Navarrette to kick off "Newsmaker Breakfast Series"

Award-winning journalist Ruben Navarrette Jr. will visit McAllen next month as part of the inaugural Newsmaker Breakfast Series, hosted by the McAllen Chamber of Commerce and The Monitor.

Described as “a fresh and increasingly important voice in the national political debate,” the syndicated columnist’s twice-weekly column “offers new thinking on many of the major issues of the day, especially on thorny questions involving ethnicity and national origin,” his website says.

First entering into syndication in 2001, Navarrette’s column has appeared in hundreds of newspapers worldwide, includingThe Washington PostandUSA Today.

Navarrette first garnered national attention in 1993 with his book,A Darker Shade of Crimson: Odyssey of a Harvard Chicano. In the memoir, he reflected back on the difficulties he faced as a Hispanic student attending the traditionally white university.

“[Navarrette] darts his barbs at two chief targets: the old Wasp elite that stifles the university with exclusive rules and expectations, and the new Mexican-American contingent, equally exclusive, that tries to shoehorn him into an ironclad rad-chic ideology,” observes Kirkus Reviews.

Issues relating to the struggles of the Hispanic population are a frequent target for Navarrette, who has written extensively on immigration policy and entitlement programs.

The Newsmaker Breakfast Series is being sponsored by IBC Bank and will follow a question-and-answer format in whichMonito reditor Carlos Sanchez will query Navarrette on an array of issues.

“My mandate when I joined this newspaper was to makeThe Monitora thought leader in this community and I believe this series will go a long way toward achieving that goal,” Sanchez said.

The organizers of the Newsmaker Breakfast Series aim to hold similar events once every couple of months in an attempt to bring stimulating intellectual discourse to the greater McAllen area.

McAllen Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Steve Ahlenius said he hopes to bring in a variety of political leaders from around the state, including the likes of Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.

“I’m excited about the series,” Ahlenius said. “I think it’s a great opportunity for a number of different people to come and engage in the free exchange of ideas.”

IF YOU GO

WHAT: Inaugural Newsmaker Breakfast Series featuring syndicated columnist Ruben Navarrette Jr.

WHEN: 8:30 a.m, Oct. 17 at 8:30 a.m.

WHERE: McAllen Chamber of Commerce, 1200 Ash Ave., McAllen

TICKETS: $10, visit the McAllen Chamber or call (956) 682-2871 to purchase

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