Booster of everything Pueblo gives time, money
By Jeff Letofsky
The Pueblo Chieftain
Nov. 4, 2017
Being a giver is a good thing.
Just ask Art Gonzales.
He perhaps gives more of his time and money to anything Pueblo. And because of that, he'll be enshrined into the Greater Pueblo Sports Association Hall of Fame on Wednesday along with 12 others.
Gonzales has supported a number of organizations over the years. The long list includes the Pueblo Symphony, Pueblo Municipal Band, Pueblo Community College, Broadway Theater League, Sangre de Cristo Arts Center, Pueblo YMCA, the Medal of Honor Society, Pueblo County Jazz Band and KTSC-TV station.
In addition, he established a Colorado State University-Pueblo baseball endowment in 1997 to provide scholarships to deserving athletes, and contributes to the CSU-Pueblo football and wrestling programs.
Perhaps his most recognizable contribution is to the annual CSU-Pueblo Pack the Park Night where youngsters receive a free clinic from the Pack coaches and players and get to attend a CSU-Pueblo regular-season baseball game. He also spearheads the annual dinner for the CSU-Pueblo baseball alumni.
Gonzales also funded the soccer stadium named in his and his wife's honor on the CSU-Pueblo campus -- Art and Lorraine Stadium.
"The big thing is I want to see these kids get educated," Gonzales said. "With the baseball program, I want them to be successful. They are student-athletes, not athlete-students. They are here to get an education."
Gonzales is a military veteran and a self-made man who worked tirelessly earning a living. He discovered the value of honor, integrity, hard work and trust at an early age and it was those traits to lead to his success as a businessman.
Joining the GPSA adds to a long list of organizations he's a part of including the CSU-Pueblo Athletics Hall of Fame, CSU-Pueblo's Friends of Football and as a sustaining trustee of the CSU-Pueblo Foundation Board.
In a letter of recommendation for the GPSA, Todd Kelly wrote: "Because of his passion and dedication for education, Mr. Gonzales has helped hundred of young adults earn their college degree while competing in intercollegiate sports at Colorado State University-Pueblo. He spends time with CSU-Pueblo student-athletes preaching the value of education and what it will do for them after they graduate. Many former student-athletes credit Mr. Gonzales for not only helping pay for the their education, but for the successes they have achieved after graduation.
"It is my honor to write this letter of recommendation for Mr. Gonzales, not for his athletic ability, but for the lives he has touched through athletics."
In another letter of recommendation, Sel Elizondo wrote: "(Gonzales) is without a doubt, a pillar in the Pueblo community. He has always been a champion for the student-athletes. His generosity and willingness to contribute to the success of our young athletes is quite commendable. His understanding of balance between success in the classroom and excellence in competition is what makes him a very special person. CSU-Pueblo has been very fortunate to have Art in its corner."