March 14, 2017
Statement from HACU President on the passing of Congressman Eligio “Kika” de la Garza
The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) family is saddened by the passing March 13, 2017 of Congressman Eligio “Kika” de la Garza, and extends its condolences to his family and friends. He served in the U.S. Congress from 1965 to 1997 and chaired the House Agriculture Committee from 1981 to 1994.
During his last year in Congress de la Garza spearheaded an amendment to the Farm Bill that created the Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) program under the U.S. Department of Agriculture. This historic legislative amendment has provided funding and support services for countless college and high-school students to pursue higher education in agriculture-related fields; it has also helped HSIs to strengthen their capacity to better assist and graduate such students.
HACU President and CEO Antonio Flores stated, “Congressman de la Garza was a tireless champion of educational opportunity and environmental protection, as well as of civil rights and Hispanic inclusion. HACU will forever be grateful for his life and legacy. He dedicated his life to make our nation a better place for all Americans. Our thoughts and prayers are with his friends and family at this difficult time.”