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U. T. Regents approve name of Laredo Campus Extension
(8-10-00)

The first building in the new Laredo Campus Extension, part of The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, will be named for the late Laredo philanthropist and businessman D.D. Hachar. The U. T. System Board of Regents approved the designation Thursday in Austin.

The Regents also formally accepted a $2 million commitment to the Laredo campus from the D.D. Hachar Charitable Trust Fund.

The 18,000-square-foot building will house offices of programs funded through the South Texas/Border Region Health Professional Initiative (STBI), which was created by the Texas Legislature in 1995. In the Mid Rio Grande Border Region, STBI provides continuing funds for programs training students in medicine, dentistry, nursing, public health and allied health sciences. The Campus Extension also will accommodate offices of the Area Health Education Center, which seeks to improve access to health education training in Webb and surrounding counties.

The extension, to be constructed near the Mercy Regional Medical Center, will include laboratory space for the South Texas Environmental Education and Research program (STEER), meeting space for continuing education and seminars, and a technologically advanced library connected to comprehensive databases. New buildings may come on line in the next few years.

Total project cost is $4 million. The $2 million gift is the largest disbursement in the history of the D.D. Hachar Charitable Trust Fund.

Demetrio David (D.D.) Hachar was a Lebanese immigrant from Syria who overcame early financial disadvantages. He created a trust to provide financial support to educational institutions seeking to extend facilities and services to students in the Laredo area. Since his death in 1978, the Hachar Trust has become one of the largest philanthropic efforts devoted to advancing health and educational opportunities in South Texas.

"It is appropriate that his legacy will support the creation of a Laredo campus dedicated to enhancing the quality and quantity of health and education programs for generations to come," said John P. Howe, III, M.D., president of the Health Science Center. "It is also fitting that the gateway facility to this campus will be named for this quiet, dignified visionary whose name has become synonymous with educational opportunity in Laredo D.D. Hachar."

Contact: Will Sansom