Our Beginnings


The Texas A&M Hispanic Network had its early roots in informal gatherings of former student classmates who had common cultural ties and backgrounds. They shared a belief that their experience at Texas A&M was transformative and provided skills and opportunities that otherwise would not have been available to them. Collectively, their passion to pass this legacy of learning and opportunity to future Hispanic students became the hallmark of the Texas A&M Hispanic Network. In November of 2006, the TAMHN was formally chartered by The Association of Former Students to address ways Texas A&M and its former students of Hispanic background could assist then-President Robert Gates and the University in achieving the Vision 2020 goals relating to increasing diversity within the student body, faculty and staff.

Hispanic Aggies, Through the Years

1887 Earliest known Hispanic Graduate of Texas A&M

José Angel Ortís, Class of 1891, the earliest known Hispanic graduate of Texas A&M, graduates with a degree in civil engineering. He entered Texas A&M in 1887, taking courses in mechanical engineering through his junior year. It appears that he did not attend school during the 1890–91 school year but returned in the fall of 1891 to complete his degree.

1894 Touchdown, Aggies!

The first touchdown by an Aggie football team is scored on Thanksgiving Day, November 22, 1894, by N. Valdez from Hidalgo, México, Class of 1897, in a 14–0 victory over Galveston.

1902 Aggie Illustrates the Longhorn

David Rodríguez, a Hispanic student, serves as a major illustrator for the Texas A&M yearbook, The Longhorn. Outside of illustrating, he was involved throughout the campus, serving as a member of the Fencing Club and playing trumpet for the A&M College Band. He was also involved intellectually in the prestigious Austin Literary Society.

1914 Distinguished Student & Basketball Team Captain

Jim L. Garza, a Hispanic student and San Antonio native, is a distinguished student in his first term as a freshman. In addition to his duties in the Newman Club and T.E. Society, he was captain of the Company A basketball team

1937 Three-Year-Letterman in Baseball

Homer Thomas Martínez, a Hispanic student from Hebbronville, Texas is a three-year-letterman in baseball.

1957 Aggie Mother of the Year

María V. Reyes is voted “Aggie Mother of the Year.” Her husband, eight sons, daughter, grandson, and numerous nieces and nephews were all Aggies, and her daughter, Rachel Gonzáles, later became the first Hispanic President of the Federation of Texas A&M University Mothers’ Club in 1983.

1966 Exceptional Basketball Player Helps Team Place in SWC

Eddie Domínguez, a Hispanic student, transfers to Texas A&M from Lon Morris Junior College for the 1964-1965 season and lettered in basketball his first year. He was a starting guard in 1966 known for exceptional ball handling skills and deft touch on jump shots. His play helped the 1966 team to second place in the tough Southwest Conference.

1966 Hispanic Graduate of Aeronautical Engineering

Narciso “Norris” Ortíz Cano, a Hispanic, is 1966 Class President and a member of the distinguished Who’s Who in Colleges and Universities. He graduated with a degree in Aeronautical Engineering

1968 SWC Championship and Cotton Bowl Victory

Robert Cortez, Class of 1968, was a football letterman from 1965 to 1967, serving as team captain in 1967. An extremely physical linebacker, he was instrumental in A&M winning the 1967 Southwest Conference Championship and the 1968 Cotton Bowl with a victory over Alabama.

1969 First Hispanic Corps Commander

A native of Laredo, Héctor Gutiérrez, Jr., is A&M’s first Hispanic Corps Commander.

1969 Earliest Hispanic Female Graduate from Texas A&M University

Mary Catherine (Cantu) Custer, Class of 1969, is the earliest known Hispanic woman to graduate from Texas A&M University. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry.

1974 First Hispanic to serve as Assistant Director of Admissions

Daniel R. Hernandez became the first Hispanic to serve as the Assistant Director of Admissions in 1974. He was also one of the founders of CAMAC (Committee for Awareness of Mexican American Culture).

1988 One of the Great Latina Softball Players Known to Texas A&M

Zina Ochoa, Class of 1988, is one of a long line of great Latina softball players for Texas A&M. She was from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. During her A&M career she played outfield on the 1987 National Championship team. The team finished second nationally in 1986 and fifth in 1988. Her strong defensive skills and timely offense helped lead the team to national prominence.

1991 Beginning of the Professional Hispanic Network at Texas A&M

Creation of the Professional Hispanic Network (PHN), a group of leaders supporting Texas A&M University and the Bryan-College Station community to proactively address key issues affecting the education and quality of life of all Hispanics.

1992 First Latina to Hold the Position as a Full Professor at Texas A&M

Viola E. Flórez becomes the first Latina to be named a full professor at Texas A&M. She went on to serve as assistant head of education curriculum and instruction, executive assistant to the president, interim dean of the College of Education, and interim vice president and CEO for A&M Galveston.

1994 First Hispanic Woman Appointed to the Board of Regents

Guadalupe L. Rangel becomes the first Hispanic woman appointed to the Board of Regents.

1995 First Latino to win a SWC Championship

Anthony Rodríguez, Class of 1995, is the first Latino to win a Southwest Conference Championship. He lettered in golf in 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1995.

1995 Record Setting Tennis Team and SWC Co-Championship

Bernardo Martínez, a Hispanic student and Class of 1995, was tennis team captain in 1995 and lettered all four years at Texas A&M. Along with his younger brother and fellow teammate Eduardo Martínez, Class of 1996, he helped the Aggie tennis team set a school record of 23 wins and 4 losses and win the Co-Championship of the Southwest Conference in 1994.

1997 First Female Speaker of the Student Senate

Alice Gonzales, Class of 1999, serves as the first female speaker of the Student Senate.

1998 Research Conducted on Campus Climate

Dr. Sylvia Hurtado, with a research team from University of Michigan, conducted the study -Perspectives on the Climate for Diversity: Findings and Suggested Recommendations for the Texas A&M University Campus Community. Hurtado’s 1998 campus climate study was the result of a 1996 directive from Texas A&M’s President Ray M. Bowen to the vice president for Student Affairs to accurately assess campus climate.

2001 Mad Dog Madden led the Aggies to four straight NCAA Championships

Shuon Alejandro Madden, class of 2001, born in Caracas, Venezuela, graduated from Texas A&M with a degree in agricultural development. Known during his playing days at A&M as “Mad Dog Madden,” he achieved a National Singles Ranking of No. 2. He teamed with his tennis partner Dumitru Caradima, Class of 2001, and the duo achieved a national ranking of No. 1. He led the Aggies to four straight NCAA Championship appearances and to three visits to the round of 16, in addition to three Big 12 Tournament titles and a regular season Big 12 Championship.

2002 Mexican American Latino Faculty Association is Founded

Creation of the Mexican American Latino Faculty Association (MALFA). MALFA is an outgrowth of the Professional Hispanic Network (PHN). It was created in 2002 to create a Mexican American/Latino faculty presence at Texas A&M University and offer a strong Mexican American/Latino voice on campus and support the goals of Vision 2020. The group seeks to establish a liaison with the administration by providing insight in matters regarding Mexican American and Latino issues at all levels of the University.

2003 Texas A&M University Hispanic Network is Created

Texas A&M University President Robert Gates establishes first Vice President and Associate Provost for Institutional Diversity position. James Anderson is the first to hold this position. Texas A&M University Hispanic Network (TAMHN) is created. The mission of the Texas A&M Hispanic Network is to serve as an advocate and support group on Hispanic concerns and issues at the University and local communities within the larger Association of Former Students organization.

2004 Mexican American and U.S. Latino Research Center is Created

Creation of the Mexican American and U.S. Latino Research Center (MALRC). MALRC is created to enable faculty members to conduct research on issues that impart the quality of life of Mexican Americans and other Latinos in Texas and the United States.

2006 Hispanic Vice President and Associate Provost for Diversity

Tito Guerrero III, a Hispanic and Class of 1970, is hired as Vice President and Associate Provost for Diversity.

2008 First Hispanic Woman to hold the Position as President of Texas A&M University

Dr. Elsa E. Murano becomes President of Texas A&M University, the first Hispanic and first woman to hold this office.

2008 All-American Hispanic Tennis Player Sets Record Breaking Achievements

Jerry Machado Makowski, a Hispanic student and Class of 2008, was two- time ITA All-American, two-time All- Big 12 First Team selection in tennis. He made back-to-back NCAA Singles Championship appearances as a top seed in 2005 and 2006, was ranked a career-best No. 5 leading into his sophomore campaign, was two-time Arthur Ashe Jr. Scholar, and has played in three NCAA Team Championships. He became the first freshman in school history to earn All-American honors in singles and was named Big 12 Conference Freshman of the Year in 2005.

2010 First Hispanic Commandant of the Corps of Cadets

General Joe E. Ramirez Jr., Class of 1979, becomes the Commandant of the Corps of Cadets, becoming the first Hispanic to hold the position. He was also appointed to be the Vice President For Student Affairs at Texas A&M University, after his service as the Commandant. During his time at Texas A&M University, Ramirez joined the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Band in the Corps of Cadets, where he commanded the B Company “Streetfighters” his senior year.

2014 Distinguished Alumni Opens doors to a new TAMU Study Abroad Campus in Mexico

Mr. Pablo Marvin, Class of 1966, open the doors to Hacienda Santa Clara, a new teaching and research facility in San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato for use of Texas A&M faculty and students and their research and study partners in Mexico.

2015 Texas A&M names William Peña a Distinguished Alumni

The Distinguished Alumnus Award, the highest honor bestowed upon a former student of Texas A&M University, was awarded to William Peña ’42, for his service and support to the University.

2019 First Hispanic Chairman of the Board of Regents is elected

Elaine Mendoza, Class of 1987, is elected to serve as board chairman of the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents . She is the second woman and the first Hispanic to serve in this prestigious capacity.

2020 First Hispanic Yell Leader

Memo Salinas, a Laredo-native, was elected Junior Yell Leader 2020-21 and Head Yell Leader 2021-2022.

2023 Texas A&M names Héctor Gutiérrez, Jr. a Distinguished Alumni

The Distinguished Alumnus Award, the highest honor bestowed upon a former student of Texas A&M University, was awarded to Héctor Gutiérrez, Jr., for his service and support to the University. He is the founding chairman of the Texas A&M Hispanic Network, where his passion and vision directly supported A&M’s recent designation as a Hispanic Serving Institution, unlocking new levels of federal funding.