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Annual Chavez Address Opens
Hispanic Heritage Month Events

Posted September 8, 2003

HOLLAND – The sixth annual Cesar E. Chavez Address on Wednesday, Sept. 17, will open a series of activities at Hope College in recognition of national Hispanic Heritage Month.

The public is invited to all of the events. Admission is free to most, including the opening keynote.

Dr. Ana Margarita “Cha” Guzman, who is president of Palo Alto College in San Antonio, Texas, and was formerly a senior advisor to the Secretary of Education during the Clinton presidency, will present “Hispanic Leadership in the 21st Century” as the Cesar E. Chavez Address on Wednesday, Sept. 17, at 7 p.m. in the DeWitt Center main theatre. Admission is free.

The college’s Latino student organization, “La Raza Unida,” is sponsoring a “Latino Food Festival” on Thursday, Sept. 18, from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the Phelps and Cook dining halls. Admission for the general public is $5, payable at the door.

The college’s Dialogue on Race and Latino Film series and the Tulipanes Latino Art & Film Festival will present “White Like the Moon” on Thursday, Oct. 9, at 7 p.m. in the Maas Center auditorium. An opportunity for audience discussion will follow. Admission is free.

Guzman, a native of Cuba, has been in educational administration for more than 15 years. While at the Education Department, she identified advances in promoting access in education for the Hispanic community, and worked with senior officers and program directors to ensure that all results that impact the Hispanic community are recognized. She was influential in creating a new vision for the role of technical education in maintaining the competitive viability of the U.S. workforce and identifying opportunities to make adult education more responsive to the Hispanic community.

Guzman also served as chair of President Clinton’s White House Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans from 1993 to 2000. In conjunction with the role, she was responsible for developing the publications “Our Nation on the Fault Line: Hispanic American Education” (1996), “Testing Hispanic Students in the United States: Technical and Policy Issues” (1999) and “What Works for Latino Youth” (2000).

She began her career in education as a teacher. She has been a principal of a middle school and was director of staff development for the Houston Independent School District. She has also served as associate chancellor for Academic Support Programs of the Texas A&M University System; program director for the Texas Alliance for Minority Participation (AMP); and a program officer at the National Science Foundation. In addition, she has served as president of the Texas Association for Bilingual Education (TABE) and is a member of the Texas Association for Chicanos in Higher Education (TACHE).

Immediately prior to becoming Palo Alto College’s first woman president in 2001, she was executive vice president for institutional advancement, administration and community relations at Austin Community College. She holds an Ed.D. in education from the University of Houston, a master’s in sociology from Texas Southern University in Houston and a bachelor’s in education from Stout State University in Wisconsin.

National Hispanic Heritage Month runs Monday, Sept. 15, through Wednesday, Oct. 15. Cesar E. Chavez, who died in 1993 at age 66, played a leading role in the 1960s in organizing the nation’s migrant farm workers, and was the first head of the National Farm Workers Association, later the United Farm Workers.

Cook Hall is located on 10th Street between College and Columbia avenues. The DeWitt Center is located on Columbia Avenue at 12th Street. The Maas Center is located on Columbia Avenue at 11th Street. Phelps Hall is located on Columbia Avenue at 10th Street.

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