Last Updated on January 30, 2024
The “My River POV” series provides readers the opportunity to learn about the unique insight and experiences of the San Antonio River Authority (River Authority) staff and their personal connection to the San Antonio River in hopes of inspiring stewardship of area creeks and rivers.
George Guerra, Systems and Cybersecurity Specialist
Growing up on the west side of San Antonio, some of my fondest childhood memories included playing with my cousins at the San Pedro Park swimming pool and in the San Pedro Springs Park. I loved watching the ducks swim on the canals and trying to catch crawfish. Even though I never caught one, I had a lot of fun watching them. As a native San Antonian, I have been spoiled by the many parks, creeks, and rivers that are located around the area. Growing up here, I thought that every city was just like San Antonio, where everyone had access to many parks, rivers, and creeks. As I got older, I realized that not every city was like San Antonio. I discovered the critical economic impact that places I visited as a child—the River Walk, Brackenridge Park, and San Pedro Springs Park, to name a few— have on our city.
As an avid cyclist, one of my primary routes is along the Mission Reach hike and bike trail that passes through Espada Park. I always enjoy watching the families spending time with each other, having picnics, and fishing. Since we live near Mission Road, both my wife and I often take advantage of cycling the trails. I am thrilled to see other people jogging, cycling, and walking along the trails as well. I believe that all the amenities the trails and parks have to offer are making our community healthier and happier. One of my favorite times of the year to visit the river is during the winter holidays for the annual River of Lights. During this time, my family and I love to walk along the Museum Reach of the San Antonio River Walk and look at all the holiday lights. We also make it a point to go and see the giant musical Christmas tree light show located by the San Antonio River Lock & Dam on Brooklyn Street. It is incredibly beautiful.
This past May marked my 7th work anniversary with the River Authority. I am proud to be an employee of the agency and part of the Information Technology (IT) Department’s infrastructure group. In my scope of work as a systems/cybersecurity specialist, my primary role is to understand our IT infrastructure, consistently monitor our infrastructure, and evaluate threats that could potentially breach the network. As part of the infrastructure group, we are responsible for organizing and overseeing the life cycle and maintenance of the River Authority’s computer infrastructure, including servers, storage, and systems management components.
Honestly, before joining the River Authority, I did not know how much our work impacted the City of San Antonio and nearby communities. Like many other members of the community, I initially thought that the River Authority only maintained nearby rivers and creeks. During the tenure of my work, I began to see that the River Authority offered a lot in addition to maintaining our rivers and streams. We have scientists who monitor rainwater and check the health of our rivers. We have engineers that build and maintain dams and other water infrastructures and staff that operate and maintain four wastewater treatment plants in addition to several lock and dam facilities. We also have staff who educate the community and hold a variety of public events like Fiesta Flotilla, Holiday Night Kayaking, and the River Symposium.
Recently, I found out that the River Authority engineers assisted in the planning, design management, bidding, and construction of the Stargazer (Citali) statue, as well as serving as the project manager for the Door of Equality (La Puerta de Igualdad) sculpture. These public art installations add exquisiteness to the San Antonio River Walk and surrounding areas.
Stargazer (Citlali) by Pedro Reyes is constructed from more than 80 pieces of Mexican volcanic stone
I am constantly learning about all the work the River Authority is doing in the community, and I honestly believe that these efforts can sometimes go unnoticed. I am very proud of the work and the accomplishments that our agency has done in the community, and I am pleased to say that I am an employee of the River Authority.
The River Reach is back!
River Reach is a quarterly, 12-page newsletter that is designed to inform the San Antonio River Authority’s constituents about the agency’s many projects, serve as a communication vehicle for the board of directors and foster a sense of unity and identity among the residents of Bexar, Wilson, Karnes, and Goliad counties.