Category Archives: News

Leadership Edinburg Class Graduates

Leadership Edinburg Class XXX held its graduation celebration recently with friends, family, and staff at Bob’s Steak & Chophouse. The graduates join a group of more than 500 Edinburg citizens who have made their way through the Edinburg Chamber class to encourage a better Edinburg and help make a long-term impact. “Become servant leaders in your community,” said keynote speaker Ida Acuña-Garza to the graduates. “There are so many opportunities to…

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Community Debate Spurs Compromise

Brownsville’s Historic Battlefield Trail is a nine-mile hike-and-bike path that runs north and south through the middle of the city. (Courtesy)

The old railroad tracks heading northward from Brownsville were removed 10 years ago, crossing over some of the city’s busiest streets and setting off a decade-long debate between developers and emerging exercise enthusiasts. The debate at times grew heated between those wanting to create a new north-south thoroughfare and proponents advocating for a hike-and-bike trail to add to the miles of such trails currently crisscrossing all parts of the city.…

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Executive Program Benefits Nonprofits

UTRGV Executive Education program instructors Zoila Zambrano and Elaine Hernandez (Courtesy)

Nonprofit organizations typically form to address an area of need in the community. Leaders of those nonprofits are usually well-versed in the field they serve, but often not equipped with the knowledge and skills required to succeed on the business side of helping people. Nonprofit leadership is the topic of the first in a series of executive education course offerings from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. “We want…

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Mission Expands Youth Opportunities

Mission community leaders joined together for the groundbreaking for the expansion of the city’s Bannworth Gym into a full Boys & Girls Club. (Courtesy)

The way Mission Mayor Armando O’Caña likes to tell it, it was out of the mouths of babes where Mission drew inspiration to expand the city’s Bannworth Gym into a full Boys & Girls Club unit. “Back about six years ago, maybe even five years ago to be exact, I had a fifth-grader from the Sharyland school district come up and he planted the seed,” O’Caña said. “’Why do I…

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Connecting Rural Areas to the World

Jeff Shooshtari introduced wireless internet services to the Rio Grande Valley when he established Twin Communications. (Courtesy)

Jeff Shooshtari started with one antenna atop the Chase Bank tower in downtown McAllen. It was 1997 and the beginning of Twin Communications of McAllen/Edinburg. It was then the era of dial-up to the Internet. Moving large volumes of data online was the province of large companies. What is commonplace today was a rarity 20 years ago when Shooshtari, an engineer by training, began with microwave technology to launch wireless…

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Nonprofit Las Huellas Expands Reach

Fundraiser attendees hold a plate of shrimp during Las Huellas’ Crawfish and Shrimp Boil fundraiser. (VBR)

Restoring the wild turkey population in the Rio Grande Valley has been the chief goal of Las Huellas of South Texas, but the now decade-old nonprofit organization has become a benefactor for many others. In the 10 years since it broke away from the National Turkey Federation, Las Huellas has given out close to $800,000 to nonprofit entities needing infusions of money to implement their programs. Organization that have benefited…

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Businesses Welcome Veteran Home

Miguel Simental wipes tears from his eyes in an emotional moment after he learned he had been chosen to receive a mortgage-free home. (Oskar Hernandez)

Verturo Construction owner Joey Holand wanted to help veterans. In 2016, Holand and his wife donated a hunting trip that reunited two combat-wounded veterans. The pair had been separated after their tours of duty. “That weekend changed me as a person,” Holand said. “It changed me on how we look at our veterans.” Holand’s company and other contractors, in partnership with H-E-B’s Operation Appreciation and the nonprofit Operation Finally Home,…

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Rich Border Heritage on Display

A display of some of the merchandise available in the gift shop at the Brownsville Historical Complex on East Washington Street. (VBR)

Many historians contend that Brownsville is the second most historic city in Texas, ranking behind only San Antonio. Facts to back up that claim abound, with the Brownsville Historical Association acting as a primary resource to discover that story. With a valuable arsenal of facts, information and buildings that open doors to the past, the association offers a look back to the original city founders, battles fought in this part…

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Nature Abides in Harmony

Timing is everything. If one needed even more reasons to visit South Padre Island, they are here. This summer, why not combine fun and education for the entire family? The South Padre Island Birding, Nature Center & Alligator Sanctuary now also boasts an alligator sanctuary, where visitors of all ages can discover something new and visit 50 contained alligators. The new home for what some consider nature’s most interesting and beautiful reptiles held a public event in…

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