Profile: Robert Alvarado, Candidate Commissioner, Pct. 2


By Robert Morales
Robert Alvarado is running for county commissioner, Precinct 2. He is running against incumbent Dolores Urias, along with Shane Grubb and Raul Rodriguez.

Robert Alvarado has been proprietor of A&A Repair since 1988. Following graduation from Van Horn High School, he attended UTI in Phoenix to study mechanics. His shop has remained in the same location.
As a new small business owner, he quickly learned that owning a business was not easy. He and his wife, Minerva, lived with Minerva’s mother for a while to help ends meet. He drove a 1981 boxy Ford Thunderbird. “Everybody knew that I was coming down the road because that car was so noisy,” he recalls.
As it turned out, the location for his business was perhaps one of the best decisions he ever made. Love’s Truck Stop had recently opened in Van Horn, and he soon found that business was coming to him instead of him looking for business.
His motto since his meager start in business has been, “one thing at a time.” He fondly remembers the first tow truck he bought. Mr. Alvarado bought it from Wendell Long, and it had a “homemade bed.” That truck lasted about two years. He bought another tow truck from Manuel Ramirez and that truck was used in the business for about five years.
After several years in the business and more reliable, steady work, Mr. Alvarado took the plunge and purchased a larger tow truck, which served its purpose. As his work gradually progressed, he decided to buy a larger truck. Buying the new, much more expensive truck meant a huge financial risk, but it was a risk he was willing to take. With financing from the former Van Horn State Bank, A&A Repair was now in the big leagues.
He also owns A&A Repair in Sierra Blanca, the former Wayne’s shop across the street from Michael’s Res

taurant. Before taking over Wayne’s, the owner gave Mr. Alvarado some advice: Don’t go into this business unless you can put everything you have into it because if you don’t, your competitors will do it for you.”
His business is brisk, and from an objective viewpoint, A&A is a huge success story, but the success has been tempered with long hours in the beginning with little sleep and a few naps here and there. “I used to have to make two or three trips a day to El Paso,” Mr. Alvarado said. At five hours per trip, that meant at least 15 hours on the road.
Mr. Alvarado attributes his business achievements to his hard work, but he has only high praise for his employees. “You can’t survive without good employees,” he said. 
Mr. Alvarado has never run for elected office. He was offered to serve the unexpired term of Manny Molinar, then a commissioner, when Mr. Molinar ran for county judge. Mr. Alvarado turned down that opportunity because he said he couldn’t dedicate the time. Today, he says that he is at a point where he can commit his time to county issues without having to worry about his business or other obligations.
“It boils down to this,” he said. “People want to see their tax dollars working.”
When asked why a voter in Precinct 2 should vote for Mr. Alvarado, he said, “I want to [help] clean up the county. I want to see equity in the pay of workers. Some workers do much more than what their job description says, and that’s not right. We can’t waste taxpayers’ money, but we have to be fair to all county employees.”
Mr. Alvarado plans to inspect all the county roads in Precinct 2 soon to take notes of which public roads need repair, and to also help educate constituents in is precinct as to which roads are private.
In closing, Mr. Alvarado said he is eager to work with the current make-up of commissioner’s court, or with any new member that may win. “I get along with everyone, but I also know that there would be instances where I may not agree with all of the court, and I’m fine with that. Putting everything aside, I’m going to do what’s best for the county.”


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