Board of Directors
Luis Chaparro, President
Luis is currently the Director of Library Technical Services at El Paso Community College. His life-long goal is to improve literacy and library services to the diverse and growing Latino population of the Unites States. He has held numerous leadership positions in REFORMA, the National Association to promote library and information services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking.He served as REFORMA National President in 2008-09. Under his leadership, effort were initiatd to create a 501(c) 3 non profit organization. This goal was accomplished last year with the creation of the REFORMA Educational Foundation.
As president of El Paso Public Library Association, Luis continues on his mission to support events and projects that address the vital issues of reading, literacy, and library services in this community. EPPLA has created poetry and reading contests for midlle school children of El Paso. The most recent event was our donation of 144 Dr. Seuss books for a reading activity led by one of our member in a school in el Segundo Barrio.
With the help of the community, EPPLA will continue offering cultural programs that benefit the cultural growth of our children in El Paso.
Gertrude Muro, Secretary
Born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina, of German parents, Gertrude Muro or Gerty started falling in love with education at an early age. Every day she sadly watched her childhood friend Christel or Cristiana, nine months older than Gertrude, walk by their home to school. Christel was her friend and playmate she would miss all morning. One day she decided to run away to the school in their neighborhood with her. Very worried, Gertrude’s mother looked high and low without coming to the realization that Gerty had found the love of her life. Although her first language was German, she loved the teachers and learning, and was soon able to understand and speak the Spanish language.
Besides German grammar, reading and writing taught by her mother, Gertrude started learning English, a language that became her favorite. Gertrude enjoyed learning languages, so she took up French and Italian, and in time became proficient in five tongues.
In high school Gertrude found that she was able to explain English grammar to her classmates, so at the age of 15, she thought she should consider teaching her primary objective for a happy future. After graduating from high school, she enrolled in a school of higher education and became a teacher of English, a language she taught for 20 years in Buenos Aires.
When Gertrude met her loving husband, both decided to emigrate to the United States, a country they enjoyed for over 30 years. Gertrude did not waste any time to further her education. When she obtained her Master’s degree, she was soon employed by El Paso Community College (EPCC), which she considered her second home. She worked fulltime and was a dedicated student until she received her doctor’s degree in 1991, at the age of 51.
Gertrude retired in 2020, after 36 years at EPCC, at the age of 80. She enjoyed every minute of her career, but she has never given up learning and discovering new things. After her husband’s passing, Gertrude self-published three books, two in English and one in Spanish: Ode to Love, The Priest’s Daughter, and Oda al Amor.
Martha Holguin, Treasurer
Luis Herrera, Member
Luis Herrera retired as the City Librarian of the San Francisco Public Library after a forty-plus year career in librarianship. Previously, Mr. Herrera served as the Director of Information Services for Pasadena Public Library and the Deputy Director of the San Diego and Long Beach Library systems in California. Luis started his career as school librarian at Henderson Middle School and the El Paso Public Library. He has served as President of both the Public Library Association and the California Library Association and is currently a member of the Board of Trustees for the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Latino Community Foundation and the Golden Gate Parks Conservancy. In January 2012, Luis was named the Library Journal’s Librarian of the Year. He is the past Chair of Cal Humanities and served as a founding board member of the Digital Public Library of America. One if his highest honors was his nomination by President Barack Obama to serve on the Board of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). Luis’ wife Nancy and his nephew Manny are both librarians.
Cesar Caballero, Member
After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin (1974) with an MLIS, Cesar Caballero became the first president of the REFORMA Chapter in El Paso, Texas. He was elected to serve a two-year term as President of REFORMA National (1980-82). He also had the honor of serving as President of the Board of Directors of the El Paso Public Library (1978-80). After serving on the American Library Association’s Council, he was elected to serve as a member of the Executive Board of the ALA (1992-96). Professionally, Caballero has served as an academic librarian in various leadership roles in Texas and California. He currently serves as Dean and University Librarian at California State University, San Bernardino, and is a consultant in the area of Strategic Planning.
Ramiro S. Salazar, Member
Ramiro S. Salazar is currently the Director of the San Antonio Public Library. Ramiro has served as the Director of the San Antonio Public Library for fifteen years. As director, he is responsible for the delivery of library services to almost 2 million residents in San Antonio and Bexar County, Texas. He provides management oversight for a library system consisting of the downtown Central Library, 29 branch libraries and leads a team of over 550 employees. Before joining the San Antonio Public Library, Ramiro served as Interim Assistant City Manager for the City of Dallas, Texas. Prior to that, he served as the Director of Libraries for the Dallas Public Library from 1993 to 2004. He also served as Director of Libraries for the El Paso Public Library, City of El Paso, Texas for three years. He has dedicated his public service to increasing accessibility of library resources and services to all segments of the community. Ramiro has served in numerous leadership roles including being the President of Public Library Association, representing public libraries in North America and serving close to 10,000 public library professionals. He is currently serving on the Local Government Hispanic Network, a subsidiary of International City/County Management Association (ICMA). Most recently, he served on the American Library Association Future of Libraries Committee and the US Census 2020 Task Force.
Julieta Paez, Member
Julieta Páez Páez was born in Parral, Chihuahua, Mexico. She was raised in Mexico City, where she attended the Universidad Motolinía and the Universidad Autónoma de México. She graduated from the Stella Viae International School in Rome and obtained a diploma from the School of Interpreters and Translators of Rome in French. Julieta has published two previous books, “It’s in our Genes by Granny” in 2017 and Looking back, Moving forward” in 2019, as a collaboration with other authors. She has lived in the United States since 1970. A former successful Realtor and Civic Leader, she currently devouts her time to the support of the arts, the enjoyment of many hobbies and the many blessings that a beautiful family brings.
Manny Herrera, Member
Manny Herrera is a lifelong El Pasoan with over 20 years of experience working in libraries. He is a member of Texas Association for Chicanos in Higher Education, the Border Regional Library Association, and the Texas Library Association. He currently serves on the Program Review Committee at El Paso Community College where he is a tenure track reference librarian. Currently, he devotes his time outside the library to volunteering in his community, promoting literacy and information literacy, and raising his young son Victor Herrera.