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A familiar face to Hidalgo County viewers and all Rio Grande Valley citizens was honored during the Commissioners Court meeting. Channel 5 News Anchor Rick Diaz was recognized for being a broadcasting pioneer and for setting the course for Hispanic and Latino journalists in the Rio Grande Valley.
During his 48-year career as a journalist, Mr. Diaz had offers to leave the Valley to work in large news markets such as Los Angeles, California and Washington, D.C., but chose to stay in his hometown due to his love of family and the Valley. He has been a mentor to many young journalists, a supporter of his community and a nationally recognized newsman.
A video of his career achievements, which was produced by his colleagues at KRGV, was shown prior to the resolution being adopted. Diaz received a standing ovation and several rounds of applause by loyal fans, his colleagues and family.
Diaz was born and raised in McAllen to a family of migrant farm workers. In a speech at a commencement at his alma mater, UTPA, Diaz advised graduates to remember your parents and grandparents because they “helped pave part of the road for you.”
He is most well known for his work at KRGV-TV Channel 5 News where he has been a photographer, reporter, producer, news director and anchor. Diaz created the long-running award-winning news segment “Con Mi Gente” in 1998 featuring the best in small town heroes, businesses and Valley icons.
After a distinguished, nearly 50-year-career in broadcast news, Diaz will vacate his anchor chair and retire on Friday, May 22, 2015. His signature signoff of “Good night y que pasen muy buenas noches,” will be missed.
Diaz thanked the court for the honor and recognition. He also thanked his family for their support and understanding of his long hours, especially covering breaking news events like elections and hurricanes. The meeting room was filled to capacity thanks to many of his KRGV colleagues in attendance, who Diaz described as his second family.
"It has been a great journey and I feel very blessed," said Diaz.
Although retiring, Diaz will continue his work on Con Mi Gente, but intends to travel, see some major league baseball games and spend time with his wife Rosie, a principal at Clover Elementary School in the PSJA Independent School District; daughters Lisa and Laura; and granddaughters Brittany, Brianna, and Laura Rose.
Commissioners Court thanks Rick Diaz for his nearly 50 years of services to the residents of Hidalgo County and wishes him a fruitful retirement.