Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC), Maria Moreno interviewed by Ernest Lowe, ca. early 1960s

In the late 1950s, Maria Moreno, a migrant farm worker and mother of twelve, used her fearlessness and talent for public speaking to become the one of the first organizers for the Agricultural Workers’ Organizing Committee (AWOC) in the Fresno, California area. Regarded as a powerful organizer, she was elected to head the AWOC delegation to the National AFL-CIO convention. At her prime Maria Moreno was very successful in restoring support for agricultural workers, but unfortunately not much is known about her. Moreno is the subject of an upcoming documentary by the filmmaker Laurie Coyle called "Adios Amor". The Walter P. Reuther Library is featuring a short audio clip of Maria Moreno from our AWOC collection of an interview that Ernie Lowe conducted with her in Salinas, California right before the start of a union meeting. In the clip, Ms. Moreno discusses agricultural workers' wages and living conditions, among other things.