Las Adelitas Awards

In keeping with the mission of the Mexican Heritage Center & Gallery, the ADELITA AWARD has been named Adelita in memory of the courageous women warriors in Mexico during the Mexican Revolution. Adelita was a soldadera, or woman soldier, who not only cooked and cared for the sick, but also actually fought in battles against Mexican government forces. In time the word ADELITA was used for all the soldaderas who became a vital force in the revolutionary war efforts. The term ADELITA has since come to signify a woman of Strength, Courage and Perseverance.

The ADELITA AWARD is presented each year to three (3) Latino women in the community who have succeeded in life, in spite of the many obstacles they may have encountered throughout their lives, and like the ADELITAS, have shown strength, courage and perseverance to get to where they are today.

Former Recipients of the Las Adelitas Award


Rosalinda Galaviz

Rosalinda was born and raised in New Mexico. She attended Delta College, San Jose State, and graduated from the University of the Pacific. Rosalinda began her teaching career with Stockton Unified School District and taught at various schools and various grade levels for 33 years. She attended ELAC and school site council meetings where she translated for the Latino parents. For many years, she was a representative for the California Teachers Association. Besides her regular teaching assignments, she taught Migrant students and English to adults in the summers.
After her retirement from teaching, Rosalinda became involved with the Kennedy Center in South Stockton. She became aware of how badly and unfairly the Latino community was being treated by the Director and her assistants, and started organizing to bring about change. Although not an easy task, they made tamales, rented a bus, and attended the Supervisors’ meetings where people spoke about the bad treatment they were getting. They were excited when a new Director was placed at the Center.
Rosalinda has hosted several groups that have come through Stockton for different causes. The first group was Los Peregrinos, a group of young Latinos walking from Sacramento to Bakersfield. For 3 days she provided food and housing. She also provided housing, and made and delivered food to the UFW when they walked from Merced to Sacramento.
The group 99 Rise for Democracy was also housed and fed by Rosalinda when they walked from Los Angeles to Sacramento. They camped out inside her house, in the back yard, as well as the front yard. Some even slept underneath the dining room table. When they got to Sacramento, Rosalinda continued to take food to them. She even got arrested along with some of their members, for refusing to leave the Capitol Building. For the first time in her life, She was handcuffed and patted down!!
Rosalinda raised 3 daughters, Armida, an OBGYN in El Paso Texas, Veronica a CFO
in Roswell, New Mexico, and Rosalinda, a Court Probation Officer in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Candelaria Vargas

Born in Bakersfield to third generation Mexican-American parents, Ms. Vargas was raised throughout California’s Central Valley. Due to a turbulent upbringing, Ms. Vargas and her younger brother became foster children and were separated from their mother and father for 2 years. In spite of the poverty and hardship she was raised in, Ms. Vargas excelled academically and gained entrance on scholarship to the University of the Pacific. She never forgot her valley community and after graduating with her bachelors she set out to give back by dedicating her life to public service. She is currently completing her Masters in Public Administration at California State University, Stanislaus and is the Regional Field Director for Congressman Jerry McNerney’s campaign. Through her service on several boards of non-profit organizations and membership to many others, Ms. Vargas strives to assist and serve the Latino and other under- served communities in the Central Valley.

Jonise C. Oliva

Jonise was born in Los Angeles, California to a young mother, Irene Oliva. Her Mother relocated to Stockton with 3 young children when she was 5 years old where she has remained.
Raised in South Stockton, she graduated from Edison High School, where she was voted most creative, in 1982. After graduation she pursued a career in the insurance field until she was no longer content with the industry. Not sure of her path, she decided to attend San Joaquin Delta College. During this time, she needed income, so she also applied for a part-time job at an art & frame shop called Deck The Walls located in Weberstown Mall in 1989. There she discovered her passion for art and the creative process of custom framing. In 1996 she purchased that business from her employers and this year marks Deck The Walls’ 30th Anniversary in business.
Her true joy is working with her customers creating special projects that will be cherished. She discovered several years ago that working
in the framing industry was more than making frames. Many of the items her customers bring in for framing are so important and meaningful. The interaction with her customers often involve so much emotions as she frames items that involve family history, loss, and celebration.
As a locally-owned business woman, she involved herself in the Stockton community where she has served on various boards, helps in fundraising for many non-profit organizations, mentors children and is an advocate for the local business community. Jonise has been involved with the San Joaquin County Hispanic of Commerce since 1997 and served as president of their board from 2010-2012.
Spending her free time with her 11 year old grandson, Devon and close friends bring her joy. She supports many local events, consciously shops at locally-owned businesses and advocates for the city of Stockton and is a Certified Tourist Ambassador designated by the Visitor’s Bureau of Stockton.


Molly Bustos

Molly was born in Mt. Shasta, California to immigrant parents. She was raised in Weed, CA until the age of 12 when her family relocated to Stockton where Molly has remained.
She attended and graduated from Edison High School in 1960. After graduation Molly married Richard and had 3 children, 2 sons, Rick and Dave, and a daughter, Monica. Molly pursued her education and earned a vocational nursing degree from San Joaquin Delta College. This degree became useful when her husband passed away and she was left alone to raise her 3 children.
Molly’s nursing career gave her different experiences working in the ER and assisting with minor surgeries. She spent her last 18 years working at the San Joaquin General Hospital where she managed an employee health clinic, taught, and assisted new employees.
Molly was nominated Employee of the Year in 2006. She has always found much happiness and satisfaction volun- teering and joining organizations that help our “gente”. She has volunteered in many health fairs including Su Salud. She is a religious person and serves in the social justice ministry.
Molly’s hobbies include attending theatre, musicals and film events. She also is an avid reader. Molly continues to give of her time and is a valued member of the Mexican Heritage Center and Gallery where she works endlessly as a volunteer, and often takes on duties that others don’t like to do.

Ana Marie Zapian

Ana Maria Vizcarra Zapien was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico in 1955. She moved with her parents from Mexico to Stockton in 1969, by train with her 8 siblings. Her parents worked as farm laborers in the fields surround- ing Stockton for most of their lives. Ana Maria attended Fremont Elementary and Franklin high School and graduat- ed in 1974. She met her husband, Rosalio Zapien at Franklin High School and later married two years later. They had 4 children; Daniel, Moses, Esmeralda, and Priscilla.
Ana Maria is a business woman. She helped her husband start a small business making dentures in Stockton shortly after marrying. Over the course of 30 years, they grew it into a thriving family business where Ana’s young- er brother and her oldest son still work today. Ana Maria also started one of a hand full of Spanish bookstores selling music and literature, called Rosa de Sharon.
Ana has always been active in the community. She is active in the Temple Israel in Stockton, and in the Hispanic Community supporting a number of events and volunteering. She helped organize and made cupcakes for the Mexican Mother’s Day event held at the Kennedy Center, and continues to be active at the Center.
She was very active in the 2012 election, where she campaigned for a number of local candidates including her son, Moses Zapien who won his election for city council. Ana has 4 grandchildren.

Jennie Rodriguez-Moore

Jennie is a native of San Joaquin County, having been born in French Camp to farmworker parents Evangelina and Jose Rodriquez.
She attended Edison High School, then Model Alternative as a teen parent. While attending Model, Jennie worked part time at the Children’s Museum of Stockton as a recreational leader, where she painted murals and eventually learned to coordinate and lead children’s afterschool programs and summer camps.
After receiving an associate degree in accounting, Jennie moved on to work in the accounting field. She worked as an administrative assistant/accounting clerk at a railroad engineering company in Stockton. She joined The Record newspaper in 2002, looking for a change from accounting. She was hired to conduct system maintenance of the circulation computer system in the circulation department. She wanted more of a challenge, so she decided to pursue a bachelor’s degree in business management by enrolling in night classes.
Jennie began to freelance for the weekly Latino publication, writing stories that focused on her community. She wrote about subjects close to her heart, including immigration, language barriers and other challenges in Latino communities. But she also was able to highlight great attributes of our culture and events that were cause for cele- bration and symbolized Latino pride. When Jennie graduated from University of the Phoenix, The Record hired her fulltime to continue covering the Latino community.
In 2009, she and her husband Christopher Lee Moore started a business-Moore Quality Pest Control in Tracy. The Moores together have six children, ranging in ages 11 to 23, and live in a small farm.
Jennie periodically speaks to kids at schools about her job and leads journalism workshops. She has led work- shops at LULAC’s leadership conference at San Joaquin Delta College and at Tracy Business Group’s Latino youth career conference.
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