Karsh Signature

Yousuf Karsh, master photographer of the 20th century

Cesar Chavez

Cesar Chavez, 1991

In redecorating the Oval Office, newly-elected President Biden placed a bust of labor icon Cesar Chavez behind the Resolute Desk.

Chavez (1927-1993) co-founded the National Farm Workers Association (NFWA), which later merged with the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC) to become the United Farm Workers (UFW) labor union.

In his book American Legends (Bulfinch Press, 1992), Karsh wrote of Chavez: “He stood in the doorway – rooted in the earth – framed by the visual symbol of the farm workers union. Quiet and of deep moral strength, he has wrought a revolution in fair wages, health benefits, and education.”

Other busts on display in President Biden’s office include Martin Luther King Jr, Rosa Parks, Eleanor Roosevelt and Robert F. Kennedy.