It’s Mayor Nicole Murray Ramirez of La Villita, TexasAround the City Thursday, May 31st, 2012
San Diego-based national gay Latino activist Nicole M. Ramirez’s longstanding relationship with Texas just got a little closer as the mayor of San Antonio has named Ramirez mayor of city-within-a-city, La Villita.
La Ciudad de La Villita is considered one of the oldest cities in Texas and the original San Antonio. La Villita has had local governments first under the Spanish, then the Mexican government.
In 1836, La Villita was the site of General Santa Ana’s “cannon line” in the battle of the Alamo. It was during the 19th century that the City of La Villita had its last mayor and San Antonio’s first real settlement was handed back to San Antonio.
Ramirez has kept close relationships with Texas public officials, as well as Latino, LGBT, activists and organizations for decades. Once, late Texas governor, Ann Richards made Ramirez an “honorary Texan;” and in 1993 the first elected gay state legislator, then state Rep. Glen Maxey of Austin, presented Nicole M. Ramirez with a special commendation from the Texas House of Representatives. As a past national board member of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), Ramirez attended the first HRC dinners in Texas which at times drew more than 2,000 people. While earlier this year, Ramirez – a San Diego city commissioner – held a private meeting with Houston mayor, Annise Parker, who is openly lesbian.
Saturday, the mayor of San Antonio, the second-largest city in Texas, issued a proclamation granting a new office of the mayor of La Villita to Nicole M. Ramirez. Though perhaps symbolic, the appointment is an official one, complete with the signature of the San Antonio city clerk; and it will remain a matter of record in the city’s official files in perpetuity. Writing in the proclamation, popular San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro said “… as long as you perform your duties faithfully and carry on the laws and regulations of said City of La Villita as set forth in its charter.”
The City of La Villita is about as big as San Diego’s historic Old Town and has a church, town square with an historic statue of President Juárez of Mexico.
“I plan to have some fun with this new position and honor and spend time telling the historic story of La Villita, its current beauties, attractions and culture. I will also extol the great City of San Antonio as a place to visit, play, work and worship,” said Ramirez. City Commissioner Ramirez also met with Iraq war hero, Eric Alva who was one of the most prominent leaders in the efforts to lift the ban on Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Alva agreed to become one of the “honorary chairs” of the national letter-writing campaign to the secretary of the Navy to name a Navy vessel after former Lt. Harvey Milk. Ramirez is the chairman of the national campaign and the two other honorary chairs are Congressman Bob Filner, ranking member of the Veterans Congressional committee, and Stuart Milk, founder of the Harvey Milk Foundation.
The City of La Villita’s new mayor, Nicole M. Ramirez, stated he hopes to bring a lot of awareness to the history of this old town and raise some funds for some of San Antonio’s outstanding charities.
Short URL: http://lgbtweekly.com/?p=25046