School Board named State Finalist in H-E-B Excellence in Education awards


McAllen ISD is one of just five finalists in the entire state.

This is the second straight year McAllen ISD has been up for a major award through H-E-B. In 2018, McAllen ISD was a state finalist for Best Large District in Texas. 

“I would like to congratulate our School Board for this tremendous honor,” McAllen ISD Superintendent J.A. Gonzalez, Ed.D., said. “These seven individuals have tirelessly devoted themselves to the welfare of our district. Through the Board’s guidance and leadership, our students and school communities have benefitted.”

According to the H-E-B website, this honor is designed to recognize school boards that have demonstrated real leadership in the community based on three basic criteria:

  • Academic/student progress within the district
  • Identification of community needs and specific actions taken based on those needs
  • New and creative methods for community engagement

McAllen ISD’s Board of Trustees includes Daniel Vela, Board President; Marco Suarez, Board Vice-President; Sam Saldivar Jr., Board Secretary; Debbie Crane Aliseda, Trustee; Conrado Alvarado, Trustee; Larry Esparza, Trustee; and Tony Forina, Trustee.


Created in 2002, the H‑E‑B Excellence in Education Awards are designed to honor outstanding public school professionals and to thank them for their dedication and commitment. Through this program, H‑E‑B seeks to pay tribute to those educators who go the extra mile each and every day to serve their students and their communities and who inspire others to do the same.


A panel of H-E-B Excellence in Education judges are planning a visit to McAllen ISD in February.

The other finalists include:

  • Del Valle ISD
  • Socorro ISD
  • Corsicana ISD
  • Grapevine-Colleyville ISD


The grand prize winners will be announced late this spring.