Yvette Flores Diago was popular as the third wife of the Harlem Congressman Adam Clayton Powell Jr. She was the daughter of Gonzalo Diago, the mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico, in the early ‘40s. Yvette’s union with Clayton lasted about five years, but she hit the headlines in 1967 for illegally being on Clayton’s Congressional payroll for seven years. Keep reading to get more details on Yvette’s personal and professional life.
Yvette Flores Diago Bio
Yvette Flores Diago was born on 4 September 1931. Her father, Gonzalo Diago, was formerly mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico, in the 1940s. When she met Adam Calyton Powell Jr. in 1958, Yvette was working in the front office of a hotel in San Juan. She had also just divorced and was 27 years old.
They married in 1960 and had a son named Adam Clayton Powell Diago. The couple divorced five years later, in 1965.
Yvette Flores Diago Scandal
In 1967, two years after divorcing Clayton, a U.S. Congressional committee subpoenaed Yvette while investigating the potential theft of state funds since she was on her ex-husband’s payroll without working. Although she had moved back to Puerto Rico in 1961, Yvette admitted that she was still on the Congressional payroll of her husband. She received 20,578 until January 1967, when the committee exposed and fired her.
Since the scandal, Yvette Flores Diago lived a quiet life until she died on 7 October 2016, aged 85.
Yvette Flores Diago Children
Yvette Flores Diago was the mother of one child fathered by Adam Clayton Powell Jr., named Adam Clayton Powell Diago. They used his mother’s surname according to Hispanic tradition. However, her son moved to the mainland U.S. from Puerto Rico in 1980 and changed his name to Adam Clayton Powell IV. Why IV, you might ask: because his father had already had a son before him with his former wife, Adam Clayton Powell III.
Yvette’s son followed in his father’s footsteps and was an active politician, a former member of the New York State Assembly from 2001 to 2010. He has a son named Adam Clayton Powell V with his former wife, Andrea Dial, a former Ebony fashion fair model.
Yvette Flores Diago Husband
Yvette Flores Diago’s ex-husband was not only a politician but also a Baptist pastor. He was the second child of Mattie Buster Shaffer Adam Clayton Powell Sr., a pastor who developed the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, N.Y.
Clayton was the first African American elected to Congress from New York and served the people for nearly three decades (January 1945-January 1971) under the Democratic Party. He served as a spokesman on civil rights and social issues and urged the U.S. president to support emerging African and Asian countries post-colonialism.
Clayton’s first wife was singer Isabel Washington, whose son he adopted. After their divorce, he married jazz pianist and singer Hazel Scott with whom he had his first son, Adam Clayton Powell III. After his third wife, Yvette Flores Diago, Clayton did not marry again.
He got gravely ill in April 1972 and was flown to a Miami hospital, where he died from acute prostatitis on 4 April 1972.
Like most ex-spouses, Yvette Flores Diago’s fame was short-lived as it lasted the few years she was married to a famous person.