The Mexican American Civil Rights Institute celebrated the grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony for its highly-anticipated Visitor Center this month.

“This represents a monumental stride towards the realization of a national Mexican American civil rights history museum,” says Dr. Sarah Gould, Executive Director of MACRI. “We’re delighted to commemorate this occasion with a community event that promises to be a vibrant cultural experience, reflecting the rich tapestry of Mexican American heritage that MACRI seeks to preserve and celebrate.”

MACRI hosted a lively block party featuring performances by the renowned Guadalupe Dance Company, Mariachi Azteca de America, and members of the San Antonio Philharmonic. San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg, Bexar County Judge Peter Sakai, and District 5 City Councilwoman Teri Castillo presented to share remarks, among other special guests.

Founded in 2019, MACRI has been at the forefront of presenting nearly 100 public programs dedicated to Mexican American civil rights history. Notably, MACRI recently collaborated with the US Mint, Smithsonian Institution, and various local nonprofit partners to launch the Jovita Idar quarter in San Antonio. The inauguration of the Visitor Center marks a significant milestone in MACRI’s journey towards establishing the nation’s first museum dedicated to Mexican American civil rights history.

In conjunction with the opening of the Visitor Center, MACRI is proud to announce the selection of the esteemed architectural firm, Ford, Powell, Carson, to conduct a comprehensive site feasibility study for MACRI’s forthcoming permanent museum. With a legacy of designing some of San Antonio’s most iconic buildings and places, Ford, Powell, Carson is well-poised to contribute its expertise to this historic endeavor.

“We are incredibly honored to have been selected by MACRI to help realize their goal of bringing a permanent museum to San Antonio that shares the many contributions Mexican Americans have made to advance democracy in the United States. Our firm’s passion for designing and preserving culturally significant places and spaces perfectly aligns with MACRI’s mission. We look forward to working alongside all the community partners on this critically important project,” Nathan Perez, Principal at Ford, Powell, Carson.

While MACRI is a national organization with engagement that spans the country, it remains unwavering in its commitment to being rooted in San Antonio’s historic Westside, a community deeply intertwined with Mexican American civil rights history.

“When you think about all the things that have happened in San Antonio that are related to the advancement of Mexican American civil rights, it really is historic,” says Henry Cisneros, former San Antonio Mayor and U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. “This is really for all of us, not just people of Mexican American or Hispanic heritage. There is a real story to tell that is important for all Americans, and we couldn’t be more thrilled that it is being done on the historic Westside.”

The Mexican American Civil Rights Institute (MACRI) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving, promoting, and educating the public about Mexican American civil rights history. Established in 2019, MACRI has been a driving force behind numerous initiatives and programs that highlight the contributions and struggles of Mexican Americans in the pursuit of civil rights in the United States. To learn more, visit