Garcia honored as outstanding educator during Onondaga County Hispanic Heritage Month
As the local community celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month Sept. 15-Oct. 15, Syracuse University professor of social work Alejandro Garcia will be honored as an outstanding educator. The award will be presented at the opening ceremony that will kick off the month-long celebration on Sept. 15, 4:30-6:30 p.m. at Delaware Academy.
“Hispanic/Latino contributors to education in Central New York” is the theme for Onondaga County Hispanic Heritage Month, which is organized by community members dedicated to educating residents while celebrating Hispanic/Latino culture and its contributions in the United States, Onondaga County and the City of Syracuse. Garcia has been a strong advocate for Hispanic populations, particularly the elderly, throughout his career. In addition to serving as a member of the editorial board and book review editor for the Journal of Ethnic and Cultural Diversity in Social Work, he has been chairman of the board and currently serves as a member of the board of the National Hispanic Council on Aging. He was a delegate to the 1981 and 1995 White House Conferences on Aging and currently serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare.
Garcia has made numerous significant contributions to the local community as well as his profession. He has provided leadership to the Spanish Action League and is on the board of advisers of La Casita Cultural Center, a SU-based project engaging the Latino community. He has also provided support to the Living Room, a drop-in center for persons with HIV/AIDS, and the Friends of Dorothy hospice.
He joined the Syracuse University School of Social Work in 1978, where he has served as director and currently is a member of the faculty in the David B. Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics. His many honors include the establishment of the Alejandro Garcia Scholarship for Excellence in Social Work by California State University at Sacramento and the creation of an internship, the Alejandro Garcia Internship on Poverty and Hunger Policy, by the National Hispanic Council on Aging. He has also been named Distinguished Social Work Educator of the Decades by the Division of Social Work, California State University, Sacramento, which also honored him with a Distinguished Service Award.
Garcia is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and an elected member of the National Academy of Social Insurance. Other professional affiliations include the Council on Social Work Education and the National Association of Social Workers, both at the New York State level and nationally. He has been active with AARP at the state and national levels. He served as chair and member of the AARP National Policy Council and currently services as a member of the AARP Executive Council. For his contributions, he received the Andrus Award, the highest honor that AARP awards.