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University of Arkansas at Little Rock

UALR to host San Antonio Mayor Castro

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock will host San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 17, in the Stella Boyle Smith Concert Hall in the UALR Fine Arts Building.

Julian Castro

Castro’s lecture will be “The Political Implications of Shifting Demographics in the 21st Century.”

The event is supported and presented through the Winthrop Rockefeller Distinguished Lectures series. It is free and open to the public; however, reservations are required by calling UALR at 501.569.3296.

A San Antonio native, Castro is the youngest mayor of a top 50 American city. At 26, he was elected San Antonio city councilman–the youngest in the city’s history–winning the seat his mother had lost 30 years before.

Castro was elected mayor in 2009 at age 34. He won reelection last year with more than 80 percent of San Antonio’s vote and delivered the keynote address at the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

In his convention speech, he shared the history of his family and the story of how his mother met his father while both were working as political activists in the early 1970s.

Castro and his identical twin brother, Joaquin, were born in 1974. They both received their undergraduate degrees from Stanford University then went to Harvard Law School. Soon after graduating from Harvard, Julián entered politics.

As mayor, Castro initiated the “Decade of Downtown” to revitalize the city’s urban core. His efforts to encourage inner-city investment have resulted in plans for the construction of more than 2,400 housing units by 2014.

Under his leadership, the city also opened Café College, a one-stop center offering guidance on college admissions, financial aid, and standardized test preparation to students in the San Antonio area. Café College served more than 5,000 area students in its first year. Castro also created SA2020, a nonprofit to create a “brainpower community” in San Antonio.

In March 2010, Castro was named to the World Economic Forum’s list of Young Global Leaders. Later that year, Time magazine placed him on its “40 under 40” list of rising stars in American politics. In 2011, the Milken Institute ranked San Antonio the nation’s top-performing local economy.

Castro serves on the board of directors of the National League of Cities, is a member of the Inter-American Dialogue and is an Aspen-Rodel Fellow. He has taught courses at The University of Texas at San Antonio, Trinity University, and St. Mary’s University.