“If you can’t fly, run; if you can’t run, walk; if you can’t walk, crawl; but by all means keep moving.” Martin Luther King Jr.’s words have long inspired many Americans, including Alumni Association Board of Directors member Sal Valdez ’78, who was always an agent of change in his community.
Starting in his college days at Santa Clara, Valdez worked with Mexican American labor leader Cesar Chavez as a community organizer, helping to improve the lives of farm workers. Over the years, he also served as president of the United Neighborhood Organization of East Los Angeles, which advocates for better living and working conditions in the area. But, after a life-altering stroke 12 years ago, Valdez had to find his deepest wells of strength to continue his mission of service. Motivated by the words of Dr. King, his 91-year-old mother, and a crumbling sidewalk, he showed his Los Angeles community—and now all of us—that transformation is within our own power. As we begin a new year, watch his story and be inspired »