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Rotary Names El Charco Director Mario Hernández Citizen of the Year

Hernández looking toward a better future

By Robin Loving

Seven years ago, El Charco Director Mario Hernández, disillusioned with the pursuit of the American dream in the United States, set his sights on transforming the lives of his hometown countrymen in San Miguel. This year, El Charco’s 25th, Hernández is being recognized as Rotary’s Citizen of the Year for doing just that.

Rotary Presentation
El Charco Director Mario Hernández:
Citizen of the Year
Tue, Feb 16, 12:30pm
Hotel Misión
Salida a Querétaro 1
152 3709

Hernandez spent his childhood in Los Angeles, California, where his mother was a seamstress and his father manufactured furniture. His father completed only the fourth grade, and his mother didn’t go to school until she was 55. Hernández went on to be the first in his family to earn various bachelor’s and master’s degrees here in sociology, underground water, and integrated watershed management, and now hopes to complete a doctorate in philosophy.

He worries about social inequities in the present and future and social disengagement. Therefore, he is dedicated to trust-building and generating affinities between individuals and groups to create a sense of belonging and revive local biodiversity to produce more food and water. Hernandez believes that survival depends on back-to-basics living. Social equality is his driver. “Today is the sum of yesterday’s decisions,” says Hernández. “We still see one another as categories of people rather than an interconnected whole,” he continued.

“People have been divided and deprived of sufficient opportunities for social participation,” said Hernández. “They need to be heard and recover opportunities to interact in dialogues of knowledges. We have forgotten the strength of our culture. We need to build on that and thereby dignify the human again.”

“I am very gratified to receive this honor from Rotary as their cisterns are transforming people’s lives,” said Hernandez, who is worried about the fact that our aquifers are not recharging and that some water in our state has fluoride, arsenic, mercury, and lead in it. He is eager for folks to attend a three-day water forum here in March, whether they be citizens, environmentalists, or scientists, in order to further address “our water crisis.”

Come to Rotary on Tuesday, February 16, at 12:30pm at Hotel Misión, Salida a Queretaro 1, to see Hernandez receive this honor. The meeting will be free and in English. Parking is available on premises, and attendees are encouraged to come early due to a larger than ordinary anticipated audience.

Rotary unites neighbors, community leaders, and global citizens for the common good. For more information, contact Rotary President David McGinnis at, and Hernandez at 154 4715 or Also, see and


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