Federico Subervi: The man walking in the path of Lionel C. Barrow Jr.
By Petra Guerra
It has been an honor to have been part of the committee to elect Federico Subervi as the winner of the Lionel C. Barrow Jr. Award. In trying to write up something to speak about Federico’s life and why he was selected for this award, I spoke to several folks and everyone insisted insisted that Federico functions just as Barrow would. Barrow, in spite of having already retired continued to fight for equality and inclusion.His accomplishments were numerous; the creation on the Commission on the Status of Minorities and later the creation of Minorities and Communication are great examples of Barrow’s work. But he continued the struggle, even when he was ridiculed and criticized. He never stopped, what others thought of him was not an obstacle in his struggle to make sure that AEJMC was inclusive.
Looking at Federico’s work, he is the reflection of Barrow. He is tough skinned, criticisms just fly above his head. Even after many accomplishments, he established the Center for the Study of Latino Media and Markets and led research on emergency communication and mentoring of numerous students. Many of these students are now professionals in the field of journalism and mass communication. And the establishing of Latinitas Inc., the not for profit organization, is dedicated to empower Latina youth via media and technology.
There are his numerous Fulbright research appointments; this includes his stint in Brazil in 1988- 1989 and Chile in 2011. Some of the students he has mentored refer to him as “an innovative educator” always creating much needed classes in politics, advertising, and ethics in the media to name a few. Let us also include the numerous papers and chapters about minorities in journalism and mass communication he has published. Numerous accomplishments, yet not enough for him to stop or slow down, he continues his work, producing his latest book, “The Mass Media and Latino Politics.” And the list goes on and on. He is presently looking into Latino consumers, among other research.
Like Barrow, Federico does not see the end of the tunnel; he continues his research and work. He has served on numerous boards and commissions including heading the Commission on the Status of Minorities and just recently elected to the Board of Directors of the Latino Public Radio Consortium and serve as the academic officer of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists. And best of all, in his own words, “proud of my daughter, who is now a communication professional on her own.”
Federico is a very deserving Barrow Award winner; he is walking in the steps of Barrow and just as Barrow, does not know when to call it quits.