Julian Castro on his legacy and goals at HUD

SAN ANTONIO -- On Tuesday, an interim San Antonio mayor will be elected, and Mayor Julian Castro will resign and walk out of City Hall -- the first mayor to ever do that.

Then, on Thursday, Castro will fly to Washington D.C. to begin his job as the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

Castro discussed his legacy, his future and if he's been in any kind of training program to take over HUD.

"Over these past couple of months, the HUD staff has been great about briefing me and getting ready for the job, so I feel like I'm prepared and ready to tackle a very important role in Washington," Castro said.

His office is nearly packed up; his home is not far behind.

"Erica and I have found an apartment," Castro said. "I'll be moving into our apartment this coming weekend, and Erica and Carina will be there in a couple of weeks, and we're going to keep our home here in San Antonio."

The Castro family is expecting a second child in December.

"Erica will likely be working after she has the baby," Castro said. "That's up to her, since she's a teacher, starting to work next school year."

And one of the things Castro is most excited about: joining his brother, Congressman Joaquin Castro, in the nation's capitol.

"One of the great things about being there is getting to see my brother a little more," Castro said.

After serving as mayor for five and a half years, Castro hopes his legacy is threefold.

"First is helping our young people get a great education so they can reach their dreams. Secondly, helping to ensure that we have more economic opportunities and good jobs in San Antonio, and third, that we've helped move the ball forward in improving the quality of life in San Antonio by revitalizing some of our older neighborhoods and sparking the decade of downtown."

As for his frustrations, Castro said, "For somebody who's been in a hurry for most of his life, it's been frustrating to see things move so slowly at times."

A councilman at 26, mayor at 34, now in President Barack Obama's Cabinet at the age of 39, what is next for this young man in a hurry?

He says he's open to possibilities, as talk swirls of him running for governor, or being selected a vice presidential running mate even.

When asked if he wanted to be President of the United States, Castro responded, "I've never woken up on any day of my life and said I want to be president or I'm going to be president. It's very flattering to be asked. Who wouldn't be flattered?" he asked, adding, "I'm sure people will continue to ask the question, but I don't believe that's ever going to happen."

Right now, Castro says he's focused on the job at hand, serving as HUD Secretary for the next two and a half years.

A formal swearing in ceremony will be held in mid-August, but he'll be sworn in privately on Monday and go to work.

"I have given a lot of thought as to what those priorities ought to be," Castro said. "Here in San Antonio, I've seen some of the great work that HUD has done, efforts like promise neighborhood, promise zone and creating housing opportunities and greater opportunities for people to lift themselves out of poverty and buy a home. Those are the things that strike at the heart of why I'm in public service, and along with a great team, I'm confident we'll do good work."

Castro says he's also confident he will eventually return to San Antonio, whether that is in two and a half years or 20.


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