1951 - 1962
The prelude to the formation of the club occurred in 1951 when the Santiago and the Romero families gathered informally to provide social opportunities for Puerto Ricans in the Bay area. The first formal meeting was held in 1953 at the Drued Hall in San Jose. The President was Pedro Romero. In 1956 the number of members increased to 18 under the leadership of Jorge Piñeiro. The organization of various social activities was the focus of the group. In 1958 the group was presided by Juan Cortés and in 1960 by Edwin Betancourt. In 1962, under the leadership of Juan (Tin) Miranda the club created a women softball team who won two championships. Leadership opportunities were designed to involve the youth.
In 1964 the group was presided by our first female president, Conchita Barlotomé.In 1966 the club was presided by Adolfo McGovert Jr. In 1967 the club was registered as a social club. Bylaws and procedures to conduct meeting were develop. For the following years there were several presidents such as Blanca Piñeiro, Darnley de Castro, Juan Miranda, Jorge Piñeiro, Andrés Ortiz, Nora Flores, and others. The club raised $10,000 with the idea of getting a hall. The Club used to have youth and adult baseball teams, beauty pageants, trips, and a lot of other activities and fundraisers.The governor of Puerto Rico once visited our Club members back in the sixties.
In the early nineties, there were approximately 30 members at each meeting, there was always a lot of food, drinks, and cards and domino playing. Also cultural videos were watched as a group. The Club used to have a youth group named “Los Boricuas”, under the leadership of a young and energetic Puerto Rican school teacher named Franklin Collazo. This group used to learn about Puerto Rican culture while the general meetings were held. They had fundraisers and other activities. Los Boricuas even got to go to Puerto Rico, paid by the money they raised, with the help of our Club, and their parents.
Johnny Saldivia became the acting president in 1993, when the elected president Jennie Santana, couldn’t return to the meetings due to work issues. Johnny served as president through 2001. His main focus was to lift the club which at one time only had two members present at a meeting, including him. A lot of people had moved out of California, passed away, retired, etc. Under Johnny’s leadership, the bylaws were revised again and translated into English in order to include more people. It was no longer required to be Puerto Rican or married to one to join our Club. Business cards were made, distributed, and placed on strategic places; announcements were placed in newspapers, an email account was created and a voicemail number was obtained. Eventually a strong group of Boricuas came into the picture and the club took off.
2002 - 2003
Perseverance had its fruits and Celina Arauz became the president in 2002, and reelected in 2003. In 2002 President Celina Arauz developed a 5-year plan, with the help of Mayra Cruz, which focused on the evaluation of the social, civic, and cultural components of the organization. In 2003, Celina was able to get our club a free website to further expand our opportunities. In 2004 and 2005 Mayra Cruz led the organization. The first steps to create a 501(c)(3) arm (CEMI) were taken and the strategic planning continued. In 2006 and 2007 Franklin Collazo was elected President. Reaching the 501 (c)(3) was the main goal.
2005 - 2010
In 2008, Gretza Roman was elected President after serving as Vice President since 2007. Her main goal was to finally obtain the 501(c)(3) status which recognizes the organization as a non-profit organization. PRCC filed the application for non-profit in May 2005. In March of 2010, PRCC was finally awarded the 501(c)(3) status. This is a big accomplishment as we can now receive donations and the donors are able to claim it as a tax deduction. It took a lot of hard work but we made it.
For 2011, with a full Board, we are looking forward to growing our membership and being able to organize more events. Our main focus is still being able to raise funds for scholarships. We will continue to work with WRPRC at Dia de San Juan Festival which is our biggest fund raising event. New fund raising events are being scheduled such a domino tournaments, golf tournaments, picnics and others. In addition we are working with other organizations in our community to promote our culture and create awareness of issues that affect us.