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Children of GIANT

The Center for the Study of the Southwest presents Children of GIANT, a "story of the people who were there, many of them children, who witnessed the making of GIANT, not knowing that it would become a lasting chronicle of the very lives they were living in that summer of 1955." Filmmaker, Hector Galán, will lead a discussion following the film.

April 5, 2016 | LBJ Student Center Teaching Theater
5:30pm Reception | 6:00 pm Program

Children of Giant Panel
Children of Giant discussion panel members and moderator, from left to right: Documentary filmmaker John Valadez, CSSW director Frank de la Teja, interviewee Wanda García, and Children of Giant producer and director Hector Galán
Image from GIANT movie
Credit: Courtesy of Richard C. Miller

Wanda Garcia

Ms. Daisy Wanda Garcia was born in Naples, Italy to Dr. Hector P. Garcia and Wanda Fusillo Garcia.  She attended Incarnate Word Academy High School in Corpus Christi, Texas and received a Bachelor’s of Arts in Zoology and Chemistry from the University of Texas at Austin. Wanda Garcia is the first born of the Garcia family and traveled with her father Dr. Hector P. Garcia and thus witnesses many historical events.

For seventeen years, Ms. Garcia served as a special assistant for Health and Human Services for Senator Lloyd M. Bentsen, Jr. and fourteen years as a Special Project Coordinator for Garry Mauro for the Texas General Land Office and the Texas Veterans Land Board.

Currently, Ms. Garcia is employed by the City of Austin as a System Support Technician for HHSD, and is owner of a small antique business.

Ms. Garcia has many special interests and is writing a book about Dr. Hector P. Garcia.  She enjoys conducting historical research and is a member of the Board of Directors of the American G.I. Forum Archives and the Tejano Genealogical Society.  She has written several technical publications and wrote a history of West Austin.  She is also a member of the Coastal Bend Women’s American G.I. Forum.  Currently, she writes for Somos Primos, an online historical publication dedicated to Hispanic heritage issues and for the Corpus Christi Caller Times, a newspaper. She has appeared in several PBS documentaries A Class Apart, the Longoria Affair and Children of Giant.

Ms. Garcia has received many special honors and appointments including the following: Outstanding Hispanic Woman in Austin by LULAC, 1994; elected representative to Group Insurance Advisory Committee for Texas General Land Office and Texas Veterans Land Board, 1990; Certificate De Merite-Le Comite National des Vins de France, 1989; U.S. Senate Service Award, 1988; Co-Chair of Austin Travis County MHMR (10 years).

Ms. Garcia resides in Austin, Texas with her pet children Shirley and Donna.

Hector Galan

Hector Galán (Producer/ Director/Editor/Exec. Producer) Hector Galán is an independent documentary filmmaker based in Austin, Texas. He has contributed over forty hours of programming to the national PBS television schedule, including eleven episodes for the provocative series FRONTLINE, two programs for the PBS series The American Experience, and the landmark four­part PBS series, Chicano! History of the Mexican American Civil Rights Movement, Visiones: Latino Art & Culture, a six episode series, and the award winning feature film on the band Los Lonely Boys, Cottonfields and Crossroads. Most recently his six-hour series, The Road from Christ to Constantine, filmed in the Middle East and Europe was broadcast on PBS as was his documentary feature, Children of Giant. His work has garnered numerous awards and recognitions including two Imagen Awards, the Cine Golden Eagle Award, the Telly Award, SXSW Best Documentary, the Golden Apple, and the Blue Ribbon Award and numerous festival awards.

John Valadez Photograph, 2016

John Valadez is a Peabody Award winning filmmaker with two Emmy nominations. He has written and directed a dozen nationally broadcast documentary films for PBS and CNN over the past 18 years.

Last year two of his films War and Peace, about Latinos in World War II, and Prejudice and Pride about the Chicano movement aired on the landmark PBS documentary series Latino Americans.   John’s films have tackled such diverse subjects as the false imprisonment of a leader of the Black Panther Party; Latino gangs in Chicago; segregation in America’s schools; the history of Latino civil rights; and the genocide of Native Americans in the Southwest.  They have garnered top prizes at film festivals from San Francisco to Mumbai, have been broadcast across the United States, Canada and Europe, and have been featured at major museums and cultural institutions - places like The Museum of Modern Art in New York City, The National Gallery of Art in Washington, Lincoln Center, and the Hirschhorn Museum.

John grew up in Seattle, taught photography in India, and today lives in a small New England village in upstate New York.