The Nixon Foundation hosted its 7th in a year-long series of Legacy Forums on Monday, Creating Opportunities for Latino Americans, featuring a panel of distinguished Nixon White House and Campaign officials who first reached out to America’s Hispanic community, introduced pioneering programs for minority enterprise, included Mexican-Americans in the U.S. Census and appointed Latinos to high-level government positions for the first time in history.
Panelists included Martin G. Castillo, Deputy Director of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights and the first Chair of the Cabinet Committee on Opportunities for Spanish-Speaking People; Carlos Condé, White House Staff Assistant for Communications and Hispanic Affairs; G.G. Garcia, Associate Director of the Cabinet Committee on Opportunities for Spanish-Speaking and Senior Staff Assistant to Texas Governor William P. Clements; David V. Gonzales, early pioneer in Hispanic voter outreach and Assistant to the Chairman of the California Republican Party; Manuel Oliverez; Executive Director of Program Operations for the Cabinet Committee on Opportunities for Spanish Speaking People; Theresa Avillar Speake, official with the National Economic Development Association (NEDA); and Stuart K. Spencer, Special Consultant to President Nixon, and Campaign Manager to Presidents Ford and Reagan. Dr. Henry M. Ramirez, the last Chairman of the Cabinet Committee and adviser to Presidents Ford and Reagan, moderated the discussion.

Special guests included Hon. Rosario Marin, the first Latina-immigrant Treasurer of the United States, and prominent Hispanic community leaders among who served with the panelists in the White House Cabinet Committee on Opportunities for Spanish-Speaking People and the National Economic Development Association.

“I want to thank you for opening the doors,” Treasurer Marin told the panelists. “You created the path for people like me to achieve things that historically I wouldn’t have been able to do.”