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Ricardo Romo
UTSA President Ricardo Romo
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Bush appoints Romo to White House commission

By Marianne McBride Lewis
Director of Public Affairs

(Dec. 4, 2008)--Ricardo Romo, president of the The University of Texas at San Antonio, has been appointed by President George W. Bush to serve on a 23-member commission that will explore the potential of creating a national museum dedicated to American Latinos.

The Commission to Study the Potential Creation of the National Museum of the American Latino Act of 2007 was signed into law by Bush on May 8, 2008, and the White House announced Tuesday the names of seven commission appointees. The museum will showcase the arts, culture and history of the Latino community in the United States. Read more about the National Museum of the American Latino.

"I am honored to be appointed to this important commission," said Romo. "I've had a lifelong interest in the Latino community, particularly in the culture and arts, and look forward to working with fellow commission members to create an outstanding museum."

The commission is charged with organizing a national conference within nine months of being formed by bringing together stakeholders, experts, policymakers and other interested parties to discuss the museum's viability.

Additionally, they will develop a fundraising plan to create a public-private partnership within 18 months and produce a report to Congress within 24 months of the bill's passage with a recommended plan of action to take the museum from concept to reality.

According to excerpts from the executive summary of House Bill 512/Senate Bill 500, members of the commission were appointed because of their demonstrated commitment to the research or promotion of American Latino life, art, culture and history, and expertise in museum administration or fundraising.

A nationally respected urban historian, Romo is the author of "East Los Angeles: History of a Barrio," now in its ninth printing. As president of UTSA, an Hispanic-serving institution, Romo oversees the operation of two academic campuses that educate more than 28,400 students as well as UTSA's Institute of Texan Cultures, a downtown San Antonio cultural museum.

In 2002, Bush appointed Romo to the President's Board of Advisors on Historically Black Colleges and Universities, and in 2004, Romo was appointed as a U.S. representative to the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization.

Currently, Romo serves as vice chair of the board of directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, San Antonio branch.

The other six individuals appointed by Bush to the commission include Anna Regula Haug de Cablik of Georgia, Gilberto Cardenas of Indiana, Doreen M. Colon Camacho of Puerto Rico, Dorene C. Dominguez of California, Jose B. Fernandez of Florida and Patrick Alexander Lopez Negrete of Texas.

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