Reynaldo Leaños Jr. | Texas Public Radio

Reynaldo Leaños Jr.

Border and Immigration Reporter

Reynaldo Leanos Jr. covers immigration and the U.S.-Mexico border for Texas Public Radio.

Prior to joining Texas Public Radio, Reynaldo was a freelance journalist in the Rio Grande Valley of south Texas and in New York City. His work has appeared in Public Radio International’s The World and Global Nation, NBC News, NPR’s Latino USA, KUT’s Texas Standard and KUT.

He has an undergraduate degree from Texas State University, where he studied journalism and international studies. Leanos also has a master’s degree from the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY, where he specialized in international reporting.

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Reynaldo Leanos / Texas Public Radio

Thousands gathered in Brownsville on Saturday to celebrate Charro Days, a multi-day annual event that commemorated the relationship between the border city and Matamoros, its sister city in Mexico.

Verónica G. Cárdenas for Texas Public Radio

The future of the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas, has been uncertain ever since President Trump took office.

Drag queens from throughout Texas' Rio Grande Valley gathered last weekend in Brownsville to protest further construction of the border wall and bring attention to LGBTQ migrants who have been detained or are seeking asylum.

In a public park, a performer who goes by Beatrix Lestrange did not have to struggle to catch the attention of protesters gathered for the No Border Wall Protest Drag Show. Lestrange, whose real name is Jose Colon-Uvalles, wore a multicolored dress, a red wig, black pumps and a choker with studs.

Reynaldo Lenaos Jr. / Texas Public Radio

Beatrix Lestrange stood before a crowd of protestors near in a Brownsville park, ready to fire them up and ignite this demonstration against the border wall project. Catching their attention was not a problem. Lestrange wore a multicolored dress, a red wig, black pumps and a choker with studs.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, flikr photographer Donna Burton / http://bit.ly/2Bxurr1

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has confirmed a 45-year-old Mexican national died Monday morning while in their custody.

Veronica G. Cardenas / Texas Public Radio

Update: Nayda Alvarez recently joined a lawsuit filed by Valley residents against the Trump administration in the U.S. Court for the District of Columbia. It claims the president has crossed the limits of his authority.

President Trump's emergency declaration will potentially free up over billions of dollars in funding for border barriers throughout the U.S., including in the Rio Grande Valley. Residents there have strong views about the barrier, both pro and con.

Updated at 5:07 p.m. ET

President Trump's emergency declaration will potentially free up over $6 billion to build hundreds more miles of barriers along the Southern border. One of the places prioritized for construction is the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, where the majority of illegal crossings now occur. Residents there have strong views about the barrier, both pro and con.

Reynaldo Leaños Jr. / Texas Public Radio

Congress will consider Thursday a $333 billion spending package that includes funding for border security and border wall construction in South Texas. The bipartisan package allocates more than $1.3 billion for the construction of border fencing in the Rio Grande Valley and protects some parts of the region.

Reynaldo Leanos Jr. / Texas Public Radio

Protesters gathered outside of U.S. Representative Henry Cuellar’s local office in Mission, Texas, on Wednesday to condemn his involvement in bipartisan negotiations over a deal that includes funding to enhance border in the Rio Grande Valley.

Reynaldo Leanos Jr./Texas Public Radio

Tuesday night, President Trump stands before a joint session of Congress, assesses the state of the union and likely makes another case for more than $5 billion in funding for a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. Trump has said he'd be willing to shut the government down again if the funding doesn't materialize. 

But money has already been allocated for some border wall projects, including a 6-mile stretch of wall in South Texas' Rio Grande Valley.

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