By Leonard Rodriguez
This column highlights inspiring stories of Latino leaders. For more than 500 years, Latino men and women have positively influenced the face of United States society. Let us celebrate these outstanding hispanics.

Eduardo Mata

Named musical director and conductor in 1977, Eduardo Mata has guided the Dallas Symphony Orchestra from one success to the next. Stepping in during the orchestra’s lowest point in history, Mata brought the symphony to acclaimed recognition. Under his direction, the orchestra enjoyed a 1985 European tour, two performances at Carnegie Hall and, most importantly, the construction of the $81.5 million Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center in the heart of the Dallas Arts District. The London Daily Telegraph called the orchestra a, “preemptive bid to turn the big five orchestras in the U.S. into a big six,” and tributed Mata’s ability as the “testament to one of the most rapid and remarkable rises in the fortune of any orchestra since the war.”