Luis Fernando Parra: Focused on the Future

By Heidi Jaenicke

luisparra

(Photo by Isaac Flater)

Growing up in a Mexican American household, Luis Fernando Parra had a childhood rich in culture and family love. He developed an especially strong relationship with his grandfather, who helped shaped him into the professional he is today.

“As in most Mexican American families or families of Mexican heritage, grandparents are very important. So weekends would definitely be with grandparents, mass on Sundays, that kind of thing,” Parra said. He spent summers helping his grandfather, Bonisacio Bojorquez, at his ranch in Sonora. “Those are some fond memories for me.”

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A twin sister from twin cities: Gabriela Suarez

(Photo by Brenna Carpenter)

(Photo by Brenna Carpenter)

By Brenna Carpenter

If it weren’t for her mother’s distrust of American doctors, Gabriela Suarez would have been born in Nogales, Arizona.

Suarez is a bright, witty and kind native of Nogales, Sonora. When she was two years old her family migrated to Arizona, and as a Nogales local, she crosses the border often.

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Solar power along the U.S.-Mexico border

By Cinthia Guillen

Development of solar power has been growing along the US-Mexico border. In Mexico more attention has been placed on rural areas, while on the U.S side, construction of large solar panel farms is generating big business for developers.
The border region, which is predominately a desert area, has a highly suitable climate for the implementation of solar power plants. Production of electric power has undergone continued improvement with the development of renewable energy sources such as solar- and wind-generated power.

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Happiness as a priority: Maria Luisa Castillo

By Aungelique Rodriguez

(Photo by Aungelique Rodriguez)

(Photo by Aungelique Rodriguez)

Maria Luisa Castillo has been a resident of Nogales, Ariz., since she crossed from Mexico at the age of 3. As a hard-working mother of three children, her priority is their happiness.

Castillo works at the Santa Cruz County One­Stop Career Center, where she helps determine people’s eligibility for jobs. She admits this was not her dream job.

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Mapping the border fence and its effects on wildlife

By Brenna Carpenter

cropmap1

The Sonoran Desert is an area that transcends the international border line and has been largely affected by the border fence, which extends from the Pacific Coast to the Gulf of Mexico and affects the migration of more than just humans. Even though it has breaks, the fence is more heavily concentrated in this region.

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The past impacts the present: Patagonia’s long mining history

By Mariana Dale

[This piece was published by the Nogales International’s “The Weekly Bulletin” for Santa Cruz County on January 1, 2014, under the title,”Mine plan looms as big issue in 2014.”]

Wildcat Silver’s private land as seen from a nearby hillside. (Photo by Mariana Dale)

Wildcat Silver’s private land as seen from a nearby hillside. (Photo by Mariana Dale)

A lone adobe façade stands a stone’s throw from Harshaw Road in the midst of the Patagonia Mountains.  The brown bricks contrast with the sleek metal of the vehicle gate several yards behind it. The barrier marks the entrance to a mining company’s private land.

Now a ghost town, Harshaw was one of dozens of mining encampments that sprang up in Southern Arizona in the 1800s. All but abandoned since the mid-1950s, Canadian-owned Wildcat Silver Company is trying to resurrect the town’s founding industry.

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Unplanned Urbanization: The growth of colonias in Nogales (English version)

This video (5:26 min) presents a view of the colonias in Nogales, Sonora. There are two interviews with residents of the colonias and other interviews with a local geologist and the director of urban planning for the city of Nogales, Arizona. Watch to learn about the history of the development in these areas and also to learn about the problems related to a lack of infrastructure in the area.

Produced by Christa Reynolds

(This video is also available in Spanish: ” Urbanización Espontáneo: El Crecimiento de Colonias en Nogales“)

Two countries, one ecosystem: Habitat fragmentation in the Sonoran Desert

By Brenna Fitzgerald

(Photo by Christa Reynolds)

“The clouds don’t recognize borders, ” says Sergio Avila during a hike along the Atascosa Trail.
(Photo by Christa Reynolds)

It’s a bone-rattling car ride to the Atascosa Trail Lookout, one of the many hiking hotspots in Southern Arizona. The roads are rugged, dusty and narrow. They turn sharp corners revealing deep desert canyons quilted in shadows, and they wind upwards of 2,000 meters. At this elevation and climbing higher, the sky is a polished turquoise blue, and the rocks are cloaked in yellow-green lichen, a sign, says Sergio, of unpolluted air.

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Video

Urbanización Espontáneo: El Crecimiento de Colonias en Nogales (Spanish version video)

Este vídeo (5:46 min) presenta una vista de las colonias en la ciudad de Nogales, Sonora. Hay dos entrevistas con residentes y otras entrevistas con con expertos locales de geología y planificación urbana. Verlo para aprender sobre la historia del desarrollo de estas áreas, y también información sobre los problemas de la infraestructura de la zona.

Producido por Christa Reynolds

(Hay un versión íngles de este vídeo: “Unplanned Urbanization“)

‘Ser puente,’ warrior and mentor: A profile of Teresa Leal

By Zazil Davis-Vazquez

(Photo by Arturo Montoya)

(Photo by Arturo Montoya)

The struggle for people and the well being of the Earth is what drives Teresa Leal, long-time resident of Nogales, Ariz. Leal was born in Navojoa, Sonora, which is at the southernmost tip of the state, in 1945. She is a member of the Opata tribe.

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