Women in Public Service honored at Women's History Month Symposium

Memorial Student Union Building, room 219AB - 02/29/16 - 03/03/16

Contact: Julie Navejar
julie.navejar@tamuk.edu or 361-593-2590

As a celebration of Women’s History Month, the Women and Gender Studies group at Texas A&M University-Kingsville will honor women in public service and government at the Women’s History Month Symposium, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday, March 3, in room 219AB in the Memorial Student Union Building.

 The keynote speaker for Working to Form a More Perfect Union: Honoring Women in Public Service and Government will be Mary Helen Berlanga, former member of the State Board of Education and attorney and partner at the firm of Bonilla and Chapa.

Berlanga will speak about The Importance of Women Serving in Public Office at the keynote address at 11 a.m. Her talk will be followed by a conversation and light snacks.

Members of the Texas A&M-Kingsville faculty will participate in several panel discussions throughout the day.

The program will conclude with the announcement of the NOW Person of the Year award.

For more information, call 361-593-2761. 

About Mary Helen Berlanga

Berlanga followed her brothers into the legal profession currently practicing Social Security and immigration law. She earned her bachelor’s degree from University of Houston and her law degree from the South Texas College of Law.

She was appointed to the State Board of Education by Gov. Mark White in 1984. She was elected to the board in 1988 and served continually until 2012. From 1988 to 1998, she served as secretary to the board.

Continuing her interest in education, Berlanga connected to the Corpus Christi schools, creating a scholarship program at Crossley Elementary School assisting fifth graders who graduated in 2000 to attend college.

She continues to be a guest speaker on the subject of education throughout Texas. Because of her dedication to education, the Corpus Christi Independent School District named one of their newest schools Mary Helen Berlanga Elementary School.

Berlanga received the Educator of the Year Award from the Alpha Delta Kappa honor teacher sorority. In 1999, the State Board of Education presented her with the Distinguished Service Award. She received the Award for Dedication to Children from the American GI Forum and the Dr. Sandra Lanier-Lerma Outstanding Contribution to Literacy Award from the Corpus Christi ISD.