Emma Tenyuca Park

Emma Tenyuca Park

January 31, 2022
Petition to
City of San Antonio Mayor and City Council
Signatures: 15Next Goal: 25
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Why this petition matters

Started by D Ojeda

San Antonio woman believes Emma Tenayuca's legacy should be better preserved

SAN ANTONIO — Denise Ojeda attended a community meeting recently, listening and jotting down notes about a potential name change to a community center in her Southeast San Antonio neighborhood.
She stood in front of the crowd of people to suggest the name of an important figure in San Antonio history. 
“San Antonio has its own history of hidden figures,” she said. “One of them being my classmate and alum, Emma Tenayuca.” 
The late Tenayuca was a labor leader, union organizer and educator in San Antonio. She led 12,000 pecan shellers, most of them Mexican American women, out of the factories in 1938. 
“Her contributions to our community and our history [are] on a national and global scale. Not just locally. [Her contributions have] been redacted and edited out of history books,” Ojeda said. 

Ojeda says that Tenayuca is just one of many women in our history that don’t get the recognition they deserve. 

Lucero Saldaña teaches about Tenayuca in her Mexican American Studies class at San Antonio College and agrees with Ojeda that Mexican American history, when taught, is more focused on men. 
“With the farm workers movement, we usually talk about Cesar Chavez, but we typically forget about Dolores, Dolores Huerta,” Saldaña said. 
Saldaña knows she’s doing her part as a professor but believes that Tenayuca’s history should be taught much earlier than the at college level. “[We] definitely need our educators here in San Antonio to teach about her in every level, and we see Emma in murals across the city, we see Emma in a few spots — not enough,” Saldaña said. That’s why Ojeda visited the community center. She believes there’s not enough done to honor the women she calls the hidden figures of San Antonio.

Even though it’s not likely the community center will be named after Tenayuca, it’s not going to stop Ojeda from trying. “I’ll give it a try, and if I fail, well then I’ll just keep trying. I’ll move on to another park, maybe San Pedro Park,” Ojeda said, laughing. 


Support now
Signatures: 15Next Goal: 25
Support now