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Melendrez Center Director Alex Charles Guides Hispanic Youth With Patience & Passion

"Children will not remember you for the material things you provided but for the feeling that you cherished them." -Richard Evans

Kids are a way of life for Alex Charles. He wouldn't have it any other way. Director at the Sonny Melendrez Community Center, located on the West Side of San Antonio, Texas, Charles recently celebrated 30 years of service to youth.

In 1980, while working as a phone clerk for the City of San Antonio, Charles was asked to go door to door and alert residents of the San Juan Homes of a new center in the area. His enthusiasm resulted in being named that center's first director.

Alex has held similar positions at five other City centers, before coming to Melendrez Center.

What impresses me most about Alex is his ability to lead with great patience and his devotion to every child who walks in the door. He and his dedicated staff know every name and every story.

From sports tournaments in January to the Posada (a tradition he began last year) at Christmas, Alex Charles uses his gift of leadership and creativity to give back to the children served by the center. For many, there would no place to go, were it not for the facility.

A talented artist, he personally builds the colorful sets for seasonal programs, never looking at the clock.

Alex Charles is a shining example of service to our community. He is another reason the San Antonio Parks and Recreation Department has continued to inspire our youth to reach their full potential.

-Sonny Melendrez

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