Reynaldo Vichareli Casas ('96 BA, Political Science)
Tell us about yourself.
I was born in San Antonio, Texas and was raised in Fort Worth. My very first job after graduating from UTA was working in their Office of Undergraduate Admissions. I spent eight years working for the University, recruiting high school students to attend and graduate from UTA. It was incredibly fulfilling work. In 2004, I left UTA and pursued my dream of working on Capitol Hill. I took a job working for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and absolutely loved it. Unbeknownst to me, that opportunity would be short lived after a chance encounter with someone recruiting me to work in media and entertainment.
After spending some time working in American politics, I spent the next 15 years working in public and government relations for MTV Networks, Viacom (now Paramount), and then later starting my own boutique PR firm. I spent those 17 years living in Washington, DC, New York City, and Los Angeles before returning to Fort Worth in 2017 when my father became ill with cancer. I left my career behind to become a caregiver for him until he passed two years later in 2020.
Why did you choose to attend UTA?
My father told me I could receive a solid education for minimal cost and remain close to home.
What did you study at UTA? What attracted you to that field?
I studied political science. The professors in the political science department believed in me and my ability. I will be forever indebited to Dr. Charles Knerr (passed away in 2012) and Dr. Michael Moore.
"Failure is inevitable. Learn from your mistakes,
correct them, and enjoy the ride."
Describe your UTA experience. How did UTA help prepare you for your career?
My UTA experience was special because of the opportunities to connect with not only people from diverse cultures but also with other Latinos that shared similar struggles and successes I had experienced. UTA gave me the opportunity to find my passion for helping people. I used that passion to help high school students prepare for their time at UTA. I used that passion to help constituents by providing and creating sound around impactful legislation. And I use that same passion today to help our community bounce back from challenging times by providing resources through our Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation.
What is your current professional position? What do you do in this role?
My current professional position is Director, Community Impact for the Texas Rangers Baseball Club. In my current position, I oversee our community engagement programs and work with our non-profit partners.
In what ways have you seen the community come together through baseball?
Baseball brings families together; it is that simple. And when families need assistance during challenging times, it is our responsibility as an organization to do our best to assist those in need.
Has the success of the season impacted community involvement? How do you hope to grow community initiatives in the future?
Our fans are enjoying our success on the field. However, we do not only serve our fans. We serve our community whether you cheer for the Rangers or not. As a community, it is important that we all come together and help each other when we can, in good baseball seasons and in seasons when we need to work harder.
Describe your path to your current position. What have you learned along the way?
There definitely was not a straight line to where I am today professionally. I learned early on in my professional career to say “yes,” and not say “no” to work opportunities.
What is one lesson you learned at UTA that has stayed with you still today?
Stay the course. When times are tough, keep moving forward. The process of receiving and earning your education is not meant to be easy. If it were, everyone would have a college education.
What message do you have for the next generation of UTA graduates?
Failure is inevitable. Learn from your mistakes, correct them, and enjoy the ride.
Anything else you would like to share?
I am thankful for my time at UTA and love that my life has come full circle where I now get to work with great people including one of my mentors, Ms. Michele Bobadilla.