The honorees at Laredo’s annual Founders’ Day Celebration included Dr. Cayetano Barrera, the organization’s president; Vice Presidents Homero Vera, Andres Tijerina and Renato Ramirez; Secretary/Treasurer Richard P. Sanchez; and Jaime Beaman. Also honored was Laredo artist Armando Hinojosa, who sculpted the monument.
“The recent unveiling of the monument on the historic south lawn of the Capitol is a testament to the commitment and dedication of these great Tejanos,” Senator Zaffirini said. “Because of their perseverance, Armando’s magnificent sculptures will educate and inspire Texans for generations to come.”
The monument was first conceived in 2001 by Dr. Barrera, who brought the project to fruition by working with fellow board members, Hinojosa, Senator Zaffirini, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and many others.
Placing the monument on the historic south grounds of the Texas Capitol was authorized in 2009 when the legislature passed House Bill (HB) 4114 by Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer and Senator Zaffirini, the companion to Senate Bill 2251, also authored by Senator Zaffirini. The senator also secured $1.1 million in state funding for the monument, and monument supporters, led by Ramirez, raised more than an additional $1 million.
At today’s Founders’ Day ceremony sponsored by the Webb County Heritage Foundation, Senator Zaffirini presented Hinojosa and the board members of Tejano Monument, Inc., each with a framed copy of Senate Resolution 332, which she authored.
The resolution pays tribute to the “dedicated individuals who came together” in support of establishing a monument “that honors the many contributions and sacrifices of Tejanos and serves as a permanent testimony to the influence of the Spanish-Mexican heritage on our state’s culture.”