Mexican tapestery pattern

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Funded in part by a grant from TexTreasures and by the UT Arlington Library.

Diana Dávila


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(103 pages)

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Biography:

Diana Dávila was a State Representative from District 145 in Houston, and was a former legislative aide to State Representative Román Martínez. Ms. Dávila earned her B.A. in Anthropology from Harvard University.

Interview Summary:

Ms. Dávila gives details about Mexican American student life at Ivy league schools like Harvard University. Ms. Dávila talks about the importance of the Mexican American Legislative Caucus in Texas politics and to the Mexican American community. She explains why she developed an interest in Texas politics and how her experience as a legislative aide to Representative Román Martínez, led her to decide to run for public office. Ms. Dávila elaborates upon the political processes and internal politics of the Texas Legislature and she describes political and attitudinal difficulties she faced as a woman and as a Mexican American with other White and Mexican American politicians who sought to undermine her activities and political proposals. She explains how the political process of getting a bill through the legislature is different from the operational reality of how that is accomplished. She addresses the issue of Women -- Political activity and gives her ideas comparing women with male politicians and leaders. Ms. Dávila describes her political campaigns and how they were managed and financed. She elaborates upon some of the key issues current in the legislature at that time such as legislative redistricting, child health care issues, public school finance, and educational equity. Ms. Dávila laments the negative backlash the Mexican American community experiences following the notoriety of prominent Mexican Americans who have fallen into legal trouble. She describes intra-group rivalries between individual Mexican American politicians in Texas and tells how it works against accomplishing anything positive for the community. She concludes the interview by expressing her hope that the Mexican American community will become empowered through electoral participation and will find political strength by standing together for change.

Locations of residence or activity:

Houston

Interview Date:

1/6/1997