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Voting rights expert Joaquin Avila to speak

Joaquín Avila, private attorney, former staff attorney for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF) and voting rights expert, will deliver the 12th annual Ernesto Galarza Commemorative Lecture on "The Importance of Politically Integrating Racial and Ethnic Minorities into the Body Politic." Avila has challenged discriminatory practices in the areas of voting rights, employment, education and immigration. He served as lead counsel in several important voting rights lawsuits involving challenges against discriminatory election structures at the congressional, state and local government levels. In 1982 Avila testified before the U.S. Congress in support of the extension of the Voting Rights Act. From 1982 to 1985 he served as president and general counsel of MALDEF, and was responsible for the formulation and implementation of a national Latino civil rihts agenda that resulted in major legislative and legal victories. The lecture will be held at 4 p.m. Friday, April 11, at the Law School, room 290. The lecture is sponsored by the Stanford Center for Chicano Research. SR