Invitation to Citizenship - | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas


Invitation to Citizenship

Leonel J. Castillo, Commissioner of Immigration and Naturalization, May 13, 1977 to October 1, 1979 Leonel J. Castillo, Commissioner of Immigration and Naturalization, May 13, 1977 to October 1, 1979

In a continuous effort to give service to the Latino community for the past 20 years in Houston and throughout the state of Texas, once again, Mr. Leonel Castillo and Alma Monsivais will offer the opportunity to obtain your American citizenship by organizing workshops to fill out the corresponding forms, as well as orientation classes to help you go through the immigration interview process. The United States Citizenship Workshop is offered through the Texas Citizenship Education Program.

The workshop will be held Sunday, November 12, 2006 at the Sweet Lou Suga Shak (in front of the Knights of Columbus hall) at 2011 Spence St. in Lufkin. The class begins at 9:00 a.m. Call (936) 634-1583 or (936) 634-5811 for more information.

Leonel J. Castillo was born on June 9, 1939 in Victoria, Texas. A Texas native, Castillo grew up in a family where meals and gatherings were filled with spirited conversation about the need to improve the status of the Latino community. While in college, he was Student Government President, President of the Young Democrats, and Chair of Students for Civil Liberties.  Castillo's education included an undergraduate degree from St. Mary's University in 1961, a Master's degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 1967; After graduating from college, Castillo had a life-changing experience as he served in the Peace Corps in the Philippines from 1963 to 1966, serving in the first Peace Corps contingent to Asia.

He later settled in Houston, Texas, where he supervised a human resources development program, directed manpower training and job placement programs, and became the Director of Catholic Council of Community Relations in 1970. In 1971 he was elected as Controller for the City of Houston, and was re-elected twice to that office, where he served until appointed as Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) Commissioner in 1977 by then president Jimmy Carter.

After he returned to Houston in 1979, Mr. Castillo served as President of the Hispanic International University (HIU) and as a board member of Houston Metropolitan Ministries. American Red Cross, American Red Cross , Hermann Hospital, Riverside General Hospital, United Way, Urban Harvest, and the Annenberg Foundation.

Mr. Castillo retired in 2006 as an Education Liaison for city of Houston Mayor Bill White. He was also a field instructor for students at the graduate school of Social Work at the National Association of Social Workers.

Castillo has been married to his wife Evelyn Chapman since 1963. They have two children and four grandchildren.

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