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Rubén Hinojosa Congressional Papers

 Collection — Container: 146
Identifier: ELIBR-0146

Content Description

The Congressional Papers of Rubén Hinojosa consists of 291 linear feet of materials dating from 1997 - 2016. The papers were created during Rubén Hinojosa's time as an elected official in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1997 - 2016, representing the 15th Congressional District in South Texas. The collection consists of legislative material as well as casework of local projects and issues.


  • Creation: 1996 - 2016


Conditions Governing Access

Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Confidential material may include, but is not limited to, educational, medical, and personnel records. Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley assumes no responsibility.

Conditions Governing Use

Materials in our collections may be protected by copyright. Publication, transmission, or reproduction of items protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Whenever possible, accurate information about the copyright status of material is provided in the item record and/or documentation for material in the collection. The Library does not own the copyright in much of the material in its collection and is therefore unable to grant copyright permission to publish those items. It is the researcher's responsibility to determine copyright or other use restrictions and obtain proper permission when publishing or distributing materials found in these collections. Researchers must make their own assessments of rights in light of their intended use. Additional information about copyright and fair use is available via the Library's Copyright Guide at

Biographical / Historical

Congressman Rubén Hinojosa, a longtime businessman and native of the Rio Grande Valley / South Texas, was elected to represent Texas’ 15th Congressional District in November 1996.

The Congressman served on two House Committees: Education and the Workforce; and Financial Services. He was also Co-Chair of the Democratic Caucus Education Task Force.

Congressman Hinojosa has distinguished himself as an advocate for education, Social Security, health care, agriculture, veterans’ issues, economic development and infrastructure projects. He demonstrated his ability to serve as a bipartisan consensus builder when he helped in the fight to create an emergency relief package providing $25 billion over a four-year period for farmers and ranchers who suffered devastating losses due to natural disasters from 1998 through 2001.

Hinojosa was also instrumental in expanding local access to quality health care for South Texas veterans. For the first time, inpatient services (including surgery) are available at approved hospitals in Hidalgo and Cameron Counties, eliminating 80% of the need to travel to San Antonio. Hinojosa also worked with Veterans Administration to establish primary care community-based outpatient clinics in the cities of Alice, Beeville, Kingsville and Uvalde. Hinojosa also worked with state legislators to secure a U.S. / State Veterans Memorial Cemetery in South Texas.

Congressman Hinojosa’s lifetime commitment to education on the local, regional, state and federal levels has created opportunities for all students to pursue higher education. His Education Committee assignment, as well as his appointment to chair the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Education Task Force, were critical to the success of his first major legislative initiative entitled “The Higher Education for the 21st Century Act.” This bill secured an increased authorized funding level of $69 million for Hispanic Serving Institution (HSIs); enhanced visibility of HSIs within the Higher Education Act; relaxed the restrictions for institutional eligibility for HSI designation; and improved the ways and financial mean by which HSIs strengthen curriculum development, academic instruction, mentoring, and college libraries.

As a member of the Financial Services Committee, Congressman Hinojosa was a member of the Subcommittee on Capital Markets, Insurance, and Government-Sponsored Enterprises; Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy, Technology, and Economic Growth; and Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit.

As a former member of the Small Business Committee, Hinojosa increased access to capital and loans for small businesses; removed tax and regulatory burdens; and promoted business growth and opportunity in economically depressed areas through the new and improved Small Business Administration programs. He also led the successful effort to create a Womens’ Business center at the University of Texas-Edinburg.

Not only has Congressman Hinojosa made his mark in Washington, D.C., but he also brought Washington to South Texas. He invited and hosted many high-profile leaders to the 15th Congressional District to speak directly with residents about their needs and concerns. Among them were President Clinton, Vice-President Al Gore, Secretary of Agriculture Dan Glickman, Secretary of Commerce William Daley, Secretary of Education Richard Riley, Secretary of Labor Alexis Herman, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Hershel Gober, Small Business Administrator Aida Alvarez, House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt, and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. Congressman Hinojosa also accompanied President Clinton as a member of various trade and commerce delegations to Mexico and South American from 1997-2000.

Prior to his being elected to the House of Representatives, Congressman Hinojosa served twenty years as President and Chief Financial Officer of a family-owned food processing company, H&H Foods.

Born in Edcouch, Congressman Hinojosa attended Mercedes High School and earned a BBA and MBA from the University of Texas in Austin and in Edinburg, respectively.

[Adapted from the Biography of Congressman Rubén Hinojosa and can be found in his Congressional Papers]


291 Linear Feet

226 Boxes (225 Record boxes and 1 Document box)

Language of Materials



Intellectually arranged into series, subseries, and subgroups, alphabetically and chronologically.

Custodial History

A large part of the collection was temporarily housed at the Washington National Records Center which is administered by the National Archives and Records Administration while Congressman Rubén Hinojosa was in office.

Condition Description

Excellent condition


Please contact University Library, Special Collections and University Archives at (956) 665-2726 or via email at for more information and requests.

Deandra Portner
2019 August 23
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Repository Details

Part of the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Special Collections and Archives, Edinburg Campus Repository

ELIBR 4.100
University Library
1201 West University Drive
Edinburg TX 78539-2999
(956) 665-2726