Aurea Montes-Rodriguez is the Vice President of Organizational Growth at Community Coalition, a social justice non-profit based in South Los Angeles. Born in Mexico but raised in South L.A., Aurea is responsible for the development and sustainability of the organization. She is a passionate advocate and community organizer focusing on building black and brown unity who has been working in South L.A. for nearly fifteen years.
Karen Bass is the U.S. Representative for California’s 33rd congressional district. Prior to her serving as the current Congress member for CA-33rd, Karen Bass made history when the California Assembly elected her to be its 67th Speaker, catapulting her to become the first African American woman in the country to serve in this powerful state legislative role. In 1990 Bass founded and ran Community Coalition, a community-based social justice organization in South Los Angeles to empower residents to get involved in making a difference.
Dr. Manuel Pastor is Professor of American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California and currently directs the Program for Environmental and Regional Equity at USC. His work focuses on issues of the economic, environmental and social conditions facing low-income urban communities – and the social movements seeking to change those realities.
Please share your stories and reflections of the 20th anniversary of the Civil Unrest: what do you think led to the Civil Unrest? What progress has South L.A. made since then? What do we still need to work on?