• IDRA Newsletter • January 2002 • Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, Ph.D.

María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, Ph.D., executive director of the Intercultural Development Research Association (IDRA), was recently honored by the Texas Association for Bilingual Education (TABE). Dr. Robledo Montecel received the TABE Community Advocacy Award for her exemplary professional service to bilingual education. The award was presented at the TABE annual conference in October in Dallas.

Dr. Robledo Montecel’s lifetime concern with youth – especially youth who are minority, poor or limited-English-proficient – has provided inspiration and vision for many individuals and communities across the country. Her advocacy and expertise in education have been instrumental in achieving the goals of excellence and equity in education for students in San Antonio, the nation and the world. Going against the current deficit model approaches in schools, she champions the value, integrity and possibilities of all children.

Dr. Robledo Montecel is a nationally recognized expert on the prevention and recovery of dropouts. She has testified in state and national legislatures regarding dropouts, bilingual education and other critical education issues.

Dr. Robledo Montecel’s excellence in leadership has earned her the privilege of serving on numerous local, national and international boards and advisory groups. An alumnus of Our Lady of the Lake University, she is currently serving her second term on the university’s Board of Trustees.

Dr. Robledo Montecel’s experience and leadership have also been instrumental in the creation of some key national and international organizations. She is a founding board member of the Mexican and American Solidarity Foundation, which is an organization created to strengthen ties between Mexican citizens and the Mexican American community. She served as an invited expert on the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans. In 1997, Dr. Robledo Montecel was named among the top 100 Hispanic influentials by Hispanic Business magazine.

Comments and questions may be directed to IDRA via e-mail at feedback@idra.org.

[©2002, IDRA. This article originally appeared in the January 2002 IDRA Newsletter by the Intercultural Development Research Association. Permission to reproduce this article is granted provided the article is reprinted in its entirety and proper credit is given to IDRA and the author.]