October 5, 2013 – Las Cruces, NM - On this edition of PUENTES, Emily Guerra bridges the community with award-winning filmmaker and producer of the PBS documentary series, “Latino Americans,” John J. Valadez. For the past twenty years, he has been producing and directing award-winning documentaries for PBS and CNN. He is of Mexican-American descent, born and raised in Seattle, Washington. His ancestors did not have to immigrate to America, like many families in New Mexico, the United States immigrated them.
Over the last 500-plus years more than 50 million Latinos have helped create and shape America. The first major documentary series for television that chronicles the history and experiences of Latinos in the United States is “Latino Americans.” Valadez visited various universities for research on his documentary, specifically their Chicano/Mexican-American/Ethnic Studies Departments. He says that “Mexican-American Studies Departments are good for everybody, because Mexican-American history is American history.”
By the end of November, Valadez will have visited fifty schools and universities to talk about the three-part, six-hour documentary series. He says he hopes the “Latino Americans” is a way to span divides of differences and find new connections for positive change and understanding.
KRWG-TV will encore part one of “Latino Americans,” Foreigners In Their Own Land/Empire Of Dreams” tonight at 8 o’clock.