Alfonso C. Hernandez passed away in the early am of June 20th ending a hard fought fight with cancer.
Hernandez is known to many in Porterville as “Professor Hernandez” and to others as a gifted academic and playwright. According to Professor Charles M. Tatum “Alfonso C. Hernandez is perhaps the most artistically radical contemporary Chicano playwright in terms of his techniques. His earlier works are harmonious combinations of music, dance, film and pantomime.”
According to a press release, Hernandez was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico to Sabina Casarez and Alfonso Hernandez Velazquez. In 1959, he came to the United States as a foreign student and received his associate of Art Degree from Stockton College. After a one-year trip around the world, he earned a bachelor’s degree from San Jose State University in 1965, and a Masters of Art degree from Claremont College in 1970. This was followed by his Ph.D. studies at the University of Oregon and post-graduate studies at University de Paris, Sorbonne, the University of Salzburg, the University of Montreal and other prestigious academic institutions.
Alfonso arrived in Porterville in 1965 and is likely one of the first Hispanic classroom teachers who taught at Porterville High School, Monache High School and Porterville College until his retirement in 2002. However, his love of academics keeps him teaching.
Alfonso has a long history of community activism that reflects his humanitarianism.
He has been an active member of the Association of Mexican American Educators (AMAE) since its creation. He also joined the Chicano Movement as soon as he became aware of the deplorable conditions of the Mexican and Chicano workers and was part of the boycotts. He was instrumental in CHMA’s Cinco de Mayo celebrations at Porterville Municipal Auditorium in the 1970s and Chicano plays.
Hernandez’s community involvement has always been relevant to the community and he has used his talent in organizations and institutions such as O.L.A. Raza Inc., the United Farm Workers, Porterville’s Barn Theater, Porterville College, Sierra Vocal Arts Ensemble, the Tulare County Orchestra board of directors, and others. He is presently the Unitarian-Universalist social justice chairman
Porterville Democrats Mission Statement: The Porterville Democrats come from all areas of the city and surrounding communities, all backgrounds, and all walks of life, but we share beliefs and values that help shape a better America for all!
Meetings: 2nd Tuesday of the Month at 6:00 p.m.Meal & Social -:- 7:00 p.m. Meeting
Location: Pizza Factory -:- 897 W. Henderson Ave. Porterville CA
Porterville Democratic Club 1750 N. Lotas St. Porterville, CA 93257