Incoming delegado Jesús “Chuni” Medeles Córdova aims to work toward making expatriates feel at home in “friendly” Ajijic, encouraging interaction and integration with the Mexican population.
“I hope foreigners will participate in our traditional festivities and projects to improve the community,” he said after his victory.
“I need to learn and practice to improve my English so we can communicate,” he confessed, nonetheless demonstrating a strong command of the language.
Medeles leaves behind a short but accomplished record as director at the Centro Cultural Ajijic, a post he has held since last October.
In his new job, he anticipates continuing his role as a leader in the promotion of the arts, related educational programs and the conservation of village traditions. At the same time, he is keen to tackle deficient public services, particularly revamping garbage collection and stamping out the litter plague on village streets.
Likewise, Medeles intends to promote sports activities and better health care services at Ajijic’s Centro de Salud. He has also pledged to develop solutions for traffic problems and support initiatives to boost tourism.
Although Medeles is well-known as a cultural activist and offspring from a long line of local musicians, few people are aware that he also a descendent of one of the town’s most illustrious political dynasties.
Medeles is the nephew of the late Alicia Medeles Romero, who made history in 1989 when she was named as the first and only woman to manage the Ajijic Delegacíón.
His great uncles Mariano Medeles Arriola and Ruben Romero Pérez held the post in the 1970s and 1990s respectively. Before that, another great uncle, Gabriel Romero Ibón, served three terms as delegado, while his brother Reginaldo dedicated nearly half a century of his life to various local government posts.
And going back to the era of the Mexican Revolution and Jalisco’s Cristera Rebellion, his great-grandfather Miguel Romero Ramos was the town’s administrator during three government periods.
In addition, his father Jesús Medeles Romero served as Chapala’s personnel manager under former mayor Raul Robles Puga (1992-1994) and was elected to a seat on the city council for the 2001-2003 administration of Alejandro Aguirre Curiel. Uncle Juan José Medeles Romero was in charge of public works in the Robles Puga government. And aunt Luz Medeles Romero was Chapala’s First Lady during husband Alberto Alcantar Beltran’s term as mayor (1998-2000).
Two of his ancestors are remembered as pillars of the Partido Acción Nacional (PAN) during its rise in Jalisco back in the 1930s.
Medeles replaces acting delegado Rafael Escamilla Ramos who chose not to enter the election fray following the tragic death of his teenage son José Antonio, who succumbed to acute leukemia just over a month ago.