Mandy Pino was born in Mentmore, NM, a coal mining town outside Gallup NM. Her early life took place in the turbulent Labor struggle and strike of 1933 that involved the United Mineworkers of America (UMWA) as well as the more short-lived National Miners’ Union. Pino remembers the conflict and highly charged period where “dirty Bolsheviks” was a term leveled against the striking miners in picket lines. Describing herself as a radical Democrat, she shares a story of her politicization by association with the Quakers, Communist youth groups, and the Merrill Palmer Institute in Early Childhood Education in intercity Detroit. Pino continued political work in New Mexico as part of the Grassroots Democratic Committee starting in 1958. She is a current member of the NM Progressive Democrats of America Central NM chapter. Pino has spent a lifetime working on social justice issues focused on aging with dignity, affordable and accessible health care, and Labor justice concerns. Interview by Diane Pinkey.
The Working People's History of New Mexico Project (WPHNM) is an oral labor history project created to gather the labor stories of working people in New Mexico. While part of the interviews focus on the specific jobs that the interviewees performed, the interviews also explore labor-management relations as well as union, workers council, and social activism participation. The interviews contain information about family and social relationships and offer themes of social and historical interest in New Mexico and the US.