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Westside Digest

Westside : Latino Chapter Formed

February 11, 1988

Latino activists have formed the Westside's first chapter of the Mexican American Political Assn. and elected interim officers.

The officers, who will serve for 90 days, are: Jorge Zermeno, a Culver City businessman, president; Rose Menchaca, a Santa Monica teacher, vice president; Natividad Vazquez, director of the Latino Center at Santa Monica College, secretary; Ralph Primo, a West Los Angeles stockbroker, treasurer, and Martha Zaragoza, a state employee who lives in Culver City, parliamentarian.

Organizers said that education and voter registration will be principal issues for the association. They expressed hope that although it has lost some of its influence in recent years, it will serve as a political beachhead for Westside Latinos.

"The name (of the association) itself carries weight, but only so far as we can get people registered and out to vote," said Dan Marquez, a lawyer and one of the founders of the chapter.

"With elections around the corner, we have to determine whether the 1990s will be the (era) of the Latino and whether we will be a force to be reckoned with," he added.

About 35 people signed up as members at the chapter's first organizational meeting last Sunday in Santa Monica.

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