The Manuel Guerrero Courage in Leadership Award
The Manuel Guerrero Courage In Leadership honors the legacy of one of the co-founders and the first President of the Minnesota Hispanic Bar Association. Manuel Guerrero served as an attorney in a remarkable career spanning more than half a century.
Manuel became a District Court Judge at age 29, was a candidate for the United States Congress, a Bush Foundation Fellowship Recipient, the Director of the Chicano/Latino Resource Center and the Chair of the Chicano Studies Department at the University of Minnesota, and he was a respected practicing criminal defense attorney who continued to represent Latinos until his death in 2014.
As an attorney, Manuel taught us about courage, compassion and leadership by sometimes taking the more difficult path. Manuel was unfazed by the controversy and public opinion that surrounded some of the high profile cases he took on. His focus was always on reaching out to the accused and providing them with zealous representation and the feeling that they were not alone.
Manuel will be remembered for his vision for the Latino community, his friendship, his mentorship, and his desire to help others succeed.
Since the MHBA was founded in 1991, Manuel was a constant presence in the organization. The spirit of this award memorializes the legacy of Manuel's lifetime of work as a friend, mentor, community leader, and advocate for justice.
The Manuel Guerrero Courage in Leadership Award recognizes a visionary community leader whose work is transformative and has broad impact in the State of Minnesota and beyond. A leader who mobilizes and unifies the community around causes that improve people's lives. The award is for leaders that go beyond personal achievement and strive to empower the community, strengthen community participation, and advance social change and the capacity of others to improve the wellbeing and prosperity of the Latino community.