Raúl Héctor Castro, a steadfast education proponent, alumnus and supporter of Northern Arizona University, died April 10, 2015, at the age of 98. He was Arizona’s 14th governor and a United States Ambassador to several countries in South America. Gov. Castro also was the namesake for the university’s Social and Behavioral Sciences building, named in 2008.

“Raúl Castro was a very kind individual who dedicated his life to public service and I was so impressed with his contributions to Arizona and our country,” said NAU President Rita Cheng. “I was honored to meet Mr. Castro and his wife in San Diego last fall shortly after I arrived at NAU. His belief in egalitarianism and civic contributions will live on, and we are proud to be part of this story of an extraordinary man.”

Even in his 90s, Gov. Castro continued to work with underrepresented and impoverished high school students, encouraging them to pursue a college degree and overcome obstacles.

An official obituary and announcement of public services are expected to be released soon. In lieu of flowers, Gov. Castro’s family has requested donations to the Raúl Castro Scholarship in Politics and International Affairs (#1680) and the Honorable Raúl H. Castro College of Education Fund (#5349), P.O. Box 4094, Flagstaff, AZ, 86011. For information, contact the NAU Foundation at (928) 523-2012.