I had been working on a rather grand manifesto with which to launch elBlogo, but something kinda cool got in the way. And what kinda cool thing might that have been? The opportunity to photograph an incredible human being, that's what.
That's none other than Henry Gabriel Cisneros. His storied career has included stints as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Chair of the Housing Commission at the Bipartisan Policy Center, and Chief Operating Officer at Univision. He became San Antonio's first Hispanic mayor in nearly 150 years at the ripe age of thirty-freaking-three. Like I said, pretty incredible.
Mr Cisneros and his lovely wife Mary Alice - a former Council Representative in her own right - were addressing a fundraiser for a really cool non-profit called Communities in Schools of San Antonio, which does a fantastic job at helping disadvantaged youth complete their education and get into college. They awarded sizable scholarships to at least five kids that day; one of them literally wept.
There was no shortage of city dignitaries at this function. One personal highlight for me was meeting my city councilman, Alan Warrick, and congratulating him on his recent election victory. "Thanks, sir!" he told me when I mentioned I had voted for him. "I needed that vote!"
The keynote speaker that afternoon was CIS founder Bill Milliken, who spoke passionately about overcoming a misspent youth to create what became CIS in the late 70s. He robustly engaged Mr and Mrs Cisneros, fondly recalling their role in establishing CIS in San Antonio while Mr Cisneros was mayor. Ever loving and humble, Mr Milliken made absolutely zero mention that he had ever worked for not one, but three US presidents and a former State Secretary. By giants am I surrounded.
It often seems that our legislators are going out of their way to further alienate the marginalized. I'm grateful that organizations like CIS exist to counteract such misguidance.