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Anastacio "Tatcho" Mindiola, Jr., was born in Houston in 1939. He studied at the University of Houston from 1962-1970, receiving an undergraduate business degree and a master's degree in sociology. He received his Ph. D. from Brown University in 1978. Mindiola is an associate professor of sociology at UH and has been director of the UH Center for Mexican American Studies since 1980.
Mindiola recounts the creation in 1972 and the history of the University of Houston's Center for Mexican American Studies (CMAS), including the role of its first director, Lupe Quintanilla, in its development. He recalls at length his struggle with UH over tenure and promotion, making clear the roles of State Representative Román Martínez and Judge James De Anda in the settlement eventually reached with the university. Mindiola describes his time as director of CMAS, especially his budget struggles with the university, his interaction with university president, Ed Bishop, and the assistance he received from Román Martínez. He talks about the eventual expansion of the program made possible by increasing budgets, and how the success of CMAS bolstered support and revenues for ethnic studies at UH. Mindiola discusses his relationship with State Senator Mario Gallegos and the conflict that arose between them during Gallegos' campaign against Román Martínez. The interview concludes with information about the Mindiola family.
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