02 Nov The Martina & Hank Curl Award
Martina and Hank were life-long PCUNista’s who gave their heart and souls to the movement since the inception of PCUN. The Martina and Hank Curl Award represents life-long commitment and dedication to farmworkers, poor people, the working class, and racial, immigrant, and social justice. At the heart of this award, is a love, and respect for our elders, and those who came before the new generation.
In the 1980’s PCUN joined a demonstration against the War in El Salvador at Evergreen Aviation in McMinnville, Oregon. When we arrived after marching, the marchers were met with a police blockade and a temporary fence to prohibit the marchers from continuing.
The police also threatened to arrest the group. Martina didn’t stand down. Martina was an elder – she was in her late 80’s – despite that she rushed the fence, and got over it! And was taken down and arrested as soon as she got over the fence. That act of courage sparked something in the marchers, and everyone attending the march proceeded to rush the fence. Martina was a leader, an artist, and had a deep affection for struggle, and resistance.
Martina was also an artist who painted the living conditions of poor people during the Great Depression. See her Bio and painting at www.ochcom.org/gangle. Both Hank and Martina were with us until their dying days.
Years later, Hank attended his very last PCUN convention. He knew he was going to die soon. He came to the convention, and at the end stood up and said he would give his last bit of money to PCUN before he died. This was in the mid-90’s. He handed the PCUN board a check for $10,000 dollars. He gave financially that day, but really gave his entire life to PCUN.
We like to remember them, and give this recognition to people who have served, and continue to serve the movement.
List of past recipients
2022 – Nominated, Victoria Lara
2020 – Laura Isiordia, Former Board Member of PCUN, currently Serving on the Woodburn School Board
2019 – Linda Herrera (Retired Chief DEI officer of Chemeketa Community College), and Representative Rebeca Saldaña of Washington State
2015 – Billy Hobbs (Elder and Labor Activist)
2014 – Oregon Senator Avel Gordly (Black Leader, and Civil Rights Activist)