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A Message From Our New President and CEO Manuel Bernal

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At the end of 2023, the Cesar Chavez Foundation (CCF) Board of Directors announced Paul Chavez’s retirement and my appointment as CCF’s President and CEO. During his 30 years with the Chavez Foundation and more than 50 years with the farm worker movement, Paul has ensured that the legacy and values of his father continue inspiring people to make a difference in their lives and communities. I am humbled and honored to follow in his footsteps as we move forward into this next chapter.  

Over the past several years, Paul and I have worked together crafting a vision for CCF. I made a personal commitment to continue the work of impacting lives through the guidance of Cesar’s values. My intention as the new President and CEO is to steer CCF into the future and facilitate growth so more needs are addressed as we work to improve the quality of life for Latinos and working people. While we will continue focusing on growth in the Southwest, we are placing special emphasis on growing our presence in Texas, and looking forward to working with partners as we advance our mission of inspiring and transforming communities.   

CCF has experienced tremendous growth and has never been stronger. We have a Board of Directors committed to the ideals that started the National Farm Workers Service Center 60 years ago, and a management team and staff dedicated to implementing the daily work.  What started as an organization to address the fundamental needs of working families, CCF has grown and transformed into a successful collection of social enterprises supporting millions of Latinos and other working families with nearly 400 employees across five Southwestern states. As we prepare to cross the billion-dollar mark of investment in underserved communities through CCF social enterprises, the organization is poised to achieve new heights.  

Thank you for your continued support. I am grateful to be on this journey with you.

 

Manuel H. Bernal, President and CEO
Cesar Chavez Foundation 

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Board of Directors Announces Paul Chavez’s Retirement

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The Cesar Chavez Foundation (CCF) Board of Directors announces President Paul Chavez’s retirement at year’s end. During more than 30 years with CCF, Paul Chavez has ensured the legacy and values of his father continue inspiring people to make a difference in their lives and communities. Under his leadership, CCF has grown and transformed into a successful collection of social enterprises supporting millions of Latinos and working families, inspiring and transforming communities from rural to urban areas throughout the Southwest and across the generations. We thank Paul for his unwavering determination, guidance, and his nearly 50 years of commitment to the movement.

The Board of Directors has named CCF’s Chief Operating Officer Manuel Bernal to succeed Paul Chavez as president. Manuel has spent nearly 35 years in community development and a quarter century in leadership roles crafting a vision for CCF. He first joined the foundation in 1999, and until 2011 was Executive Vice President for Housing and Economic Development. Then, he served on the Board of Directors until 2017. Most recently, as chief operating officer, overseeing CCF’s four core programs: affordable housing, education, communications, and legacy work. Manuel’s roots and passion for community development have provided a strong vision for CCF’s future.

We have full confidence in Manuel’s vision for CCF and wish him success in his new role. Following his retirement, Paul will continue to serve on CCF’s Board of Directors and will continue serving farm worker movement organizations as a member of their boards. We wish Paul a happy retirement and thank him for his service in expanding our impact inspiring and transforming communities. We stand ready to support Manuel as he guides the organization forward.

Sincerely,
Cesar Chavez Foundation Board of Directors