Leslie Gurrola,
Greater Texas Foundation


Greater Texas Foundation will honor the legacy of Dr. Diana Natalicio with contributions to endowed scholarships in her name at The University of Texas at El Paso and El Paso Community College.

Dr. Diana Natalicio served as President of The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) for 31 years until her retirement in 2019. During her tenure, Dr. Natalicio built UTEP’s reputation as a nationally recognized public research institution focused on Hispanic student success. Dr. Natalicio also established a nationally recognized alliance between UTEP and El Paso Community College (EPCC) that continues to serve as a model partnership between a community college and university.

Dr. Natalicio passed away suddenly on September 24, 2021, but her influence on Hispanic student success and insistence that low-income students be given the opportunity to access higher education lives on.

“Dr. Natalicio’s passion for student success is well aligned with the foundation’s vision to ensure that all Texas students have equal opportunity to access and succeed in postsecondary education,” said Mr. Ralph Rushing, Chair of Greater Texas Foundation’s Board of Directors. “We are proud to honor her legacy by increasing access to financial aid for students.”

Greater Texas Foundation’s contributions will support the launch of The Diana Natalicio Institute for Hispanic-Student Success at The University of Texas at El Paso and add to the established Dr. Diana Natalicio Endowment at El Paso Community College. Contributions to both institutions will be distributed as student financial aid.

“Dr. Natalicio was unwavering in her belief that education is the gateway to opportunity for a better life,” said UTEP President Heather Wilson. “For three decades, she led a university that exemplifies inclusive excellence in higher education for Texas and for the nation. We are thankful to the Greater Texas Foundation for this generous gift in honor of Dr. Natalicio’s legacy.”

“Dr. Natalicio was a fierce proponent of advocating for access and excellence in higher education which benefitted all students in our region,” Dr. William Serrata, EPCC President said. “We are grateful for the generosity of the Greater Texas Foundation to support EPCC students and ensure that Dr. Natalicio’s legacy lives on.”

About Greater Texas Foundation: Greater Texas Foundation is a private foundation based in Bryan, Texas that supports efforts to ensure all Texas students are prepared for, have access to, persist in, and complete a postsecondary education. Since its 2001 inception, the foundation has approved more than $115 million in grants to support Texas students. For more information, visit

About El Paso Community College: EPCC serves nearly 25,000 students and offers 145 degree and certificate programs. Since 1969, the college has remained focused on engaging students, growing community partnerships and fostering excellence.  By creating a college-going culture and implementing innovative student success initiatives, EPCC is transforming the pathway to higher education and building a stronger workforce for our region.

About The University of Texas at El Paso: The University of Texas at El Paso is America’s leading Hispanic-serving university. Located at the westernmost tip of Texas, where three states and two countries converge along the Rio Grande, 94% of our more than 24,000 students are minorities, and half are the first in their families to go to college. UTEP offers 169 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs at the only open-access, top tier research university in America.

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