Carlos and Malú Alvarez have committed a $20 million gift to The University of Texas at San Antonio College of Business.
The gift from the Alvarez family is the first of its kind in the university’s history and will be used to advance research-enhancing activities, including establishing endowed faculty positions, graduate research fellowships and undergraduate research programs.
In recognition of the significance of this gift, The University of Texas System Board of Regents has authorized the renaming of the College of Business to the Carlos Alvarez College of Business, making it the first named college at UTSA.
“We are very proud to support UTSA and its outstanding students, many of whom—like me—are first-generation Mexican Americans,” said Alvarez, co-chair of UTSA’s Campaign Leadership Council. “My previous support for UTSA dates back to 2006. As a result of UTSA’s stewardship of my previous gifts, and its success in growing and attracting high-caliber students, I was compelled to make this gift to the College of Business and support the largest business school in San Antonio, where I built my own business.”
“This gift is a transformational moment for UTSA and the College of Business and will advance our mission to become a great public research university,” said UTSA President Taylor Eighmy. “The Alvarezes’ longstanding philanthropic support of UTSA and educational institutions nationwide is a testament to their commitment to fostering generations of future business leaders.”
Carlos Alvarez’ success story began in June 1981 in Austin when he sold the very first cases of Corona in the United States. Carlos and Malú Alvarez moved to San Antonio with their two daughters in 1986 and founded The Gambrinus Company, which became the U.S. importer for the Grupo Modelo beer brands. For the next 20 years, Gambrinus was responsible for selling and marketing what would become the most successful brand in contemporary beer marketing history—Corona Extra.
In 1989, Alvarez acquired the Spoetzl Brewery in Shiner, Texas. At that time, the historic Texas brewery had been in decline for several years and faced serious financial difficulties. Having seen Austin’s developing consumer support for Shiner and recognizing the brewery’s heritage which dates back to 1909, he became convinced of the brand’s potential. After investing in the brewery’s facilities and in selling and marketing efforts behind its beers, today Shiner is a leading independent craft brewery in the U.S. with Shiner Bock as its flagship brand. Gambrinus also owns and operates the Trumer Brewery in Berkeley, California, brewer of Trumer Pils, the most awarded pilsner in the world and a leading brand in the Bay Area.
A prominent community leader, Alvarez serves on the boards of Cullen/Frost Bankers Inc.; United Way of San Antonio; the World Affairs Council of San Antonio; and is a member of Haven for Hope’s Leadership Advisory Council.
At the national level, he serves on the boards of National Public Radio and the World Affairs Council of America, both in Washington, D.C. He is a trustee of Davidson College in Davidson, North Carolina; a former trustee of School Year Abroad, North Andover, Massachusetts; and a member of The University of Texas System’s Chancellor’s Council.
Recognized as a legendary Texas businessman, Alvarez was inducted into the Texas Business Hall of Fame in 2010. In 2011, he received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, which celebrates inspiring immigrants to the United States whose philanthropy works for the betterment of their communities.
Alvarez received a bachelor’s degree in biochemical engineering from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and an honorary doctorate from St. Mary’s University.
Malú and Carlos, you have our highest degree of respect and gratitude. UT System and UT San Antonio pledge to make the Carlos Alvarez College of Business the best of its kind in the region and the state. Thank you for allowing us the privilege of uniting your name with UTSA. It’s an inspiration to our faculty and our students, and especially to the generation of students who will carry the Alvarez name on their diplomas.
Chancellor, The University of Texas System
I think this gift from Carlos and Malú Alvarez will be transformational. We are catching UTSA at a really unique time and place. We have tremendous leadership with Taylor Eighmy as our president, we have great momentum with the City of San Antonio and the downtown campus, and to boost our business school with this gift is the perfect gift at exactly the right time.
Regent, The University of Texas System Board of Regents
Carlos Alvarez is a remarkable entrepreneur, and I can’t think of anyone more appropriate to represent the business school of UTSA. Carlos and Malú have shown themselves to be extremely generous philanthropists for so many areas and causes; they are one of San Antonio’s greatest assets.
Chairman and CEO, Cullen/Frost Banker
This gift is going to give tremendous recognition to the school of business allowing UTSA to recruit exemplary faculty and staff whose focus will be to educate the next generation of leaders. Carlos and Malú have been wonderful leaders in our community because of the tremendous amount of philanthropy that they have provided to benefit health and education. They truly want the next generation of students to be able to do great things in our community and across this nation.
Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D.
UT Health San Antonio, Carlos and Malú Alvarez Distinguished University Chair
The Alvarez Scholarship impacted my time at UTSA in a very positive way as I was able to graduate on time because of the funds that I received. This scholarship not only impacted me, but my family as well. I was the first in my family to graduate with a bachelor’s and master’s degree.
Dominique Edwards, ’17
USAA, Former Carlos Alvarez Scholarship Recipient
Carlos and Malú Alvarez are a great representation of what it means to give back and support students. They have provided unconditional support to UTSA’s programs and its students, and they inspire alumni and community members to give back in their own way.
Carla Juarez, ’17