UC San Diego's Teddy Cruz wins $100,000 Vilcek Prize
John Wilkens, San Diego Union Tribune

Teddy CruzTeddy Cruz (Nelvin C. Cepeda / Union-Tribune)

UC San Diego professor Teddy Cruz, an architect noted for his cross-border projects, has won the annual Vilcek Prize, which honors the contributions of immigrants to American culture.

It comes with a cash prize of $100,000.

Born in Guatemala, Cruz came to California when he was 20 and was struck by the things that both unite and divide the communities of San Diego and Tijuana, according to the Vilcek Foundation, which awards the prize. He and design partner Fonna Forman, also a UC San Diego professor, have been working recently with local governments, schools, and non-profit groups to create community spaces for arts and educational programming along the border.

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