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Featured, from left: Agustín García, Jr., Executive Director, Edinburg Economic Development Corporation, and Mayor Richard García, who also serves as President of the Board of Directors for the Edinburg EDC, review jobs creation strategies during an Edinburg EDC public meeting at Edinburg City Hall on Friday, August 7, 2015. Additional insights into the local and regional economies will be offered in Edinburg during the 13th Annual State of Real Estate Forum, sponsored by Edwards Abstract and Title Co., to be held during the morning of Thursday, March 2, 2017 at the Edinburg Conference Center at Renaissance, located at 118 Paseo Del Prado. Mayor García and McAllen Mayor James E. Darling will participate as guest speakers during the gathering, which already has more than 250 business, real estate, community, economic development and political leaders confirmed to attend the event, which begins at 9 a.m., according to Elva Jackson Garza, Vice-President & Marketing Manager, Edward Abstract and Title Co. Garza is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Edinburg EDC. Mayor García will make his presentation from 10 a.m. to 10:30 a.m, followed by Darling, who will deliver his remarks from 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. Agustín García, Jr. and Mayor García are not related. The Edinburg EDC Board of Directors is comprised of Mayor Richard García as President, Harvey Rodríguez, Jr. as Vice President, Elías Longoria, Jr. as Secretary/Treasurer, and Richard Rupert and Dr. Peter Dabrowski as Members.

Photograph By MARK MONTEMAYOR

Dr. Steven A. Lieberman, Interim Dean of the UTRGV School of Medicine, on Wednesday, February 8, 2017, addressed the UT System Board of Regents’ Health Affairs Committee in Austin, providing an update on the progress of the UT System’s newest medical school, which has a major campus in Edinburg. The Edinburg Mayor, Edinburg City Council, and Edinburg EDC successfully helped lobby the Texas Legislature in 2013 to help secure passage of Senate Bill 24, by Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, D-McAllen, and Rep. René  Oliveira, D-Brownsville, which authorized the merger of UT-Pan American and UT-Brownsville and the creation of a free standing medical school with a new campus in Edinburg.

Photograph By DAVID PIKE

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Mayor García, President of the Edinburg EDC Board of Directors, and McAllen Mayor Darling to address 13th Annual Real Estate Forum on Thursday, March 2, 2017 from 10 a.m to 11 a.m.

By DAVID A. DÍAZ
Legislativemedia@aol.com

Additional insights into the local and regional economies will be offered in Edinburg during the 13th Annual State of Real Estate Forum, sponsored by Edwards Abstract and Title Co., to be held during the morning of Thursday, March 2, 2017 at the Edinburg Conference Center at Renaissance, located at 118 Paseo Del Prado.

Edinburg Mayor Richard García and McAllen Mayor James E. Darling will participate as guest speakers during the gathering, which already has more than 250 business, real estate, community, economic development and political leaders confirmed to attend the event, which begins at 9 a.m., according to Elva Jackson Garza, Vice-President & Marketing Manager, Edward Abstract and Title Co.

Garza is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Edinburg EDC.

García will make his presentation from 10 a.m. to 10:30 a.m, followed by Darling, who will deliver his remarks from 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Dr. Ted C. Jones, Senior Vice President–Chief Economist for Stewart Title Guaranty Company and Director of Investor Relations for Stewart Information Services Corporation (NYSE-STC) will headline the Forum as the keynote speaker as he has for the past 11 years.

The Edinburg EDC Board of Directors is comprised of Mayor Richard García as President, Harvey Rodríguez, Jr. as Vice President, Elías Longoria, Jr. as Secretary/Treasurer, and Richard Rupert and Dr. Peter Dabrowski as Members.

Agustín García, Jr. is Executive Director for the Edinburg EDC, which is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council.

Agustín García, Jr. and Mayor Richard García are not related.

Jones’ presentation for 2017 is titled Things Change – The Outlook for Real Estate and the Economy.

He will provide insight and statistics on the national, state and local job markets and specific local real estate market analysis and various other indicators that affect the overall economy.

“I want to personally extend an invitation to real estate industry and business professionals to join Edwards at the Forum. Dr. Jones travels across the country as he makes over 150 presentations and we are proud that he makes time every year to visit Edwards and the Rio Grande Valley,” said Byron Jay Lewis, President and CEO of Edwards.

“We are pleased to welcome Mayor Richard García and Mayor Jim Darling as guest speakers. As the region grows, these two leaders are in the forefront of change of the Valley’s landscape,” added Lewis.

Richard H. García is a Federal Criminal Law Attorney and a senior partner with an established law firm.

A native of Edinburg, García graduated from Edinburg High School and continued his education at the University of Texas-Pan American and received a Juris Doctorate at Texas Southern University in Houston.

He served as Edinburg Municipal Judge from 1975-1978 and was a County Court-at-Law Judge for 16 years. García served as chair of the Texas Border Coalition twice and is proud to have been appointed to serve on the Texas Adult Probation Commission.

He is currently the President of the Board of Directors of the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation.

James E. Darling is an attorney specializing in local government law (28 years city attorney – City of McAllen, and other governmental entities) and he is licensed by the Texas Supreme Court, Southern District of Texas Federal Court.

Darling is a graduate of the Baylor Law School (1977) and Baylor University (BA 1975).

Some of his current leadership roles in the community include Chairman, Lower Rio Grande River Water Authority; Board Member, Region M Water Planning Group; Board Member, McAllen Economic Development Corporation; Board Member, McAllen Foreign Trade Zone, Inc.; Chairman Hidalgo-McAllen International Bridge Board; Chairman, Anzaldúas International Bridge Board, and President,Texas Municipal League, Region 12.

He has served as mayor for two terms.

Edwards Abstract and Title Co. operates full service offices in Hidalgo and Cameron Counties in the cities of Brownsville, Edinburg, Harlingen, McAllen, and South Padre Island.

LIEBERMAM, UTRGV SCHOOL OF MEDICINE INTERIM DEAN, UPDATES UT SYSTEM BOARD OF REGENTS ON PROGRESS TO DATE

Dr. Steven A. Lieberman, Interim Dean of The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley’s School of Medicine, on Wednesday, February 8, 2017, gave the Board of Regents’ Health Affairs Committee an update on the progress of the UT System’s newest medical school.

“We are young, we are in the toddler stage,” Lieberman said. “We’ve passed the crawling and walking stages and we’re looking forward to running in the near future.”

Since the Texas Legislature approved creation of UTRGV and the School of Medicine in 2013, he told regents, the medical school:

• Has founded the South Texas Diabetes and Obesity Institute;

• Will sponsor, by summer 2017, seven medical residency programs at five Valley hospitals – Valley Baptist Medical Center-Harlingen, Doctors Hospital at Renaissance, McAllen Medical Center, Valley Baptist Medical Center-Brownsville, and Knapp Medical Center;

• Received preliminary accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME); and

• Completed its $54 million Medical Education Building on the Edinburg Campus before welcoming its first cohort of 55 students in June 2016.

The School of Medicine also broke ground on a medical research building in McAllen through a partnership it has formed with Doctors Hospital at Renaissance.

Lieberman also told regents about the School of Medicine’s recent $15 million gift from the Valley Baptist Legacy Foundation, which will help create the UTRGV Institute for Neurosciences. He also talked about the school’s commitment to public health and its ongoing efforts to recruit faculty and researchers, develop residency programs, build clinical programs and develop and strengthen partnerships with area hospitals.

UT Regent Sara Martínez Tucker, who served as the committee’s chairman for that day, said the School of Medicine has been met with much enthusiasm from the Valley community and has garnered support from local organizations.

“Congratulations on your efforts,” Tucker said.

UTRGV SCHOOL OF MEDICINE MATCHES WITH 50 STUDENTS FOR SECOND COHORT

On Monday, February 6, 2017, the UTRGV School of Medicine announced it has identified 50 prospective students for its second class.

Of the 50 students matched, 45 are from Texas and 11 of those are from the Rio Grande Valley. Seven are from Hidalgo County, two are from Cameron County and two are from Starr County.

The average MCAT score for matched applicants was 507, which is in the 76th percentile nationally. The average grade point average is about a 3.5 on a 4.0 scale.

“We are delighted with the students who matched with us,” said Dr. Steven A. Lieberman, Interim Dean of the UTRGV School of Medicine. “Not only are they academically gifted, but they also have a passion to serve the people of the Valley. We are truly fortunate to attract students who will represent the best of what our profession stands for: both a keen mind and a big heart.”

This is the first time the School of Medicine has matched with students from Starr County, said Betty Monfort, The UTRGV School of Medicine’s Senior Associate Dean for Admissions and Enrollment Management.

The out-of-state prospective students are from California, Utah, North Carolina and Washington.

“This is a very high-caliber class,” Monfort said.

The School of Medicine received 3,950 completed applications and interviewed 320 students for 50 seats.

The medical school then ranked applicants for admission. Applicants, as well, ranked the medical schools to which they applied, in order of preference, should they be accepted to those schools. The rankings from the medical school and applicants were then sent to the Texas Medical and Dental Schools Application Service – a centralized application processing service for all first-year medical students applying to public medical, dental and veterinary schools – to be matched.

Because students have until the first day of orientation to decline the acceptance offer, the UTRGV School of Medicine is not yet releasing names of the top 50 students with whom they matched, Monfort said.

Orientation for the new medical students starts July 5.

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Jennifer Berghom and Elva Jackson Garza contributed to this story. For more information on the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation and the City of Edinburg, please log on to http://edinburgedc.com or to http://www.facebook.com/edinburgedc

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