NCLR Mourns the Loss of Arizona Latino Pioneer and Affiliate Leader Pete Garcia

WASHINGTON, D.C—The following is a statement from NCLR (National Council of La Raza) President and CEO Janet Murguía on the passing of Pete Garcia, former President and CEO of NCLR Affiliate Chicanos Por La Causa (CPLC).

“We were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of a dedicated leader, advocate, friend, and NCLR Affiliate partner. Pete was a force of nature—not just a champion of Arizona’s Latino community, but a man who committed his life to working tirelessly to improve the lives of the underserved and the vulnerable. His work and dedication touched the lives of countless number of Arizonans for the better.

Throughout his decades-long tenure as President and CEO, Pete’s early and visionary leadership raised the bar on what was possible for a social services community organization, from growing its asset base to impressive figures to expanding the number of programs offered to include affordable housing, health services and workforce development. His contributions and deep commitment to empowering Latinos helped pave the way for one of the original seven Affiliates of NCLR to become the largest nonprofit community organization in the state and one of the largest in the Southwest.

Pete was an invaluable partner to NCLR, especially in helping us to significantly expand our housing and community development efforts, and advising and supporting us during the launch of the Raza Development Fund, which is now the largest Latino Community Development Financial Institution in the country. Pete’s legacy lives on, not just in a stronger Arizona, but in a more accomplished Affiliate Network and in the rich NCLR history he helped to shape. On behalf of the entire NCLR familia, we extend our deepest condolences to his devoted wife Sara, the rest of the Garcia family, and Pete’s many, many friends and colleagues.”

NCLR—the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States—works to build a stronger America by creating opportunities for Latinos. For more information on NCLR, please visit or follow along on Facebook and Twitter.