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De León Honored for Lifetime Achievement

March 04, 2013

Angelo State University history professor Dr. Arnoldo De León has been awarded the Premio Estrella de Aztlán Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest honor and recognition bestowed by the National Association of Chicana and Chicano Studies (NACCS).

De León, ASU’s C.J. “Red” Davidson Professor of History, was honored for his lifetime of “scholarship, community activities and mentorship,” which led to the betterment of Hispanics in Texas and beyond.  The ASU professor is considered one of the nation’s preeminent scholars in the field of Mexican-American history.  He received the national award in late February at the NACCS Tejas Conference at the University of Texas Pan American in Edinburg.

His nomination letter called De León “a true pioneer in the field of Mexican-American history, especially the history of Texas Mexicans.”  The nomination letter also stated, “His productive career has influenced the entirety of the field and has also put forth a series of themes that scholars continue to compliment and contribute to the stunning four decades of work that he has produced – and that he continues to publish.”

“Dr. De León,” the nomination letter continued, “is an extraordinary historian and a wonderful colega in the field of Mexican-American history and many, many historians can attest to his willingness to read materials, be on editorial boards, and share his extensive knowledge of bibliographic references – an aspect of which not many historians engage in these days.”

The letter concluded that De León’s “vision and contribution to the field of Mexican-American History and Texas Mexicans are remarkable and have transformed the lives of many young scholars, teachers, and community activists.”

An ASU alumnus and faculty member since 1973, De León is the author or editor of 20 major books and numerous articles on Mexican-American and Texas history.  He is currently working on the fifth edition of The History of Texas, the best-selling collegiate text on the subject, and contributing an essay to an edited volume titled Writing Texas History: A Guide to the History of the Lone Star State, both scheduled for publication this year.

De León is a fellow of both the Texas State Historical Association and the West Texas Historical Association, as well as a member of the Texas Institute of Letters.