To inform readers about the candidates seeking their votes on the November ballot, the San Antonio Report asked all candidates to answer the following questions. We edited answers for clarity, not substance or grammar, and we did not fact-check responses. We restricted responses to 200 words for each question.

Read other candidates’ answers here.

Position sought:

Alamo Colleges, District 2

Incumbent?

No.

Link to campaign website:

https://gloriarayforaccd.com/

Age:

77

What is your educational background? Where did you go to school growing up and what is the highest level of education you completed?

Graduate of Brackenridge High School, San Antonio TX, 1961

If you have completed higher education, what degrees or certifications have you earned and from where? In what years did you complete these degrees or certifications?

United States Air Force
Logistics Management Environmental Resources (108 hours) 1973
Extension Course Institute, Directorate of Materiel Mgt. (180 hrs) 1974
SA-ALC Material Mgt. Training Course (738 hours) 1974
Southwest Center Alamo Community College District
USAF Supervisors Course (53 hours) 1983
Office of Personnel Mgt. (OPM) – Budget Formulation 1979
Army and Air Force Budgeting Systems – 1980
Commissary Officer’s Course (120 hours) – 1981
OPM – Advanced Management Seminar – 1983
U. S. Army Engineering Training- Management Development 1985
Building an Effective Logistics Team – 1988
Senior Leadership Program-National Security – 1989
Executive Development-Current Issues -1990
Executive Development – Management Development – 1991
Logistics Support Analysis – 1992
OPM – Principals of Federal Appropriations Law – 1993
Managerial Competencies – 1993
Federal Budgetary Policy and Processes – 1994

UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT SAN ANTONIO
Executive and Professional Programs –
Executive Leadership -1986
The Road That Leads to Leadership – 1988

DUN & BRADSTREET BUSINESS EDUCATION SEMINAR – 1986

NICOLE SHAPIRO & ASSOCIATES – Challenge of Change – 1990

DEFENSE SYSTEMS MANAGEMENT COLLEGE
Management of Acquisition Logistics – 1992

What is your current occupation, employer, and job title?

Retired

List any previous elected offices that you held and the term you held that office. List any elected offices you sought and the years you sought those offices.

None

Why do you feel you are the best candidate for the office you are seeking?

I have been a tireless volunteer in my community. I retired from Kelly AFB in 1994 as a Senior Official where I had oversight of the largest organizational budget (over $1 Billion) at Kelly. I retired after 28 years of service and have been serving on various boards and commissions since then. I was appointed by Gov. Rick Perry to the board of the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs where I served a Vice-Chair. I served as President of the Fiesta San Antonio Commission, as well as Commission Chair for the annual MLK birthday celebration, two of the largest city events managing thousands of volunteers. I have served Alamo Colleges for 13 years as Chair of the Citizens Advisory Committees to usher in over $1 Billion dollars in Capital Improvements across all campuses and to include the Chairmanship to advise the Board in the construction of the District’s new headquarters. I worked cooperatively with the leadership of the District and the Presidents of all five campuses. I know this community well; my many years of diverse public service makes me imminently qualified to be an asset to this Board.

What three issues do you feel are most important to your constituents?

  1. Fostering Student Success in all educational disciplines
  2. Academic/Workforce Education and Certifications
  3. Expand Tuition Assistance/Work Study/Internship Programs

If you are elected, what will be your top priorities once you take office?

I commit to building future national leaders as career-ready learners to become community contributors and global citizens, I will collaborate to generate meaningful, high-impact scholarship through academic, as well as workforce education models for our students to succeed in our global, interdependent society.

For incumbents: What accomplishments are you most proud of during your time in office? Is there any vote or decision you would change now looking back?

N/A

For non-incumbents: Would you do anything differently from the current representative holding the office you’re seeking?

I have been a tireless volunteer in my community. I retired from Kelly AFB in 1994 as a Senior Official where I had oversight of the largest organizational budget (over $1 Billion) at Kelly. I retired after 28 years of service and have been serving on various boards and commissions since then. I was appointed by Gov. Rick Perry to the board of the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs where I served a Vice-Chair. I served as President of the Fiesta San Antonio Commission, as well as Commission Chair for the annual MLK birthday celebration, two of the largest city events managing thousands of volunteers. I have served Alamo Colleges for 13 years as Chair of the Citizens Advisory Committees to usher in over $1 Billion dollars in Capital Improvements across all campuses and to include the Chairmanship to advise the Board in the construction of the District’s new headquarters. I worked cooperatively with the leadership of the District and the Presidents of all five campuses. I know this community well; my many years of diverse public service makes me imminently qualified to be an asset to this Board.

How do you assess your community college district or school district’s performance during the pandemic and the way it served students?

I believe Alamo Colleges has done an exemplary job of marshaling the student body through the ravages of the COVID 19 Pandemic. The District experienced higher completion rates at the end of this school year than in previous years. Each of the Sixty-five thousand students has been helped with tech assistance and no cost testing. Over $10 million dollars in federal student aid has been provided to over 17,000 students to help them with food, rent and utility assistance and through the use of the Districts Student Impact Funds. The five colleges within the District have stepped up their student assistance programs to effectively help students get through these trying times, together. Even as the colleges have stepped into the Fall Semester with unprecedented financial needs for those affected by COVID 19, they have been committed to cooperative support, leveraging all available Financial Aid resources.

How will you approach budgeting for your district given the economic uncertainties? What are your budget priorities you would want to keep intact?

First and foremost, I, as a Board member, would focus on the overall District Budget, not the individual budgetary needs of District 2. My incentives are to: a. Not violate any Board Budgeting Policies; b. Maintain tuition rates at current levels; c. Advocate to NOT RAISE taxes and to; c. Maintain the District Permanent Fund to be inviolate, unless there is an absolute emergency, as well as to ensure it is invested wisely. Most of our 100 thousand students are working adults. Individual student success must be address through varied applied educational and budgeting methodologies. Within the District, optimum student success is managed within the “Six Institutes” as follows: 1. Business & Public Services; 2. Creative & Communications Arts; 3. Empowerment Center; 4. Health & Biosciences; 5. Science & Technology (STEM); and, 6. Veterans Affairs. By efficiently establishing the initial budgets and constantly adjusting fund balances across those individual budgetary needs, we will be able to bridge the gaps across Institutes to ensure optimum budgetary resources are available to efficiently cover staff, faculty, facilities, equipment and materials requirements across those six Institutes. In this season of COVID, maximum budgetary flexibility is an absolute MUST.

How do you plan to work to overcome academic gaps that may have developed or widened during the pandemic?

In this season of COVID, I believe we are not so much experiencing an academic gap so much as we are experiencing a RE-TRAINING gap. COVID has rendered many occupations obsolete. Therefore, the largest educational needs, in addition to conventional academics are workforce re-training into the viable occupations of today and tomorrow. To that end, Alamo Colleges has been called upon to be the primary education catalyst in the local Workforce Recovery Program which is intended to help residents most impacted with job losses due to COVID to get back into the workforce. Alamo Colleges is tasked to re-train up to 5,000 people in conjunction with the City, County and Workforce Solutions. There is no other single educational institution more able to provide broad training and certifications than Alamo Colleges.

San Antonio Report Staff

San Antonio Report Staff

This article was assembled by various members of the San Antonio Report staff.