Photo Credit: Maya Traditions

Today is Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), a holiday focused on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember those who have died.

In honor of Day of the Dead, we here at Global Exchange wish to remember our friend and ally Jane Mintz. Earlier this year, Jane received the award for Outstanding Service to the Fair Trade Community post mortem from the Fair Trade Federation, “in memory of Jane’s boundless commitment to changing the lives of women in Guatemala through the preservation of traditional weaving and the expansion of economic opportunities.”

Jane founded Maya Traditions, a Fair Trade wholesale business marketing Guatemalan handicrafts and legal foundation providing social services including women’s empowerment programs, health programs, and educational scholarships for their children.

Throughout the years, Global Exchange and Maya Traditions have worked side by side in the Fair Trade movement. Global Exchange Reality Tours participants have visited Maya Traditions weavers in Guatemala and our Fair Trade Stores proudly offer Maya Traditions products.

Jane with Medea Benjamin at a Global Exchange Store Event

Global Exchange Executive Director Kirsten Moller shared these thoughts about Jane:

When I think of community, I think of Jane Mintz –a deeply committed member of her community in Guatemala and in Noe Valley (a San Francisco neighborhood).

Jane was born with enough resources to be comfortable but she chose to commit them to her community, seeing education, health and fellowship over time to be her gift to give and Fair Trade to be the way she could keep it going.

She always had time to talk, to smile and to hear how you were and those exchanges were the currency, the investment that created real and long lasting community.

Photo Credit: Maya Traditions

You can find out more about Jane’s contributions here. For more about Dia de los Muertos and how to create your own altar, read the post Dia de los Muertos.

Jane Mintz, 1943-2009

Who are you remembering today?