GSA, CBP, Community Leaders Dedicate the Raúl Héctor Castro Port of Entry
October 14, 2015
DOUGLAS, Ariz. — Today, the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) hosted a dedication ceremony to officially designate the United States Customs and Border Protection Port of Entry located at First Street and Pan American Avenue in Douglas, Arizona, as the “Raul Hector Castro Port of Entry”, in honor of the former Governor of Arizona. Earlier this year, Rep. Raul Grijalva, along with several members of the Arizona Congressional Delegation, introduced a bill, which was later signed into law by President Obama, renaming the Douglas Land Port of Entry in honor of Governor Castro.
The event included the official unveiling of the port’s new signage and a dedication ceremony which featured remarks from a number of distinguished guest speakers from the federal, state and local governments, and the Castro family. The Castro family also received an American flag which was flown in Governor Castro’s honor over the capitol in Washington DC, the Arizona state capitol building, Douglas City Hall, and at the port of entry which now bears his name.
The Raul Hector Castro Port of Entry is the second largest commercial port in the state of Arizona. In calendar year 2014, the port of entry processed over 33,000 commercial truck arrivals. The value of imported goods at Douglas during calendar year 2014 was just over $1 billion. Additionally, the port processed more than 1.5 million arriving cars and over 930,000 pedestrians in CY2014, for a combined total of over 3.8 million arriving passengers and pedestrians.
About the Honoree:
- Raúl Héctor Castro (1916 - 2015): Governor Raul H. Castro was born in Cananea, Sonora, Mexico but grew up in Pirtleville, near Douglas, Arizona where he overcame considerable challenges to become a respected Superior Court judge, astute politician and seasoned diplomat. In his illustrious and distinguished career, Castro had the distinction of being the first Mexican-American (and only one to date) to serve as Governor for the State of Arizona as well as Ambassador to El Salvador, Bolivia and Argentina.
Congressman Raul Grijalva said: "As we celebrate Governor Raul Castro, we honor his legacy and contributions to Arizona and our nation. We also honor the City of Douglas and our neighbors in Mexico. It is my hope that the Department of Homeland Security will fully build and staff a Port of Entry here that lives up to the honor of Governor Castro's name."
Congresswoman Martha McSally remarked: “Governor Castro served our state and country for many years as a distinguished public servant and community leader, including as our state’s first and only Mexican-American governor. I was proud to cosponsor and vote in support of the bill renaming the Douglas Port in his honor. I can’t think of a more fitting tribute for a man who served as a pioneer, accomplished public servant, and role model to many seeking to serve and make a difference.”
Mayor Danny Ortega Jr. commented: “Governor Castro has been such a personal inspiration to me. A man of such integrity and class who remained humble throughout his life. It is such an honor to have our port named after not only one of Douglas’ but one of Arizona’s finest citizens.”
Andrew McMahon, Regional Administrator for GSA’s Pacific Rim Region said: “Our land ports of entry play a vital role, in not only the security of our nation, but also in facilitating economic trade and prosperity, cultural exchange, and connecting families and binational communities. With Governor Castro’s apparent ties both to the United States and Mexico, it is fitting that this port between the two countries bears his name.”
Mr. William K. Brooks, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Director Field Operations - Tucson Field Office commented: “CBP is pleased and honored to have one of the ports named after the late governor, which is a fitting tribute to his noteworthy contributions to the state of Arizona.”
Speakers at the celebration event included: Congressman Raul Grijalva; Congresswoman Martha McSally; Douglas Mayor Danny Ortega Jr.; Mexican Consul General in Douglas Jorge Ernesto Espejel Montes; Agua Prietà Mayor Hector Rubalcava Gastelum; Mr. Juan Ciscomani, Director of the Governor’s Southern Arizona Office; Mr. Chris Stoller Michelena, Senator Jeff Flake’s Director of Hispanic Outreach; Mr. Ignacio Castro, Family Representative; Mr. William K. Brooks, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Director of Field Operations - Tucson Field Office; and Mr. Andrew McMahon, GSA Regional Administrator.
U.S. General Services Administration
The mission of GSA is to deliver best value in real estate, acquisition and technology services to government and the American people. The agency delivers this commitment through six priority areas that include: delivering better value and savings; serving our partners; expanding opportunities for small businesses; creating a more sustainable government; leading with innovation; and building a stronger GSA.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.