February 28, 2014 – Las Cruces, NM - On this edition of PUENTES, Emily Guerra bridges the community with life-long activist, Elisa Maria Sanchez. She was past 1990’s President and CEO of MANA, a National Latina Organization; and creator and former Director of ENLACE at New Mexico State University. Sanchez grew up in Grant County, where over 60 years ago the Empire Zinc strike took place, and then became memorialized in the film, “Salt of the Earth.” She lived both the strike and the making of the film alongside her mother, Angelina G. Sanchez, who was active on the picket line and was a main character in the movie. When her mother died, Sanchez created a scholarship endowment for Latino students at New Mexico State University to study abroad.
The 60th anniversary of the release of the only U.S. blacklisted film will be celebrated at NMSU. This year Sanchez has partnered with the NMSU Foundation and the College of Education to have a week-long celebration of issues raised by the strike and the film. She will be a guest speaker at a discussion entitled “Platica Con Mujeres de Color (A Talk with Women of Color): Finding Comfort in Our Skin,” on campus at 4 p.m. at O’Donnell Hall, Rm.111.
Activities at NMSU will start on Monday, March 10th and conclude on Friday, March 14th with the showing of the film, Salt of the Earth. All events are free. For more information call 575-646-6313. Grant County will also celebrate the 60th anniversary on March 15th; for information call 505-455-2853; or go to facebook event: “60th Anniversary Salt of the Earth (Film Release).”