Teodoro Moscoso Mora
Moscoso being sworn in as Coordinator of the Alliance for Progress and Regional Administrator for Latin America for the USAID on November 14, 1961
|United States Ambassador to Venezuela|
May 23, 1961 – November 21, 1961
|President||John F. Kennedy|
|Preceded by||Edward J. Sparks|
|Succeeded by||C. Allen Stewart|
|Born||November 26, 1910|
|Died||June 15, 1992 (aged 81)|
San Juan, Puerto Rico
|Political party||Popular Democratic Party|
|Alma mater||University of the Sciences in Philadelphia|
University of Michigan
|Profession||businessman, diplomatic corps, politician|
Moscoso's parents were Teodoro Moscoso Rodriguez, the founder of "Farmacias Moscoso" (Moscoso Pharmacies), in Ponce, Puerto Rico, and Alejandrina Mora Fajardo, from the Balearic island of Majorca, Spain. Alejandrina was pregnant when she and her husband were visiting Barcelona, Spain. Moscoso Mora was born during their visit and soon afterward the Moscosos returned to Puerto Rico. Moscoso Rodriguez attended to his pharmacy, which was located in downtown Ponce.
The Moscosos sent their son to New York City where he obtained his early education. Afterward he moved to Ponce and graduated from Ponce High School. After graduation he attended the Philadelphia School of Pharmacy (now the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia) to follow in his father's profession. After three years, he transferred to the University of Michigan, where he graduated in 1932. Moscoso returned to Ponce and worked in his father's pharmacy. The pharmacies, an island-wide chain, operated from their founding in 1915 until 1995 when they were sold to Farmacias El Amal, another local chain. He married Gloria Sánchez Vilella.
Entry into civil service
Moscoso left the family business and helped win for the Ponce Housing Authority (PHA) an imperiled $2-million grant. In the midst of the Great Depression, the grant aided the construction of nearly 1,000 homes in Ponce. Moscoso's success caught the attention of various Puerto Rican government officials. In 1940, Moscoso joined the Popular Democratic Party after meeting Luis Muñoz Marín, and became instrumental in making Luis Muñoz Marín's vision of an industrialized Puerto Rico a reality.
In 1941, Rexford Guy Tugwell, Governor of Puerto Rico, and Luis Muñoz Marín, president of the Puerto Rican Senate, established a number of government-owned corporations. In 1942, Moscoso became Executive Director of the new agency in charge of Puerto Rico's economic development, the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Company.
Under Governor Muñoz Marín's administration, Moscoso led a project known as Operation Bootstrap. This administration realized that agriculture alone would not be able to provide employment for the burgeoning population, and sought to use the advantages of free access to the American market, plus a ready, inexpensive, and trained labor force, to rapidly industrialize the country. The country experienced rapid economic progress during the decades of 1950–1970. The ambitious project stimulated various industries through federal and local tax exemption as well as through government assistance, to invest in Puerto Rico. Moscoso succeeded in attracting worldwide capital investment to the Commonwealth; this, in turn, helped transform the island into a modern industrial society. The Economist later reported: "one century of economic development . . . achieved in a decade."
The following table shows Puerto Rico's change from agricultural to manufacturing society in terms of employment (extracted from Fernando Pico's Historia General de Puerto Rico).[full citation needed]
|Decade||Agriculture and fishing||Manufacture|
In May 1961, United States President John F. Kennedy named Moscoso ambassador to Venezuela. One month later Moscoso was kidnaped by leftist students and the car fire at the Central University of Venezuela. Before it was burned were taken from the vehicle a reckless diplomatic documents left unattended. Those documents, which contain a series of "recommendations" State Department to Venezuelan government were read on August 8, 1961, by Che Guevara, head of the Cuban delegation at Economic Conference of Punta del Este, Uruguay. On November 11 the president Romulo Betancourt ordered break diplomatic relations with Cuba. Earlier, the Mexican government had agreed to host the hundred Cuban refugees who were at the Venezuelan embassy in Havana, hoping to leave their country. In November Moscoso was named coordinator of Kennedy's Alliance for Progress and returned to Washington.
After the Kennedy assassination, Moscoso returned to Puerto Rico. In 1966, Moscoso headed the Commonwealth Oil Refining Co. ("CORCO"). From 1973 to 1976 Moscoso became again the head of "Fomento".
Teodoro Moscoso died on June 15, 1992.
A 2.25-kilometer bridge connecting the Hato Rey/Río Piedras sectors of San Juan, Puerto Rico with the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport bears the name of Teodoro Moscoso. The bridge, over the San José Lagoon, is the longest bridge over a body of water in Puerto Rico. In Ponce he is honored at the Illustrious Ponce Citizens Plaza in Tricentennial Park.
- ¿Qué pasó hoy? (vídeo). Rico Puerto Rico. Noticel. June 15, 2012. Retrieved June 28, 2012.
- Message Boards: Zaragoza – Mayaguez, PR: Moscoso. Ancestry.com. Retrieved June 28, 2012.
- Teodoro Moscoso. 123helpme!.com. Retrieved June 28, 2012.
- Cuando las compras se hacían en González Padín y Farmacias Moscoso. Primera Hora. San Juan, Puerto Rico. November 26, 2013. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
- Autopistas de Puerto Rico (2004). "Quienes Somos: Una Nueva Vía Hacia el Futuro". Archived from the original on April 30, 2007. Cite uses deprecated parameter
- "Commerce and Business". TravelPonce.com. Retrieved September 7, 2018. Italic or bold markup not allowed in:
- Dietz, J.L. (2003). Puerto Rico: Negotiating Development and Change. L. Rienner. ISBN 978-1-58826-147-2.
- Maldonado, A. W. (1997). Teodoro Moscoso and Puerto Rico's Operation Bootstrap. Gainesville: University Press of Florida. ISBN 978-0-8130-1501-9. OCLC 45730204.
- Sotomayor, A. (2016). The Sovereign Colony: Olympic Sport, National Identity, and International Politics in Puerto Rico. University of Nebraska Press. ISBN 978-0-8032-8538-5.
- Whalen, C.T. (2001). From Puerto Rico to Philadelphia: Puerto Rican Workers and Postwar Economies. From Puerto Rico to Philadelphia: Puerto Rican Workers and Postwar Economies. Temple University Press. ISBN 978-1-56639-836-7.
Edward J. Sparks
| United States Ambassador to Venezuela
May 23, 1961 – November 21, 1961
C. Allen Stewart