The NTCIC family has lost one of its most respected board members but has gained a wealth of knowledge, passion for others, and inspiration from the late Pete Garcia. Pete was the former CEO of Chicanos Por La Causa (CPLC), one of Arizona’s most influential organizations for the underserved. Pete built CPLC’s many services in ways that provided help for Arizona’s Chicanos who needed access to capital, jobs and affordable housing. He later founded and served as President of the Victoria Foundation, a natural outgrowth of CPLC’s work in Arizona.
NTCIC Board Chairman Irvin Henderson was a long-time friend and colleague of Pete. Recognizing that Pete embodied a unique perspective on how to build and grow a successful organization and provide services to people in need, Irvin recommended him to the NTCIC Board of Directors in January of 2009.
Pete was a contributing leader of NTCIC’s New Markets Tax Credit Advisory Committee and member of the Public Policy and Governance Board Committees. All committees benefited by his experience and connections. As NTCIC New Markets Advisory Committee Chair, “Pete oversaw all of our considerations of how to improve our implementation of the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC),” shared Chairman Henderson. “From the beginning of the program Pete served on several advisory committees for the NMTC and had a national perspective on what other CDEs were doing. He always understood the complicated nature of serving community and serving investors at the same time.” Pete’s understanding of the NMTC program helped NTCIC in its early years of maximizing NMTC investment opportunities.
As a member of the Public Policy Committee, Pete leveraged his political connections on Capitol Hill to help educate Latino legislators and members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus on the importance of federal tax credit incentives such as the Historic Tax Credit and the NMTC, both prominent lines of business for NTCIC as well as critical tools for economic development nationwide. He also was an advocating member of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) where his presence and voice put pressure on banks to serve the underserved.
Pete’s legacy is embodied in the institutions he left behind and the individuals he motivated to provide community service. “This is the example that he forged for his people and all of us as leaders. It is the change that he lived for every single day,” said Henderson. “Sarah, his beloved wife; Hilario, his son; Illana, his daughter; and his many relatives, colleagues, and friends are now left to continue that struggle, but the best way to honor any great leader is to continue the struggle for their dream.”