MACRI Talk - Henry Cisneros: The Making of a Mayor
Time & Location
About the event
Join MACRI for a free virtual film screening and plática with Henry Cisneros and Oscar Garza. Forty years ago, on April 4, 1981, Henry Cisneros made history becoming the first Mexican American mayor of San Antonio in modern times and the first Mexican American mayor of a major US city. That same year, Oscar Garza, then a producer at the local PBS station KLRN, created a documentary film on the historic achievement. We will stream the film Henry Cisneros: The Making of a Mayor, and then have a conversation about Cisneros' legacy and the current state of Mexican Americans in politics.
Oscar Garza is a Senior Editor at KPCC (NPR) in Los Angeles. He was a Senior Editor for 15 years at the Los Angeles Times; a columnist and Arts Editor at the San Antonio Light; and a Senior Producer at KLRN in San Antonio, where he wrote, produced and directed a documentary about Henry Cisneros' 1981 mayoral election. He is a proud native of San Antonio's South Side.
Henry Cisneros, former mayor of San Antonio (1981-89), was the first Latino to serve as mayor of a major U.S. city in the 20th-century. During his four terms as mayor, he helped rebuild the city’s economic base and spurred the creation of jobs through massive infrastructure and downtown improvements.
From 1993 to 1997, Cisneros served as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Bill Clinton. In that capacity, he worked for fair housing and against mortgage discrimination. As the President’s chief representative to the nation’s cities, Cisneros worked in more than 200 U.S. cities from all 50 states.
Today, Cisneros is a principal of Siebert Cisneros Shank and the founder and chairman of Cityview companies. He remains active in San Antonio’s leadership, where he is the former Chairman of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation, the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and BioMed SA. He is a former member of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Cisneros holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Texas A&M University. He earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University and a Doctorate in Public Administration from George Washington University. He served as an infantry officer in the United States Army. Cisneros is married to Mary Alice P. Cisneros, who from 2007 – 2011 served on San Antonio’s City Council. They have three children and four grandchildren.