Gloria La Riva is a labor, community and anti-war activist based in San Francisco, California. Born in Albuquerque, N.M., Gloria attended Brandeis University where she was active in affirmative action struggles.
Gloria has been a key organizer of many mass demonstrations and other actions opposing the wars and occupation in Central America, Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan, Yugoslavia and elsewhere.
Gloria has worked for decades to defend Cuba’s sovereignty and against the U.S. blockade. She was awarded Cuba’s Friendship Medal in 2010, approved by the Council of State, for her many years of Cuba solidarity, and is the national coordinator of the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five.
Gloria has traveled to Venezuela many times since the election of Hugo Chávez to president in 1998, most recently in December 2014. She has engaged in discussions with leading members of the Bolivarian Revolution, including the late president, as well as current president Nicolás Maduro.
Gloria has been active in the struggle for immigrant rights, organizing for and speaking at many mass marches in California over the past 30 years. In the early 1990s, she was the initiator of the Farmworkers Emergency Relief campaign, following a disastrous freeze that left tens of thousands of Central Valley agricultural workers with no income.
Gloria organized support for the Black Fire Fighters Association in their struggle to end racist and sexist discrimination in the San Francisco Fire Department in the 1980s.
A longtime supporter of LGBTQ rights, Gloria participated in the first National March for Lesbian and Gay rights in 1979 and subsequent national marches. She joined in the marches and rallies protesting the passage of the anti-marriage equality Prop 8 in California. She has joined picket lines defending women’s reproductive health clinics.
In 1998 Gloria produced the award-winning video, Genocide by Sanctions: The Case of Iraq, documenting the effects of the U.S./UN blockade on Iraq. In 1999, she traveled twice to Yugoslavia with former U.S. attorney general Ramsey Clark, at the height of the U.S./NATO bombing war, producing the video, NATO Targets. In September 2005, six days after Hurricane Katrina, Gloria traveled to New Orleans, producing the video Heroes Not Looters. In 2014, she traveled to Ferguson during the uprising there in the wake of the police murder of Michael Brown.
Gloria is a blogger for LiberationNews.org, where she has written extensively on Latin America and many other issues.
In 1994 and 1998, Gloria was Peace & Freedom Party’s candidate for governor of California. She ran as a socialist candidate for mayor of San Francisco in 1983, finishing third overall and second in every working-class neighborhood. She was the 2008 presidential candidate of the Party for Socialism and Liberation. She is the elected Executive Vice President of the Pacific Media Workers Guild, Communications Workers of America, Local 39521.
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