An Autumn Magic Show
El Paso Museum of History Presents
An Autumn Magic Show
The El Paso Museum of History, located at 510 North Santa Fe Street, is pleased to present Fall into Magic: a Celebration of Autumn. Join magician Bob King on Saturday, September 21, 2013 at 2 p.m. in the museum Seminar Room. Come see feats that will astound and amaze you!
With the start of school and summer beginning to wane, everyone looks forward to the cool temperatures of autumn. Spirits are regenerated as the smell of wood smoke fills the air. The cottonwood trees are changing colors and suddenly the air is filled with magic. Bob King will help set the mood for you as he performs magic tricks that will keep you mystified as well as howling with laughter.
Bob King has been in the business of magic since he was eleven years old. For a year and a half he hosted a television show on local Channel 4 entitled The Soda Fountain which ran everyday Monday through Friday. At one point in his career, he became Ronald McDonald, the famous clown for McDonald’s hamburgers. As the only Spanish speaking Ronald in the system Bob was invited to make appearances at McDonald’s restaurants throughout Central America.
For more information and to reserve a seat, contact Sue Taylor at 915.351.3588 or email@example.com.
THE KUGLER ERA- UTEP FOOTBALL
The Kugler Era has finally arrived. UTEP showed a strong offense in this 42-35 loss to UNM. Everyone was nervous about this game setting the tone for the season. The end result was a loss but it was a hard fought loss that proved UTEP has a lot of talent and should be competing with anyone in the newly changed Conference USA. Coach Kuglers first game as a Head Coach needs work on defense. Defense plagued miner teams were a big part of Mike Price’s time here. The first game jitters are gone so lets see how the Miners do this weekend against the Aggies on defense.
UTEP was behind much of the game but then finally took the lead 28-21 in the 4th. Jameill Showers had a great game completing 15 out of 20 passes. He also had 119 yards with zero interceptions. Freshmen Aaron Jones finished the game with 127 rushing yards. Both were not enough for a Miner squad trying to gel with what is pretty much a new team with new leaders. Both UTEP newcomers are showing promise for a very optimistic season.
The next game for UTEP is against rival New Mexico state which should be an easy game. Although NMSU looks soft, you can never count out a team at home during a rivalry game. This game will be at this saturday(Sept 14th) at 6pm at NMSU. Next week the Miners start conference play against C-USA newcomer UTSA. The roadrunners are lead by former University of Miami coach Larry Coker.
Mayor and First Lady Make First Charitable Donation
Mayor Oscar Leeser was happy to announce that First Lady Lisa Leeser has selected the Children’s Grief Center of El Paso as the first non-profit that will receive a donation as part of their newly created charity. The Mayor and First Lady’s charity was created after the Leeser’s committed to donate his mayoral salary during the Inaugural Ceremony in June. The presentation took place in the Mayor’s office on Wednesday, September 4, 2013.
UTEP Climbs to #7 in National University Rankings
The University of Texas at El Paso has broken into the Top 10 of a national ranking focused on “true public interest” and based on social mobility, research and community service.
Washington Monthly announced today that UTEP will be rated #7 overall in its 2013 College Rankings to be published Sept. 4. The University, which begins its 2013 fall semester today, is ranked between Stanford (#6) and Harvard (#8).
UTEP moved up five slots from the previous year and earned the top spot in the social mobility category for the second year in a row. Social mobility is described as recruiting and graduating students of modest means, and is a measure of how well “the school performs as an engine of social mobility.” The research component includes annual expenditures (in excess of $76 million) and the number of undergraduates who continue to earn doctoral degrees. The service rating is based on how students are taught to give back to the community whether through volunteer hours or participation in community service organizations, including ROTC.
“We are extremely pleased with the latest Washington Monthly rankings because they reflect the growing national validation of the important work that has been under way at UTEP,” President Diana Natalicio said. “This ranking recognizes UTEP’s success in fulfilling our public research university mission by successfully offering both access and excellence to the highly talented and mostly first-generation Hispanic students we serve.
“Achieving both affordability and high quality in a low-resource setting such as the U.S.-Mexico border region requires a deep commitment by all faculty and staff to ensure that students who entrust us with their aspirations are given every opportunity not only to pursue them, but to participate in enriched educational experiences on our campus that will prepare them to compete successfully with their peers from across the globe,” President Natalicio added. “As we celebrate UTEP’s Centennial next year, we’re looking forward to continuing to serve as a model and catalyst for change in public higher education in the 21st century.”
President Natalicio will participate in a Sept. 4 panel discussion organized by Washington Monthly to discuss higher education issues reflected in the rankings.
In its introduction to the rankings, the magazine’s editors praised UTEP for enrolling – and graduating – a large number of low-income students. More than half of UTEP’s almost 23,000 students – 12,116 – received a Pell Grant during the 2012-13 academic year, and 75 percent received some form of financial aid.
“Our rankings aim to identify institutions that are acting on behalf of the true public interest,” the editors wrote. They later added that UTEP enrolls “large numbers of low-income students and graduates more of them than the economic and academic profiles of their students would predict, while charging the kind of affordable tuition that is increasingly rare.”
This is the eighth year that the publication, an investigative, system-analysis periodical based in Washington, D.C., has produced college rankings. The magazine says the rankings reward schools for, “among other things, recruiting and graduating students of modest means – in conscious contrast to the U.S. News & World Report.”
To view the complete listings, visit the magazine’s “2013 College Rankings.”
SS Maikol Gonzalez Named Hitter of the Week
The official statistician of the American Association, Pointstreak, has announced that El Paso Diablos SS Maikol Gonzalez, 27, has been named this week’s Pointstreak Hitter of the Week.
The Maracaibo, Venezuela native is in his third year as a Diablo. Five consecutive multi-hit games meant Gonzalez essentially ran away with this week’s top hitting honors. The shortstop and leadoff hitter was a spectacular 17-for-24 (.708) at the plate, batting from the leadoff position. Gonzalez doubled five times, tripled once and drove home four runs.
Easily the most impressive game for Gonzalez was on Wednesday against Laredo. In the highlight of the week, Gonzalez went 5-for-5 with a pair of doubles, a pair of RBI and a walk. The Diablos lost the ballgame, but won four of their six games this week, largely thanks to the shortstop’s bat.
The last homestand of the 2013 season is here. The Diablos will be playing consecutive home games at Cohen Stadium, Tuesday, August 20th through Sunday, August 25th. For promotions, live updates, contests and more “Like” our Facebook Page (facebook.com/elpasodiablos), or follow us on Twitter (twitter.com/epdiablos).
For more information, please visit diablos.com or call (915)755-2000.
Best in the Nation, Socorro High School NJROTC
Back in June, the Socorro High School NJROTC became best in the nation, being named the Most Outstanding Unit by the U.S. Navy League. Two years ago, Socorro came in 3rd in the nation based on a wide variety of accomplishments such as Navy exams, community service, physical teams and color guards. Not one to rest on their laurels, and under the tutelage of school commander, Senior Naval Science Instructor Michael Morales and the rest of the NJROTC teachers, the unit regrouped and came back stronger than ever, beating more than 600 NJROTC units from across the nation.
Last Friday, the Downtown Lion’s Club honored the unit with a Certificate of Appreciation for their service and their accomplishment. Morales, along with his senior student officers at Soccorro, Senior Cadet Commanding Officer Jose Arreola and Lt. Commander Joseph Perez attended the festivities. The NJROTC (Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps) is a Navy based high school program that teaches students about military service and prepares them for higher education in any military service or college. Many of the students do, but are not required to, enter Navy enlistment.
Morales touted the many accomplishments that the unit has accumulated in the past year, which is in addition to the history of excellence in the Socorro program over the past two decades. Morales was especially proud of how much the students do that is above and beyond their neccessary duty, specifically when it comes to community service. As a matter of fact, Morales said that he was “warned” by the officer who recruited him for the position that Socorro normally does much more than expected, so expectations were high. Morales showed that although only 3500 yearly hours need to be done by the end of the school year, his unit racked up over 9000 hours that were further organized into the following categories: people oriented service, community service, and environmental service. “I never have to worry if I’m going to have enough kids to go to a function. Where some other schools may bring carloads or vanloads, we bring busloads of students.”
“We don’t have to hassle the kids about being wherever they’re supposed to be for an assignment or practice.” When asked when he knew his work was cut out for him as the lead instructor, Morales told the story of a competition in Kansas City where the students were outside in extreme conditions at night-time practicing to get their skills perfect…without having to be told to. “They were leading themselves.”
Both student commanders stood at attention throughout the ceremonies and during the interview and remained poised and professional in their answers and in their demeanor. Battalion Commander Arreola plans to join the Navy after graduation and into the Navy Combat Expeditioniary Unit and Lt. Commander Perez, a high school junior, plans to join the Marines and specialize in Weapons Design. Arreola, who has a 94 gpa, says that its not hard to get kids to join, showing that the NJROTC also helps students prepare for college. Lt. Commander Perez hopes to continue the legacy into the future and keep Socorro in the national spotlight. Arreola hopes to be able to come back in the future as an officer and see that Socorro has exceeded even his lofty expectations.
New Media King?
Up until a few years ago no one knew whom Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com was, today he is well known not only because of Amazon and the countless other products and services he has developed such as the popular Kindle e-reader or the streaming movie service or the huge cloud hosting products and services offered by Amazon. Now Bezos will be the sole owner of The Washington Post and other affiliated publications after the $250 million sale announcement on Monday. The sale is expected to officially close later this year. The purchase was made solely by Bezos and does not involve Amazon.
“I, along with Katharine Weymouth and our board of directors, decided to sell only after years of familiar newspaper-industry challenges made us wonder if there might be another owner who would be better for the Post (after a transaction that would be in the best interest of our shareholders),” said Post Chairman and CEO Donald Graham in a press release. (The Graham family has owned a controlling stake in the Post since the 1930s.) “Jeff Bezos’ proven technology and business genius, his long-term approach and his personal decency make him a uniquely good new owner for the Post.”
The deal includes the Washington Post, as well as the Express newspaper, the Gazette Newspapers, Southern Maryland Newspapers, Fairfax County Times, El Tiempo Latino and Greater Washington Publishing.
The Washington Post Co. will keep Slate magazine, TheRoot.com and Foreign Policy, as well as its Kaplan for-profit education division and its broadcast and cable operations.
In a letter to the Post staff, Bezos wrote:
There will of course be change at The Post over the coming years. That’s essential and would have happened with or without new ownership. The Internet is transforming almost every element of the news business: shortening news cycles, eroding long-reliable revenue sources, and enabling new kinds of competition, some of which bear little or no news-gathering costs. There is no map, and charting a path ahead will not be easy. We will need to invent, which means we will need to experiment. Our touchstone will be readers, understanding what they care about – government, local leaders, restaurant openings, scout troops, businesses, charities, governors, sports – and working backwards from there. I’m excited and optimistic about the opportunity for invention.
Only time will tell how this purchase will pan out, but if any indication shows the new Washington Post will certainly be a big portion of the digital news world. If all fails then what’s $250 million to a billionaire anyway?
Bikers Stop at Providence Children’s Hospital During 6th Annual Fundraiser
Providence Children’s Hospital (PCH) saw over 100 bikers cruising through their front parking lot during the 6th Annual Candlelighter’s/Black Widows MC Bike Run, an event to help fund the El Paso Candlelighter’s organization. The bikers visited briefly with children at PCH on their way to other locations around the city. Our patients got to sit on the bikes and meet and greet the bikers as they cycled through. The 6th annual bike run pass through the front parking lot of Providence Children’s Hospital, 2001 N. Oregon on July 28th, 2013.
“We are very excited to welcome the participants of this bike run to our hospital. I’m sure the children will be delighted to hop on the bikes and talk to the bikers. By helping out a great organization like Candlelighters shows that caring and compassionate people can come from all walks of life. They truly are making a difference in our community,” said Nancy Arambasick, Executive director of Providence Children’s Hospital.
The changing face of fitness
Story and photos by: Ricky J. Carrasco
According to recently released social media data, El Paso is one of the top cities in the country to talk about fitness related topics. Fitness has not always been popular in El Paso, but there has been an emergence of it in recent years. Everyday more information comes out about the health benefits of physical activity: reduction of weight, reduction in blood pressure, aiding in diabetic symptoms, reduced possibility of heart conditions, and the list goes on. Working out has always been a staple of men, but recently, El Paso women have had many more opportunities to work out. Women feel it is now more socially acceptable to bust a good sweat using a variety of methods.
Jesus Mar manages the Pan-American Roca Fitness. Roca/EP Fitness gyms are probably the most popular gym chain in El Paso, claiming over 90,000 clients in 9 locations. He attributes the recent popularity of fitness to the diversity of options, “There are a variety of classes now like Zumba, yoga, pilates and it’s now more socially acceptable to workout (for women). Many guys used to be intimidated to see girls working out. More people are simply more health conscious.”
Cindy, 20, is a client who became more health conscious after her pregnancy. She says that she was introduced to the gym by her male friends. At first, she only did the cardio machines, but learned by watching what the men were doing at the weight section. “I’ve lost about 15 pounds, but I’ve also gained muscle. Simply seeing progress is my goal.” Cindy states that even though she could barely lift the Olympic bar when she started, she can now do a 100 lb squat.
Halina, 21, is another lady that attends Roca. She is also self-taught and is proud to do weight workouts that were previously thought to be male oriented. “I’ve improved because I’ve actually gained weight, going from about 100 lbs to 120 lbs.” Though she is a bit more toned than a typical lady her age, she works out for strength and definition, boasting a 135 lb bench press and 185 lb deadlift. She states that she has had problems with others understanding her enthusiasm for fitness. “Guys can be more understanding of a girl being fit, though it has taken away some potential dates. Girls sometimes think I’m too strong and I don’t fit the feminine stereotype.” She says that, in the end, ladies have to love who they are, but also take care of themselves.
An option that is geared more towards women is the Zumba studios that deliver a cardio workout based on dance. Vanessa Marquez owns Dance Life Studios, and has also lost weight using Zumba methods. “Women in El Paso are beginning to feel empowered to better themselves. Zumba incorporates dance which many women may already be accustomed to. When you have fun with your workout, your self-confidence is boosted and the improvements will come.” Vanessa, like the other trainers interviewed, espouses the need for a lifestyle change, rather than a quick fix, like crash diets.
Sofia is one of Vanessa’s clients and an example of that lifestyle change that incorporated Zumba. Sofia has lost 80 pounds over the last year, though she says she wasn’t good at sports or even dancing. She says even though she was “forced” to go her first time to Zumba, she is now an instructor. “There’s been more awareness about diabetes and heart disease, so there’s more of an incentive to begin exercising. Women, I think, gravitate towards dance, so it’s easier to come in and start right away. Vanessa and the other instructors are real good to emphasize an overall fitness plan, but having fun makes it easier to do stick to the plan.”
Jason Brison, a trainer at PUSH Fitness, looks over his clients and, with a smile, gently corrects and encourages them. Jason trains his clients in Crossfit, a high intensity workout that combines calisthenics with weight training. He has seen the recent upsurge in fitness activities and believes that the key to success is education. “El Paso is starting to see the value of a gym membership. We have dedicated clients who support one another.” Jason has a UTEP degree in Kinesiology and believes that helps him with his clients. “Properly educated trainers help prevent injury and debunk myths.”
One of those myths is that weight training for women will make them “bulky,” but the ladies who train at PUSH know that’s just a misconception. Yvette, 41, says that when she first came in, she couldn’t do a single push up. Now, a set of 100 pushups can be incorporated into a single workout session. Clients like Jesse, 26, say that part of the reason she came to this gym was not necessarily to be athletic, but merely to learn and to feel accomplishment.
Crossfit at any other time might have been a male dominated, but more women see it as an option. Suracy, 20, began PUSH after her pregnancy. “I had gained 80-90 pounds, of which I’ve lost 60 so far. I had diabetes, I had high blood pressure due to the pregnancy and weight gain. Now, I can do pullups and many other things I couldn’t do before. I think fitness in El Paso has evolved. People are tired of the heart disease, tired of being overweight, tired of being sick. People have seen the benefits of exercise.” As a by-product of her training, Suracy is now also training as an amateur MMA fighter, another male dominated spot, something she says would have been unbelievable a year ago.
The key to a better lifestyle begins with simply making the decision to live in a healthier manner, and then educating yourself about your own health. There are now more options than ever for exercise, whether it is in a traditional gym or a specialty gym or even if you want to strike out on your own. Like Tamara, who attends PUSH, says, “It is now more socially accepted that women are going to be independent and fit. For ladies who are starting out, I would at least invest in a trainer at the beginning.” Part of that independence is each person discovering what is best for themselves in a sustainable diet and exercise program, then finding the resources to make it happen.
Danza de los Voladores de Papantla
The El Paso Museum of Archaeology Presents
A Special Event for El Paso: Danza de los Voladores de Papantla | Dance of Papantla’s Flyers
The renowned Voladores de Papantla from the state of Veracruz, Mexico, who are famous for their daring performances which take place high above the ground, are coming to the El Paso Museum of Archaeology on August 3rd. A group of five Totonac Indians perform a ritualistic dance atop a 70 foot high pole. One stays at the top playing a flute and drum while the remaining four descend to the ground head first with the aid of ropes tied around their bodies. The ropes unwind 13 times for each of the four flyers as they circle the pole, symbolizing the 52 year calendrical cycle.
Due to this unique all day event, the museum and grounds will be open only for this event from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm for the very low entry fee of $5.00 per person (free to children age 6 and under). This fee includes two performances of the Voladores de Papantla one at 10:00 am and one at 2:00 pm, additional entertainment by local music and dance groups, refreshments, and access to the museum’s galleries. Scheduling of the entertainment and other details will be announced soon.
The dance of the Voladores de Papantla has become characteristic of the Totonac culture of the state of Veracruz and represents part of Mexico’s national patrimony. The dance is not only remarkable for its uniqueness and preservation of ancient calendrical elements, but also because it has survived into modern times. Over 1,500 people saw the first ever El Paso performances of the Voladores de Papantla in October 2008 at the El Paso Museum of Archaeology.
The Friends of the El Paso Museum of Archaeology are sponsoring this great contribution to El Paso and our regional community. LEON’S Production Sound’s is the major event sponsor. Additional sponsors at this time are El Paso Museum of Archaeology, El Paso International Airport, El Paso Electric, the Franklin Mountains Rotary Club, Trans-Pecos Chapter of the Texas Master Naturalist, Dr. Richard Teschner and Carol Baker.
Saturday, August 3, 2013, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
Museum Location: El Paso Museum of Archaeology, 4301 Transmountain Road, El Paso, Texas 79924 in Northeast El Paso
Sierra Providence Health Network Celebrates Providence Memorial Wound Care Open House
Sierra Providence Health Network (SPHN) celebrated the Heal This Open House of the newly remodeled Center for Wound Care & Hyperbaric Medicine at Providence Memorial Hospital, on Wednesday, July 10 at 10 a.m. at 2101 N. Oregon (located next door to Providence Children’s Hospital). Wound Care Center physicians, certified technicians and staff were on hand to answer questions, and guests had access to the cutting-edge Hyperbaric Oxygen Healing chambers (HBO) used for wound healing.
Providence Memorial Hospital Wound Care Center has partnered with Healogics, the nation’s leading wound care management company that works with a hospitals across the nation, bringing them innovative technologies such as Hyberbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBO) management, negative pressure therapies, and biosynthetics to insure that patients receive the best and most innovative treatment available.
“We are excited to open our doors to our community and showcase our renovated center, our excellent team of physicians and staff specializing in wound care,” said Eddie Luna, Program Director. “Our ultimate goal is to restore the patient’s quality of life by providing them with the most advanced wound care options available in the El Paso region.”
For over 20 years, Providence Memorial Hospital has been providing wound care services. Now we are celebrating the remodeling and expansion of the Center for Wound Care & Hyperbaric Medicine at Providence Memorial Hospital with the addition of the Hyperbaric Oxygen Healing chambers (HBO). The Wound Care Center diagnoses, tests, and treats chronic and non-healing wounds through the use of specialized treatment programs.
It is estimated that about 8 million people in the United States suffer from chronic wounds. Those likely to be candidates for wound care treatment at the Providence Memorial Hospital Wound Care Center are those suffering from diabetic and pressure ulcers, burns, infections, radiation wounds, and wounds that have not healed within 30 days.
About Sierra Providence Health Network:
Sierra Providence Health Network includes Sierra Providence East Medical Center, Sierra Medical Center, Providence Memorial Hospital and Providence Children’s Hospital. The Network also offers a wide range of outpatient services including Sierra Providence TotalCare, Sierra Providence Urgent Care Centers, Sierra Providence Trawood Center and ER, Sierra Teen and Women’s Centers, Wound Care Centers and Sierra Providence Sleep Disorders Center.
Go Forth This July: Set One Goal, and Make It Happen
By Marilynn Preston
Except for the firecrackers, I pretty much like everything associated with the Fourth of July.
Lively summer gatherings with family and friends, a chance to practice deep breathing and anger management.
Patriotic parades honoring brave men and women who fight for our freedom while struggling to fend off sexual assault from fellow soldiers.
And let’s not forget the July food fests: the corn roasts, the watermelon feeds, the sustainable, attainable, mostly organic picnics where all guests leave their cellphones in the car.
This July Fourth I want to celebrate your freedom to create a healthier, happier lifestyle for yourself. In the words of the esteemed LL Cool J, “Stay focused, go after your dreams, and keep moving toward your goals.”
SET ONE GOAL. Remember your first KISS? Keep it simple, stupid. This summer, set one healthy lifestyle goal for yourself, something that’s been bouncing around your brain, something non-sedentary that interests you and might make you sweat.
This requires thinking, which requires stopping all that you are doing, sitting quietly and creating a mental picture of yourself, in the near future, living a calmer life that feels healthier, happier, more satisfying. Where are you? Who’s with you? What are you doing?
Maybe you’re working in a community garden, growing a tomato plant with your son, so he knows they’re not meant to come out of plastic tubes, taste-free.
Or perhaps your mind’s eye pictures you kite surfing, floating through the air in a blissful, weightless way that lifts your spirits and gets your adrenaline flowing, because that’s what adventure sports do so well.
Or maybe you see yourself pedaling your bike around a peaceful little lake, and your goal for the end of September is to ride your bike 30 miles in one day, without it becoming a near-death experience.
Your summer goal needs to come from you. A trainer or coach who sets healthy lifestyle goals for you is of limited value, long term, because you learn much more from what you say than from what you hear.
In fitness, as in relationships, telling another person what to do is not a clever way to change behavior. What works better — according to experts in behavior modification — is to set your own goal, own it, write it down and be very specific.
GIVE YOURSELF THE NEXT THREE MONTHS. Once you decide on a meaningful goal, give yourself July, August and September to make it happen. Some people can change overnight. One day you’re eating burgers five times a week; the next day you fall in love with kale. Others think they can’t change at all, even though they keep trying.
Don’t try, Yoda told us. Just do. Three months is long enough to create a new habit, and short enough to hold your interest. Be sure to keep a journal going, to record your successes and your setbacks (let ’em go!), and keep you focused and positive.
SET WEEKLY GOALS. Once you have your three-month goal, think about what you need to do, beginning this week, to move you in that direction. Start where you are. Let’s say your goal is to ride your bike 30 miles for a charity event in September. Right now, the farthest you can go is 12 miles. Ride the 12, and check in with yourself. Re-energize with water and a snack. Take a short rest. Get back on, and see how it feels to go another 10-20 minutes. Play with your resistance to doing more. Your weekly goals need to be S.M.A.R.T.: specific, measurable, action-oriented, realistic and timelined.
Here’s an example of a vague, useless goal: “I’m going to eat healthier next week.” The S.M.A.R.T. version, from my own journal of 1988: “I’m going to eat a big green salad for lunch four days this week, and it’ll include organic tomatoes from the farmer’s market, feta, olives, garbanzos and capers, dressed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. ”
Make this July Fourth an explosive one. Set one big goal for three months from now, and create weekly S.M.A.R.T. goals to get you there. And don’t let anything rain on your parade.
ENERGY EXPRESS-O! TED TELLS THE TRUTH
“A man has to have goals — for a day, for a lifetime — and that was mine, to have people say, ‘There goes Ted Williams, the greatest hitter who ever lived.'” — Ted Williams
Marilynn Preston — fitness expert, well-being coach and speaker on healthy lifestyle issues — is the creator of Energy Express, the longest-running syndicated fitness column in the country. She has a website, http://marilynnpreston.com and welcomes reader questions, which can be sent to MyEnergyExpress@aol.com
COPYRIGHT 2013 ENERGY EXPRESS, LTD.
Oscar Leeser sworn in as mayor
Story and photos by: Ricky Jimenez Carrasco
After 8 years under John Cook, Oscar Leeser was sworn in as El Paso’s new mayor on Monday at a special ceremony at the Plaza Theater. He, along with several incumbent and newly elected representatives and judges, were greeted by several hundred well-wishers, family members and concerned citizens. Cook was in the audience and recognized by Leeser and others for his years of service to the city.
New officials included Oscar Leeser, who currently also serves as President of Hyundai of El Paso; Larry Romero, City Rep District 2, is owner of Romero Financial Services; Lily Limon, City Rep District 7, is a retired educator. Incumbents Emma Acosta and Carl Robinson, and Municipal Court Judges Richard Olivo, Maximino Daniel Munoz, and Odell Holmes were also sworn in.
Many of the newly elected officials brought close family to the swearing in ceremony to help celebrate. Leeser’s grandchildren, Dylan and Lucas Ramirez, helped lead the crowd in the pledge of allegiance before a member of the El Paso Fire Department sang the national anthem. Lily Limon brought her 87 year old grandmother and Emma Acosta brought three of her grandchildren to the stage.
All the speakers pledged their focus to deal with the many issues they have to tackle in the coming years. Leeser reiterated many of his campaign promises, including teamwork and transparency. His campaign raised over $300,000, including about $90,000 of his own money. He pledged to donate all $47,000 of his yearly salary that he would receive as mayor to charity organizations. The new mayor will lead city council meetings starting this week. Leeser introduced his wife, children and grandchildren to the audience, stating that “family is the most important thing in my life, and we have just expanded our family to the City of El Paso.”
Incumbents Emma Acosta, District 3, and Carl Robinson, District 4, will be returning to the council after winning in different styles. Acosta, who was accompanied by three of her grandchildren for her swearing-in, ran unopposed in the East side. She joked that it was an achievement to receive 100% of the vote. Robinson, on the other hand, ran a tight race that was decided by less than 30 votes. He stated that he “was living proof that every vote counts.”
Perhaps the loudest support came for new city representative Lily Limon in District 7. She thanked her many supporters and campaign workers, many in attendance. She recited an ancient Greek pledge that promised that she, “will never bring disgrace to our city by an act of dishonesty or cowardice…we will transmit this city no less, but greater and more beautiful than it was transmitted to us.”
Municipal Court Judge Odell Holmes stated, “We are lucky people who because of the trust of the voters of El Paso, we have the opportunity to use our best efforts to fulfill their expectations, but with opportunity comes responsibility to do our best to meet those expectations.”
The loudest ovation of the night came for incumbent Municipal Court Judge Maximino Daniel Munoz who started off by poking fun at the announced possible names for the coming Triple A baseball team. “I don’t believe anybody in El Paso looks like an Aardvark or a Sun Dog to me!…I’m going to pray that we don’t get stuck with any of those names at all!” He gave his own suggestion when he told the story of one of the names for the pioneers that came with Don Juan de Onate, “Los Adelantados”, Spanish for “the ones that go ahead and face the dangers…I’d rather be an Adelantado, than an Aardvark!” Munoz equated the City of El Paso to the Adelantados. ” We are strong! We are full of character, and we will make the city better!”