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FACTOIDS ABOUT RUBEN CONTRERAS
Ruben worked with future Oregon Governor Tom McCall on a small steering committee which lead to the 1959 groundbreaking Oregon laws protecting and helping migrant workers in Oregon.
Ruben helped write the grant in the 1960s for the Valley Migrant League, and later served as director of the Yamhill County office.
The Bracero Program brought Ruben to the U.S. to help America during with World War II. While helping the war effort in McMinnville, Oregon he met his wife Alberta. They were married for 62 years until his passing in 2010.
Ruben is believed to be the first Mexican to take up residence in Yamhill County. An Hispanic's presence was so unusual that retired school Principal Laurel Adams, then just a kid, remembers riding his bike to the service station, where Ruben worked for a time, just to hear his accent!
Ruben was one of just 15 pioneering national advisors for agricultural safety in America in the 1970s.
Ruben was an actor in the Mexican Cinema, having speaking roles in several major studios productions in the 1940s.