TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Nick Pesina is a Hispanic East Texas lawyer whose background and culture influences his daily life.
Pesina’s grandparents and mother were born in Mexico, and moved to the United States with the goal of creating a successful future for their family.
Although Pesina was born in Texas and moved to Tyler over seven years ago, he still feels a connection to his grandparents through the businesses he visits on daily basis.
“My mom worked hard, my dad worked hard, and I was a first generation college student,” Pesina said while visiting one of his favorite breakfast locations, Nuevo Leon Bakery in Tyler. “Coming to places like this is something we’ve always done. I mean, this place just feels like you’re walking into your grandparents place.”
Pesina went on to be a first generation college graduate and completed law school at the University of Texas.
In Tyler, Pesina saw a need to connect business men and women with a background similar to his.
He created the Hispanic Professionals Association of Tyler and has watched the group continue to grow over the years.
“We were looking more to cast a wider net for working professionals in different industries,” Pesina said. “It wasn’t that I came here with the idea, I just saw that we lacked that and I thought it could really do a lot of help.”
Members of the association are encouraged to volunteer and network, as they work together to educate and connect with others who are part of the Hispanic and Latino community.
The group has grown to 60 members and provides a platform for small and large business owners, who Pesina says are an important part of a thriving economy.
“You get to really understand who these people are and who their families are,” Pesina said. “Watching them grow and evolve and watching their businesses grow as a second generation comes in is really a special special thing that we have in Tyler.”
Pesina recently announced he is running for City Council District 4, where he continues to hope to connect members of the city.
In the history of the City Council of Tyler, Gustavo Ramirez is the only Hispanic representative who has ever been an elected member.
“You’re going to continue to see people run for office and I think it’s a fresh perspective. I think fresh perspectives are always welcomed, and I think it’s an opportunity for the council and the city. It’s really an opportunity for the community to feel more involved in what’s going on.”
Pesina says no matter what your ethnic background is, the problems you face are synonymous with the problems the city has to find a solution to.
“Tyler issues are Hispanic issues, and Hispanic issues are Tyler issues,” Pesina said.
To be a member of the Hispanic Professionals Association of Tyler, you can connect with them on their website.