Monday, January 11, 2010


The swearing-in of Rose Benavidez on Thursday afternoon, Nov. 19 as the new South Texas College trustee from Starr County was hailed by local dignitaries and STC leaders as an event that shows a ongoing and constant emphasis on continued strengthening of the college’s educational vitality.

Rose Benavidez is the daughter of the late Manuel Benavidez, Jr., who represented Starr County on the STC board from 1993 until his death in March 2009.

The swearing-in ceremony took place in the Auditorium of the STC Starr County Campus in Rio Grande City on Thursday, Nov. 19 at 5:00 p.m.

The oath of office was administered by Starr County Judge Eloy Vera. He stressed, “We thank the Benavidez family for sharing Manuel with us, and we thank you now for sharing Rose with us.”

Vera added, “This is a very special day for Starr County. She is a hard worker who gets things done and will get things done in this position. I know it means a lot for her to fill her father’s position.”

After being sworn in, Rose Benavidez commented, “This is an example of what the Starr County community thinks of South Texas College. The community continues to consider it vital that the mission of STC in Starr County gets done.”

She added, “I first contemplated this six or seven months ago. This is the beginning of a lot of hard work. I thank my family and my colleagues. I hope to leave my own footprint. I feel my knowledge from the past will be helpful.”

STC President Dr. Shirley Reed told Benavidez, “We look forward to working with you. We look forward to working to improve the lives of our students and our community.”

STC trustee Gary Gurwitz declared, “Manuel and I were the last of the original trustees. I knew he would only ask for something that he felt the people of Starr County truly needed.”

STC Board of Trustees President Mike Allen emphasized, “She has always shown the ability to connect business and jobs with education.” Starr County Industrial Foundation President Sam Vale stressed, “Rose has been focused on this (linking education with business) from the beginning.”

Bonnie Gonzalez commented, “It floors me when I see the growth in Starr County. Rose Benavidez is an integral part of what we are today and what we will be tomorrow. She is very well-versed on what the challenges are and the possible solutions.” Gonzalez is CEO of Workforce Solutions for Starr, Hidalgo and Willacy Counties.

“Growth comes through hard work, persistence and dedication,” insisted Rio Grande City Mayor Ruben O. Villarreal. “All of these traits are embodied in Rose Benavidez. She is determined to make difficult or unlikely projects work. I know that with her, success is assured for STC.”

As the ceremony concluded, Benavidez stressed, “Your belief that I am the right person for this position will forever be appreciated.”

Benavidez will serve the remaining two-plus years of the unexpired term left vacant by the passing of Manuel Benavidez, Jr. In their entirety, STC trustee terms cover a period of six years.

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