John Phillip Santos

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John Phillip Santos at the 2010 Texas Book Festival.

John Phillip Santos (born 1957) is a freelance filmmaker, producer, journalist, author and in 1979 became the first Mexican-American Rhodes Scholar.[1][2][3]

Early life[edit]

Santos was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas.[4] In 1997, Santos joined the Ford Foundation as an officer in the Media, Arts and Culture Program.[1][2]

He lived in New York City for twenty years, returning to San Antonio in May 2005.[2]


His articles have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, San Antonio Express-News, and the New York Times.[2] As an executive producer he has over forty broadcast documentaries on culture, religion, politics and spirituality for CBS News and PBS, some of which have been nominated for Emmys.[2] As a director he has been involved in program development for Thirteen/WNET in New York City.[2]

Santos was an Emmy nominee in 1988 for From the AIDS Experience: Part I, Our Spirits to Heal/ Part II, Our Humanity to Heal, and in 1985 for Exiles Who Never Leave Home.[5] He has an MA English Literature and Language from St. Catherine's College at Oxford University and a BA in Philosophy and Literature from the University of Notre Dame.[1][5]

Between August 7 and August 18, 2006, Texas Public Radio (KSTX 89.1 FM) broadcast Santos reading from his family memoir Places Left Unfinished at the Time of Creation.[6]


He has been awarded the Academy of American Poets' Prize at Notre Dame, the Oxford Prize for fiction,[1][4] and the Berlin Prize Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin.[2] His family memoir, Places Left Unfinished at the Time of Creation was a finalist for the National Book Award.[1][7] He was also a past member of the President's Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans.[8][9]


  • The Farthest Home is in an Empire of Fire
  • Places Left Unfinished at the Time of Creation
  • Songs Older Than Any Known Singer: Selected and New Poems, 1974–2006, with Arturo Madrid

Further reading[edit]

  • Art at Our Doorstep: San Antonio Writers and Artists featuring John Phillips Santos. Edited by Nan Cuba and Riley Robinson (Trinity University Press, 2008).


  1. ^ a b c d e Wing Press (accessed April 29, 2009)
  2. ^ a b c d e f g University of Texas (accessed April 29, 2009)
  3. ^ Hakim, page 251
  4. ^ a b Penguin bio (accessed April 29, 2009)
  5. ^ a b Watson Institute (accessed April 30, 2009
  6. ^ Texas Public Radio (accessed April 30, 2009)
  7. ^ NYTimes; Book Award Finalists Announced (accessed April 30, 2009)
  8. ^ Us Department of Education Archive (accessed April 30, 2009)
  9. ^ Creating the will, page 63


  • Hakim, Joy (2003). A History of the U. S.: All the People, 1945-2001 (3 ed.). Oxford University Press US. ISBN 0-19-515338-3. 
  • Creating the will a report to the President of the United States, the Secretary of Education, and the nation. DIANE Publishing. ISBN 1-4289-2609-7. 
  • John Phillip Santos Papers at the University of Texas at San Antonio Archives and Special Collections: [1]

External links[edit]

  • The University of Texas at San Antonio houses a collection of Santos' personal papers including research notebooks, edited manuscripts (drafts for publication), reviews, clippings, and audiovisual materials including video tapes and sound recordings. A small about of personal materials are present, including travel diaries, a large postcard collection, notebooks, family films made by Santos in high school, and early journals. Additionally, the collection includes artwork (drawings, sketches, and audio art pieces), copies of speeches and informal talks, and electronic media (computer files).