Illustration By Nuestro Stories
In celebration, today’s Google Doodle pays homage to Raoul A. Cortez, the Mexican American trailblazer in Spanish-language media in the United States.
Google is celebrating what would be Raoul A. Cortez’s 118th birthday with a Doodle, the UPI newswire reports today.
Illustrated by Mexican American artist Rafael Lopez, the Doodle captures the roles that Cortez played – from advancing Latino culture in the media to championing civil rights.
A Spanish-Language Media Trailblazer is Born
Born on this day in 1905 in Veracruz, Mexico, Cortez’s family immigrated to the United States, settling in San Antonio, Texas.
Cortez worked as a reporter for La Prensa, a San Antonio-based, Spanish-language daily newspaper. By the 1930s and 1940s, he owned and operated an agency that introduced performers from Mexico and Latin American countries to U.S. audiences. This entrepreneurial spirit led him to KMAC Radio, where he produced Spanish songs, comedic acts, and sketches, amplifying the richness of Spanish-language content.
“The success compelled him to buy his own radio station, KCOR-AM, and this became the first Spanish-language radio station in the United States in 1946,” Google explains. “Cortez continued building his media empire by starting the first Latino-run U.S. TV station in Spanish– KCOR-TV Channel 41– in 1955.”
Cortez is Remembered
Beyond his contributions to the media, Cortez dedicated his life to civil rights advocacy for U.S. Latinos, notably playing a pivotal role in the Delgado v. Bastrop Independent School District court case (which dismantled the segregation of Mexican Americans in Texas public schools).
Cortez also served two terms as president of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and played a key role in discussions with U.S. and Mexican presidents on immigration reform, contributing to the development of the Bracero Program, which facilitated the migration of Mexican farmworkers under short-term labor contracts.
Cortez passed away on December 17, 1971, in San Antonio. But his legacy lives on.
“Among several honors, in 2015, Cortez and his media programs were included in the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History American Enterprise exhibit,” local news outlet KSAT reports. Plus: “San Antonio dedicated the Cortez branch library on the South Side in his honor.”
What message do you hope people take away from your Doodle? Google asked Doodle artist Lopez, who replied: “Like Raoul, you can make a positive change in life. No matter how big or small your contribution is, the changes will be lasting and remembered.”
Google Doodles Celebrates Talent
Cortez’s “Doodle” art is Google’s way of celebrating his gifts to U.S. culture and history. It’s one of many impressive online art pieces from the tech giant over the past few decades.
By definition, a Google Doodle is a temporary alteration of the Google logo that is displayed on the search engine’s homepage to celebrate and commemorate notable events, holidays, anniversaries, and the lives of famous figures.
The first Google Doodle was created in 1998, when the founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, altered the logo to indicate their attendance at the Burning Man festival. Since then, the concept has evolved into a creative and engaging way to celebrate and acknowledge diverse aspects of human culture and history.
On this date last year, Google celebrated Selena Quintanilla, the “Mexican-American music & entertainment icon, fashion trendsetter, passionate entrepreneur, community philanthropist.”
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