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Regional Perspectives: Cultural Landscapes, Environment, and Conservation
[Theme: Region]

Congreso 2022

This session will discuss regional work and perspectives on traditional and cultural building methodologies, environmental education, cultural heritage, and celebrating culinary and food traditions. In addition, participants will share how they approach the field and provide insight into new strategies, successes, and challenges in working with Latinx cultural landscapes and living heritage.

Facilitator: Eddie Torrez, Latinos in Heritage Conservation


Francisco Uvina, University of New Mexico

Juan Pérez Sáez, Environmental Learning for Kids

Lane Santa Cruz, City of Tucson

Edward Torrez, AIA, LEED, AP, is a preservation architect and principal at Bauer Latoza Studio in Chicago, Illinois. Edward has been specializing in Historic Preservation, Adaptive Reuse, Rehabilitation, Interior Renovation and Urban Planning projects in Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Texas for over 27 years. He currently serves as Advisor for the National Trust of Historic Preservation, member of the Illinois Historical Sites Advisory Council, Executive Committee member of Latinos in Heritage Conservation, member of Landmark Illinois’ Reinvestment Committee, and the Grant Park Advisory Council’s Sculpture and Monument Committee.

Francisco Uviña Contreras received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Architecture, minoring in Art History in 1994 from the School of Architecture and Planning (SAAP) at the University of New Mexico. Francisco received his Masters of Architecture and Masters Certificate in Preservation and Regionalism in 2009 from the University of New Mexico where he graduated with distinction. Francisco worked for Cornerstones Community Partnerships, a non for profit organization, from 1994 to 2008 to assist with field assessments, documentation of historic buildings, adaptive re-use design and new design work utilizing traditional building methods as the Architectural/Technical Manager. In 1996 he served as the only North American representative to participate in an international five-week training program in Perú in the restoration, conservation and new design of earthen buildings; the program was sponsored by CRATerre in France, The Getty Conservation Institute in the US and the International Center for the Study of the Preservation & Restoration of Cultural Properties (ICCROM) in Italy. In 1999 Francisco was invited on contracted to teach in the same five week Latin American program in Perú. Francisco is the co-author and illustrator of Cornerstones’ Adobe Architecture, A Conservation Handbook. Since 2009 Francisco has been teaching architecture undergraduate and graduate design studios, preservation courses, as well as planning courses and studios at the School of Architecture and Planning at the University of New Mexico. In the present Francisco serves as the Director for the Historic Preservation and Regionalism Graduate Certificate Program at the School of Architecture and Planning at the University of New Mexico.

Juan Pérez Sáez is the Executive Director of Environmental Learning for Kids (ELK). Juan has dedicated his personal and professional life to conservation, advocacy, environmental education, and stewardship. While building community and creating opportunities for many others to connect with the outdoors. With more than 15 years of experience in this field, Juan worked as the Senior Manager for Strategic Partnerships with the Wilderness Society. He played a leading role in designing and implementing advocacy campaigns driving federal policy to protect public lands, climate, and western communities. He worked for several nonprofit organizations in Latin America and the United States, as well as the U.S. Federal Government. Juan has a Bachelor of Engineering in Environmental Management from the Universidad de Panamá, a Master of Science in Environment and Natural Resources from The Ohio State University and was also a Fulbright Scholar recipient between 2012-2014. Juan is actively engaged with his community as a board member for the Cottonwood Institute, board member for the Next 100 Coalition, Commissioner for The Colorado Governor’s Commission for Community Service, and a member of the Colorado Outdoor Recreation Advisory Council.

Lane Santa Cruz is a second-generation Tucsonan, born and raised in the Southside. Her parents both emigrated from Sonora, Mexico and met in their early twenties at the El Rio Neighborhood Center. After graduating from Desert View High School, she left for a university in Alabama on a tennis scholarship, then returned home to work her way through courses at the University of Arizona (U of A). There she earned her PhD in Teaching, Learning, and Sociocultural Studies. She continues to teach courses at the U of A’s Department of Mexican American Studies and College of Education. Before running for office, Lane worked as a council aide for Ward 1 and spent over a decade working on issues related to sexual/gender violence, food justice, migrant rights, DIY bicycle mechanics, and ethnic studies. Lane is also a mother of four children, ages 4 to 14. As the vice mayor, Lane’s mission is to serve as the bridge between working families and city hall.

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