Of Puerto Rican descent, Morales was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Esai Morales, Sr., a welder, and Iris Margarita (née Declet), a union activist involved with the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union. Morales began his pursuit of an acting career by attending the School of Performing Arts in Manhattan.
Morales has described himself as an "actorvist", primarily as one of the founders of the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, taking inspiration from his mother, who was an organizer for the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union. He is also interested in environmental issues and was a founding board member of E.C.O. (Earth Communications Office). In the February 28, 2007, all-star benefit reading of "The Gift of Peace" at UCLA's Freud Playhouse, he portrayed a hopeful member of a struggling immigrant family, and plays alongside actors Ed Asner, Barbara Bain, Amy Brenneman, George Coe, Wendie Malick, and James Pickens, Jr.. The play was an open appeal and fundraiser for passage of U.S. House Resolution 808, which sought to establish a Cabinet-level "Department of Peace" in the U.S. government, to be funded by a two percent diversion of the Pentagon's annual budget. Morales is a vegetarian. He and girlfriend Elvimar Silva had a daughter, Mariana Oiveira, on September 24, 2010. Morales's first name is frequently used in crossword puzzles because its rare construction (it is a four-letter word in English that is seventy-five percent vowels, including the first and last letters) makes it a prize for crossword constructors. One crossword clue website estimated that between 1994 and 2016, ESAI had been used as a crossword answer over 100 times in American papers such as The New York Times, The LA Times, and The Washington Post.
- ↑ http://www.starpulse.com/Actors/Morales,_Esai/Biography/
- ↑ http://www.buddytv.com/info/esai-morales-info.aspx
- ↑ http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20136678,00.html
- ↑ http://www.metacritic.com/person/esai-morales?filter-options=movies
- ↑ http://www.pbs.org/americanfamily/cast.html
- ↑ http://www.prweb.com/releases/2011/8/prweb8687155.htm
- ↑ http://www.greatertalent.com/EsaiMorales/
- ↑ http://www.thegiftofpeace.org/
- ↑ http://www.ivu.org/people/actors/morales.html
- ↑ http://crosswordtracker.com/clue/actor-morales/