Julian Castro

Julian Castro Biography.com

Mayor(1974–)
Julian Castro is known for becoming San Antonio's youngest councilman in 2001. He was elected city's mayor in 2009. He also became the first Hispanic to deliver a keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in 2012.

Synopsis

Julian Castro was born on September 16, 1974, along with his twin brother, in San Antonio, Texas, where his family has lived since the 1920s. He was always a brilliant student, attending both Stanford University and Harvard Law School. Upon his graduation from law school, Castro ran for a seat on the San Antonio City Council and won, making history as the youngest councilman in the city's history. He served for several years and then ran for the mayoral seat, which he lost. He ran again for the mayoral seat in 2009 and won, becoming the fifth Hispanic mayor in San Antonio's history. Castro was relatively unknown before he delivered the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina in September 2012.

Early Life

San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro was born in San Antonio, Texas on September 16, 1974, along with his twin brother, Joaquín. Their mother, Maria Castro, was a political activist who founded the Chicano political party La Raza Unida and ran unsuccessfully for the San Antonio City Council in 1971. Their father, Jessie Guzman, was a retired math teacher and a community activist in the 1970s.

Castro was a brilliant student: In addition to learning chess and playing several sports throughout high school, he excelled at his school work and was able to skip his sophomore year, graduating in 1992. He went on to attend Stanford University along with his brother, now a representative in the Texas House of Representatives. While at Stanford, the brothers' interest in politics blossomed: Both earned bachelor's degrees in communications and political science. They both went on to attended Harvard Law School, and both earned their Juris Doctors in 2000. Castro has told The New York Times that his entrance into Stanford was a result of affirmative action, which he strongly supports.

Political Career

Like his mother before him, Castro ran against five others for a seat on the San Antonio City Council just one year after graduating from law school. He won 61 percent of the vote, becoming the youngest city councilman in the San Antonio history. Castro represented District 7, which had a population of 115,000, comprised mostly of Latinos and senior citizens.

Castro served as a councilman from 2001 to 2005, when he decided to run for the mayoral seat. Although he was viewed as the front runner, and initially won the plurality of the vote, he was defeated by retired judge Phil Hardberger in the June 2005 runoff.

Determined to be the mayor of San Antonio, Castro ran again for the seat in 2009. He won the election with more than 56 percent of the vote, becoming the fifth Latino mayor of San Antonio. He ran for the seat again in 2011, and was re-elected with 82 percent of the vote.

In March 2010, Castro joined Twitter and Google executives in being named to the World Economic Forum's list of Young Global Leaders. Soon after, Time magazine placed him on its "40 Under 40" list of rising stars in American politics. Throughout his tenure as mayor, Castro focused on attracting well-paying jobs to the city and raising educational attainment there. In 2011, the Milken Institute ranked San Antonio the nation's top-performing local economy.

Entry into the Spotlight

Castro was suddenly thrust into the spotlight when he delivered the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina on September 4, 2012. He made history as the first Hispanic ever to deliver a keynote address at the DNC, and fueled speculation that he is eyeing higher office, possibly the governorship of Texas or, possibly, president, according to FOX News. Castro has long been a supporter of President Barack Obama.

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