By 1930 he had been arrested several times for Communist organizing activities. He was ordered deported but he stayed in the United States after the Soviet Union refused to accept him.
He moved to California in 1921 and helped organize strikes in the agricultural industry in the Depression and in the Hollywood film industry after World War II.
Tribute to Ben Dobbs
On Sunday, June 7, 1981, the Los Angeles Chapter of the New American Movement sponsored a Tribute to Ben Dobbs for "His lifelong commitment to socialism". The event was held at the Miramar-Sheraton Hotel, Santa Monica, California. Sponsors of the event included Frank Spector.
- Tribute to Ben Dobbs program, June 7, 1981