June 17, 2001

The National Council of La Raza (NCLR) announced that José Villarreal of San Antonio, Texas has been elected as Chair of the NCLR Board of Directors, a 32-member group made up of representatives of community-based organizations, the corporate sector, academia, and elected officials. The NCLR Board's 32 members represent the major Hispanic nationality groups and reflect the geographic distribution of the Hispanic population, and, by mandate, must be composed approximately equally of men and women. Mr. Villarreal succeeds Mr. Ramón Murguía, an attorney in private practice in Kansas City, Missouri, who has served as Board Chair since 1998.

Mr. Villarreal is currently a partner in the San Antonio office of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, L.L.P. specializing in public law, policy, and public finance. Mr. Villarreal has an extensive political and legal background having served most recently as National Treasurer for the Gore-Lieberman campaign. Mr. Villarreal holds a B.A. from Purdue University and a J.D. from the Indiana University School of Law.

Also elected as officers for the NCLR Board of Directors were: First Vice-Chair, Raymond Lozano; Manager, Community Affairs, Michigan Consolidated Gas Co., Second Vice-Chair Monica Lozano, President & COO, La Opinion; Secretary/Treasurer, Roger Cázares, President/CEO, MAAC Project; and Executive Committee member, Amancio J. Chapa, Jr., Executive Director, Amigos Del Valle, Inc.; Executive Committee member, Lillian Cruz, Executive Director, Humanidad, Inc.; and Executive Committee member, Yvonne Martínez Vega, Executive Director, Ayuda, Inc. Rita DiMartino, Vice President, Congressional Relations, Federal Government Affairs, AT&T, was named the first female Board Emeritus.

At the Spring 2001 Board of Directors meeting in Pasadena, California, eight new members were elected to serve. The new members are: Henry G. Cisneros, Chairman & CEO, American CityVista, San Antonio, TX; Irma Flores Gonzáles, former Board Chair, El Paso, TX; Hon. Phyllis Gutiérrez Kenney, Representative, 46th Legislative District, Olympia, WA; Antonia Jiménez, Vice President, Administrative Operations, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Somerville, MA; Arabella Martínez, former Board member and Executive Director, Spanish Speaking Unity Council, Oakland, CA; Ernesto "Gene" Ortega, Executive Director, Home Education Livelihood Program, Inc.; Cristina Saralegui, Journalist and host of "The Cristina Show"; Arturo Torres, former Board member and Chairman of the Board, Play By Play Toys & Novelties, San Antonio, TX.

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