Julio Raúl Pabón
Founding Member of LPN: A Living History Book for Our Community... By Alberto Vasallo, III
Talking to Julio Raúl Pabón about the Latino community is like talking to a living history book. Let’s just put it this way. Pabón has, in one way or another, been involved during the beginning stages of the following institutions: Semana Hispana in Lawrence, the Latino Professional Network, The Hispanic Lions Club in Lowell, The Lawrence Eagle Tribune and this very publication.
“Oh, I’ve been around and many of the Latino leaders and professionals who may be considered ‘older’ today, were just starting out in their businesses or careers when I first met them. Many were still in college,” recalls Pabón.
Pabón points to people like WCVB-Channel 5 reporter, Jorge Quiroga, and LPN founder David Cortiella, both of whom were at Harvard when he first met them.
“They might not remember me, but I recall interviewing them for El Mundo way back in the early 70’s. I also remember the first issues of your paper.”
Julio Pabón has indeed been around for a long time.
For the past 18 years he has worked for Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD), the largest independent, private, non-profit human services agency in New England, assisting more than 100,000 low-income individuals and families annually. Before that, he was an active member of the community through his work right here at El Mundo Newspaper.
“Although I enjoyed journalism, my degree was in education with a minor in philosophy and social sciences, so when I had the opportunity to work for an agency with so many programs that involved my studies, it was a natural,” explains Pabón.
In one way, what was El Mundo’s loss then became the community’s gain.
“I truly enjoyed being a correspondent in Framingham, Lawrence and Assistant Editor for the paper. It put me in contact with so many committed people.”
Pabón is a very humble individual who does not like to talk much about his experiences and profound knowledge of our community as he has mostly enjoyed the behind the scenes level of participation.
“I’ll tell you what, it has been a pleasure seeing how many more Latino professionals we have today practicing medicine, the law, engineers, architects and I have thoroughly enjoyed watching LPN grow.”
Pabón was actually at the very first LPN meeting, when the idea was just getting off the ground.
“There were a couple of us at that time - Filiberto Fernández, Gus Viera and Felix Arroyo - who were talking about forming a Hispanic Professionals Association. Then I heard about David Cortiella’s LPN meeting. After that, we decided to join forces. I am proud to say I was a member of the first LPN Board.”
Julio, we are confident that LPN is just as proud of that fact as you are.
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