Community Conversations to explore San Antonio election challenges

If you’ve ever scratched your head and wondered why elections often seem so dysfunctional, then you’ll want to attend the next Community Conversations at St. Mary’s University.

On March 8, the topic will be “Challenges to San Antonio City Elections and Voting: A Representative and Accountable System?”

Three panelists will discuss their respective areas of expertise:

  • The Honorable Ron Nirenberg, San Antonio City District 8 Representative, will focus on low voter turnout in city elections.
  • Henry Flores, Ph.D., is Director of the Masters of Public Administration Program, Distinguished University Research Professor, and Professor of Political Science at
    St. Mary’s University. He will discuss the structure of elections and voter behavior.
  • Laura Barberena, Ph.D., Political Communications Consultant and owner of Viva Politics, LLC, will describe the challenges women face in running for office.

The discussion will be moderated by Rebecca Q. Cedillo, Chairman of the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

The program begins at 6 p.m. Afterward, there will be a question and answer session with the audience. Community Conversations will be held on the St. Mary’s campus in the University Center, Conference Room A. The event is free and open to the public.

The Community Conversations series is a part of the Institute for Public Administration, Politics and Public Policy at St. Mary’s University, which is housed within the St. Mary’s Graduate Program in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. One of the primary goals of the Institute is to develop outreach programs that foster dialogue between the University, the public, government agencies and nonprofits to address important public issues.

This event is part of the University’s celebration of Women’s History Month.


St. Mary's University, founded in 1852, is the first institution of higher learning in San Antonio and the oldest Catholic university in the Southwest. It offers 75 programs, including doctoral and law programs, and has a diverse student population of about 3,800 of all faiths and backgrounds. Its vision, as a Catholic and Marianist liberal arts institution, is to become one of the finest private universities in the region, a gateway for graduates to professional lives as ethical leaders in Texas, the nation and the world.

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