A&M International Brings Top Lecturers Through A.R. Sánchez Lecture Series

Gifted lecturers on topics ranging from the environment to studies of the Holocaust will provide fresh perspectives for inquiring minds as part of the 1999-2000 A.R. Sánchez Sr. Distinguished Lecture Series at Texas A&M International University.

The Sánchez Series will introduce five lecturers, and community members are invited to attend the events free of charge. Each lecture will take place from 7 - 9 p.m. in the Great Room of the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library. The Sánchez Series begins in September.

Dr. Jerry Thompson, dean of the sponsoring College of Arts and Humanities, said the presenters will nourish minds and expand horizons for people of all ages and backgrounds by providing an insight into topics of wide social interest.

"Ever since the inception of the Sánchez Series, we have been fortunate to receive lecturers of exceptional caliber in numerous fields. This coming Sánchez Series is no exception. I encourage the community to attend all lectures and experience a journey only years of hard work and research can make possible," Thompson said.

The lecturers and the scheduled dates of presentation are:

* Sept. 14, 1999 - Jim Baca, currently mayor of the City of Albuquerque, N.M., will lecture on "The Conservation Fight in the American West." Baca will provide an insight into the struggle faced by environmentalists.

* Oct. 4, 1999 - Dr. David Weber, director of the William P. Clements Center for Southwestern Studies at Southern Methodist University, will lecture on "The Transformation of North America: Hispanic Legacies." Weber will discuss how North America came to adopt its present society borrowing aspects derived from Hispanic cultures.

* Nov. 8, 1999 - Dr. Andrés Tijerina, associate professor of history at Austin Community College, will lecture on "Before the Alamo: Tejanos and Texas Freedom." He will provide an in-depth look at how Tejanos created the generous land grant programs and initiated the ranching industry that would give Texas its hallmark character in the 19th century.

* Feb. 3, 2000 - Dr. Nicolas Shumway, director of the Institute of Latin American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, will lecture on "The Idea of Latin America." He will present an eye-opening view of Latin America informed by his experience with research interests ranging from history to cultural studies.

* April 4, 2000 - Dr. Marianne Hirsch, Parents Humanities Distinguished Professor at Dartmouth College, will lecture on "The Uses and Misuses of Holocaust Photographs." Her lecture will examine the widespread contemporary uses and misuses of Holocaust photographs, including images produced by artists and filmmakers in recent years. Through examples, she will explore the documentary and narrative value of camera images in the classrooms, museums and memorials, in literary and historical writing, and in artistic representation.

The A.R. Sánchez Sr. Distinguished Lecture Series at A&M International honors Antonio R. Sánchez Sr. (1916-1992). In the 1960s, after 20 years as the owner of an office equipment business, Sánchez began buying oil and gas leases and used his earnings to establish a bank. In 1974, Sánchez and his son, A.R. Sánchez Jr., along with geologist Brian O'Brien, established the Sánchez-O'Brien Oil and Gas Corporation (now the Sánchez Oil and Gas Corporation). The same year, the father and son team discovered the largest natural gas field in Webb and Zapata Counties to that point in history.

A.R. Sánchez Sr. is best remembered in Laredo for his philanthropic efforts. Known for his work ethic and generosity, he was a major crusader for a four-year University in Laredo and a supporter of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund. He was also a legendary Texas entrepreneur with a down-to-earth sense of humor.

This lecture series is presented through the vision and generosity of Mr. and Mrs. A.R. Sánchez Jr.

For further information, please contact the College of Arts and Humanities at 326-2460. University office hours are 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at pais@tamiu.edu