers in the fields are the same attitudes which would tolerate high unemployment in Oakland.' When asked a similar question later in the press conference, the judge again said, 'What happens to the under-privileged everywhere has implications in the city of Oakland.' Welcoming Chavez' backing, the candidate said, 'We would not have felt that our labor endorsements were complete without the support of an individual and organization so dedicated to developing the rights and respect of our agricultural workers.' Judge Wilson indicated that the problem of Oakland's having a 'staggering 23,000' unemployed has gone 'unchallenged' so far. As he has earlier in his campaign, the candidate again called for the establishment of an active labor and management advisory committee which would help create solutions both to unemplyment and the plight of small independent business owners. He also said the city needs leadership which would strive to develop a modern industrial park 'conducive to attracting and maintaining industry in our city.' Turning to Chavez, Judge Wilson said, 'I proudly accept this endorsement because I believe that the people of Oakland are looking for leadership which will listen and respond to the concerns of all segments of our city-minorities, women, business, labor, senior citizens, youth, and all other citizens, and that this endorsement is indicative of our broad base of support.'" This photo use in the Oakland Tribune March 30, 1977 and again January 6, 1991.

Used: Oakland Tribune

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