José C. Pizarro was born in Santa Isabel, Puerto Rico on June 11, 1947. José came to Buffalo in 1969 to attend the University of Buffalo. While in college, José met his wife to be, Evelyn Munoz, a native of Buffalo. They were married on November 21, 1971. They have 3 children; Eva the oldest, Nadia and their son Christopher. They have 4 grandchildren; Anthony, Julian, Antonio and their little Peanut Arianna. They have a great grandson little Anthony.
Since his arrival in Buffalo, José has been involved in community advocacy and has worked to improve the quality of life for the Hispanic Community of Buffalo as well as the general population. As a student at the University of Buffalo, he was involved in the development of the Hispanic Student Organization PODER. During his tenure as President of PODER, he was instrumental in recruiting Hispanic students to UB, increasing the number of Hispanics accepted into the Medical, Dental and Law schools, as well as developing a summer orientation program for incoming Hispanic students.
When Mr. Pizarro left the University for the Community, he helped establish the Puerto Rican Chicano Committee (PRCC) an organization that advocated for the rights of the Hispanic Community. PRCC was instrumental in getting Hispanics into the building trades, pressured the County to hire more Hispanics through the creation of Bilingual tittles, advocated for the creation of Bilingual Education in the Buffalo school system, helped establish the Henry Morales Satellite Center for Adult Education, and helped establish the Roberto Clemente Health Center from just a storefront operation. PRCC received the Eleanor Roosevelt Award from Governor Mario Cuomo for its dedication and work with the members of the Hispanic Community.
Mr. Pizarro, along with his wife Evelyn, organized the first Women’s softball team in the City of Buffalo’s MUNY League; he was the first Hispanic to be hired as an aide to State Senator Anthony Masiello; and he was first to be appointed to serve as the Director of Urban Affairs on the staff of Mayor James D. Griffin. He was instrumental in the saving of Columbus Hospital a Community Hospital in the Hispanic Community (the most medically underserved area in Erie County). He was a main participant in having Mayor James D. Griffin and Councilmember James W. Pitts build the First Senior Citizens Center for the Hispanic Elderly.
Mr. Pizarro is presently the President of the Western New York Hispanic American Veterans Memorial, Inc., an organization that built a beautiful monument to honor all Western NY Hispanic Veterans who fought in all the wars that America was involved in.