Long-time Latino political activist Benny Diaz has quit the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and shuttered the Garden Grove LULAC Council he’s run for many years in the face of allegations of misconduct, according to a press release issued by the LULAC California State Director David Rodriguez.
The media release:
Orange County LULAC Leader Resigns Amid Investigation
Benny Diaz, a longtime Orange County officer and member of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) has left the organization and closed the Garden Grove LULAC Council amid charges of misconduct filed against him by several Orange County women according to California LULAC State Director Dave Rodriguez.
Diaz was suspended for several months pending the outcome of the inquiry. Action was pending against him by the organization’s national board of directors when he informed Rodriguez of his resignation.
Rodriguez confirmed that the organization had “fully investigated serious claims of misconduct” against Diaz. “This is not who we are as an organization and we will not tolerate this type of behavior”. No specific details were provided.
California LULAC has several long established chapters throughout Orange County including Santa Ana, Anaheim, and a newly chartered group in the City of Orange.
LULAC is an old-line Hispanic civil rights organization whose profile has been increasingly overshadowed by more radical voices have asserted themselves in the realm of Latino political activism.
In the e-mail accompanying the press release, Rodriguez stated:
Due to the serious nature of the allegations and the possibility of additional victims we have elected to publicly inform the Orange County community of Benny’s resignation from the League. It is important for the public and the five active councils in Orange County to be able to conduct LULAC’s business with the community knowing that Benny is no longer a member.
We are appreciative of his contributions as a longtime member and wish him the best of luck.
Diaz has been a fixture in OC Latino and Democratic political activism for decades. He lost a run for Garden Grove City Council in 2006, was defeated as an also-ran candidate in the February 2007 special election for 1st District Supervisor, and unsuccessfully sought appointment in April 2007 to the Garden Grove City Council vacancy created by Janet Nguyen’s victory in the 1st Supervisor District special election. He was involved in the successful push for by-district elections in Garden Grove as a LULAC officer, is a former California state director for LULAC and is listed as chair and president of the Orange County LULAC Foundation Board of Directors.
OC Daily has reached out to Diaz for comment.