For Richard A. Carranza, the newly appointed Superintendent of the Houston Independent School District, education has always represented a powerful gift brimming with opportunity. But he knows how hard it can be to reach for that opportunity. A high school guidance counselor once suggested that a class in sheet metal (his father’s career path), might be a better choice for the youngster than taking chemistry.

“As a son of blue-collar workers who started school not knowing a word of English,” Carranza said,

“I have the opportunity and extreme privilege to lead a School District—62 percent of its students Latino—where I can fight for an equitable education for students and ensure that my community’s voice won’t go unheard or be minimized.”

A longtime supporter of Hispanics in Philanthropy, Carranza’s way of giving back appears fully aligned with HIP’s mission of strengthening Latino equity, voice and leadership while embracing the core values of empowerment, inclusion, and social justice.

Carranza’s career in education has been dedicated to ensuring that all students receive an excellent education. Furthermore, in seeking to lead the transformation and reimagination of the public school system, he recognizes the changes must also be systemic.

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