News Column

100 Influentials 2008: Part 6

Oct. 2, 2008
100 Influentials 2008: Part 6

Eduardo Sanchez
Vice-President and Chief Medical Officer
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas
Mr. Sanchez, former commissioner of the Texas Department of State Health Services and the Texas Department of Health, joined Blue Cross Blue Shield in May. A graduate of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School at Dallas, he also holds a master's in public health from the University of Texas Health Science Center and a master's in biomedical engineering from Duke University.

Jose E. Sanchez
Asset Manager
Headquarters, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
As asset manager, Mr. Sanchez is responsible for developing, coordinating, and executing an integrated national plan and investment strategy for maintenance and recapitalization that improves the reliability and minimizes the risk of more than $200 billion in water resource infrastructure assets. From 1995 to 2005, Mr. Sanchez served as Research Hydraulic Engineer in the Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory at the Army Engineer Research and Development Center. He has bworked as consultant and technical advisor for several international research efforts in Central and South America.

Carmen Sigler
Provost and Vice-President for Academic Affairs
San Jose State University
Ms. Sigler, born and raised in Argentina, oversees seven colleges, the university library, and several research and administrative offices at San Jose State University. She is board chair of the Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley, which focuses on investing resources into the Hispanic community. With a Ph.D. in romance languages and literatures, Ms. Sigler is also on the board of the Montalvo Arts Center and Opera San Jose.

Ciro Sumaya
Dean of the School of Rural Public Health
Texas A&M University Health Science Center
A former four-year presidential appointee at the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, Mr. Sumaya earned his medical degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston more than 40 years ago. In February this year, he was appointed chairman of the board of directors of the National Hispanic Medical Association which represents 36,000 licensed Hispanic physicians.

Richard Tapia
Professor, Department of Computational and Applied Mathematics
Rice University
In 2005, Mr. Tapia was named University Professor, becoming only the sixth person and the first mathematician to hold this prestigious academic title in Rice's history. Born to Mexican immigrants in Los Angeles, Mr. Tapia was the first in his family to attend college, earning his B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. from UCLA. His department is a national leader in producing women and minority Ph.D. candidates.

Luis Ubiņas
President
Ford Foundation
Mr. Ubiņas became the ninth president of the Ford Foundation in January, heading an organization with assets valued at more than $13 billion. He previously spent 18 years at McKinsey & Co., where he led the firm's West Coast media practice based in San Francisco. Mr. Ubiņas founded McKinsey's Latino recruiting and mentoring group to introduce and cultivate diverse talent. He is also heavily involved with educational and family-related nonprofits.

Robert Otto Valdez
Executive Director of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Center for Health Policy, University of New Mexico
Mr. Valdez is nationally recognized as an expert on health services research methodology, the U. S. health care system, and health policy analysis. He served as a senior advisor to the White House on health care reform and also conducted research at the RAND health sciences program in Santa Monica, California and in Washington, D.C.

Jesse Villarreal Jr.
Chief of Staff to the Chairman
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
Mr. Villarreal, who joined the FDIC in 2006 and works with Chairwoman Sheila Bair, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, McCombs School of Business. He was selected to serve President George Bush in the White House as associate director for Cabinet affairs from 2003 to 2005. For service to the Treasury and the American people, Mr. Villarreal was honored with the Exceptional Service Award.

Judith Zaffirini
State Senator
Texas State Senate
Senator Zaffirini is the second-highest-ranking Texas state senator and the highest-ranking woman and Hispanic senator. A Democrat from Laredo, she has been a senator since 1987. During that time she has maintained a 100% voting record, casting more than 38,500 consecutive votes. She possesses a Ph.D. and chairs the Senate higher education subcommittee; she is also a member of the education, health and human services, and administration committees.

Jaime Zapata
Reading Clerk
U. S. House of Representatives
Mr. Zapata, who became Reading Clerk at the end of July, is the first Hispanic to serve in that role. The former communications director for the House Committee on Small Business is now responsible for ensuring that legislative measures debated in the House are clearly articulated to members of Congress, the American people, and around the world. He holds degrees in international relations and media and public affairs.


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