Closeup shot of Maestro Jose Montoya wearing sunglasses

Flor y Canto José Montoya Memorial Scholarship

This year, the National Compadres Network marks its 30th year anniversary when in 1988, a group of Chicano, Latino, Native and Raza men gathered for three days in a Círculo. Through sharing, reflection, laughter, and ceremony, the men reignited a generations-old fire and made a commitment to heal themselves, live as Hombres Nobles (Honorable Men), and to pass these teachings on to subsequent generations. Out of this gathering, came the National Compadres Network. Now 30 years later, our work continues to focus on the healing of not only men, but all our relations, and passing it on to the next generations. NCN has become a voice for racial and gender equity and justice, and a national resource for indigenous based training and capacity building for all communities of color.

ARTE AS HEALING: As part of our work based on the teachings of Maestro José Montoya, we acknowledge “arte” as Healing. Maestro José Montoya dedicated his life to acknowledging and lifting up the beauty and power of culture through art, poetry, music, activism, and spiritual ceremony. His life from the mountains of New Mexico and the fields of California’s Central Valley, to the halls of higher education, influenced all his work. His ability to re-craft words, create songs, and beautifully illustrate what it meant to be Chicano will remain as an example for generations.

Maestro José Montoya was part of many circles, but for over 25 years he was part of El Círculo de Hombres, which brought healing and support to thousands of men through the reintegration of ceremony, carnalismo, and kinship. He served on NCN’s Board of Directors, as the voice of the elders, since the organization’s inception. His contributions to the healing of youth, men, families, and communities will continue through the teachings he so generously shared and entrusted to all of us.

In Maestro José Montoya’s honor, NCN will award two $500 scholarships. The focus of the scholarship is “Flor y Canto,” which invites young artists to share their creativity.

APPLICATION:  The application includes submitting written responses and a creative piece that reflects the applicant’s culture and its beauty and healing strength. Both the written responses and creative piece will be considered when selecting the scholarships.

Written Responses: In one-page, please respond to the following items:

  • How my culture has been a source of strength and healing;
  • The way in which culture-rooted strength and healing has affected me personally, my family, and the broader community;
  • How I see culture as being part of my life as I develop my personal talents and gifts;
  • How the scholarship will support my educacíon/education.

Creative Piece: The creative piece can be a poem, song, sculpture, carving, video, photograph, or other creative expression and reflect their talent and cultural expression and/or identity.

WHO CAN APPLY:  Students (ages 13-26) currently enrolled in school and working to complete their education. Applicants will be invited to be showcased on NCN’s website, social media and as part our 30-year celebration.

WHERE TO SEND: The essay and creative piece (or a photograph of the piece if it cannot be emailed) can be sent to Anthony Guillean at National Compadres Network at [email protected]. Both essay and creative piece must be submitted before the application can be considered.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: The submission deadline is Friday, June 8, 2018. Awardees will be announced on Father’s Day, June 17.

MORE INFORMATION: Please contact Anthony Guillean at a[email protected] or at (213) 432-1741. Also, please visit our website at