A Personal Tribute to Rosario Anaya
A personal tribute to Rosario Anaya, long-time director of San Francisco’s Mission Language Vocational School and member (for 12 years) of the San Francisco School Board, who died on Wednesday, Aug. 5.
Rosario served on the PNS-NAM Board for almost two decades. She was always there for us – at our expos, awards, briefings, board meetings. When IRCA – the Immigration Reform and Control Act – went into effect in 1986, I called to ask her if she’d sign a deposition saying that she had known a young Salvadoran named Cesar since the early 1980s. (To qualify for amnesty, undocumented immigrants had to have been in the country for several years prior to 1986.) As an elected official – she was then head of the School Board – signing that deposition held a certain amount of risk for her. Because she signed it, Cesar got amnesty and began studying at the University of California.
I remember one day driving with her to Sacramento to give a presentation on immigration – Pete Wilson’s 187 was in full force. In that speech, she remarked about how leadership wasn’t about the specific things an individual did; it was about passing on the torch, from one generation to the next.
She passed on her inspiration to me over many years.
Sandy Close, Executive Director