| Frank Maurice Staggs, Sr.|
(South Texas educator, rancher,
|Born|| July 9, 1927 |
|Died|| December 20, 2022 (aged 95) |
|Political Party|| Republican
|Spouse|| Julieta Farias Staggs|
(married 1952-2015, her death)
|Religion|| Roman Catholic|
|Service/branch|| United States Army (sergeant)|
Texas National Guard (second lieutenant)
Staggs was the son of Frank Wilson Staggs (1895-1974), an oil field supervisor, and the former Gertrude Vivian Frizzell (1906-2001), a music teacher at Mirando City, near Laredo, Texas. Although his family lived in different towns in Texas over the years, he spent most of his formative years in Mirando City. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Texas A & I, Kingsville, now Texas A&M-Kingsville. In 1953, he procured a Master of Arts in Educational Administration and Speech Education from the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, Colorado. He enlisted in the United States Army and was a sergeant on a medical ship in the Pacific Ocean. Thereafter, he was a second lieutenant with the Texas National Guard until 1959.
On May 28, 1952, he wed the former Maria Julieta Farias (1925-2015), a native Laredoan, educator, and a descendant of the founder of Laredo, Don Tomas Sanchez.  and they had two sons, Frank "Pancho" Staggs, Jr., a retired civil litigation attorney in Houston and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and Raul Staggs, a casting director and actor in Studio City, California.
Staggs began his teaching career in 1950 in San Benito, Texas, at which he established a pilot English as a Second Language program. He returned to Mirando City in 1951 to teach multiple subjects and as a basketball and football coach. In 1953, Frank moved his family to Laredo, where he joined the faculty at the newly-opened Lamar Junior High as a Speech and History teacher. He was promoted to assistant principal in 1956. Four years later, he was named the first principal of the new Milton Elementary School. In 1964, he became the principal of Lamar Junior High School, a position that he held until 1972. In 1966, he spearheaded "Special Opportunity" classes, the first program designed to help overage elementary students to advance to high school in a single year. The program was renamed Coordinated Vocational Academic Education and received statewide recognition for preventing more than eight hundred students from dropping out of high school. In 1972, he was named director of Secondary Education for the Laredo Independent School Board, a post from which he retired in 1980. In 1998, Staggs was elected to the Laredo ISD School Board, on which he served until 2002. In June, 2013, the new library at the rebuilt Lamar Middle School was named in his honor.
A true "Renaissance man," he rarely had fewer than two jobs at a time throughout his life. For instance, while he as a classroom teacher in the early 1950s, he was a "play by play" football announcer for KVOZ Radio. He also worked part time at KGNS-TV, the NBC affiliate in Laredo as a sports and weather announcer. He hosted the "Ranger Bob Show." for sixteen years, he was a member of the Southwest Basketball Association, in which capacity he referred basketball for more than fifteen years. He sold life and health insurance part-time until his retirement from the LISD, after which he took on the insurance business full-time with partner Ed Leonard. For years, he ran the De La Garza Family Ranch, as well as his own Staggs family ranching interests.
Long involved in community volunteerism, civic duty, and philanthropy, he was affiliated with such organizations as the Lion's Club, the Community Chest, and United Way. He was active with the Washington's Birthday Celebration Association in Laredo and served as president of the organization in 1984. He and his wife portrayed George and Martha Washington for the 1985 celebration. He served three and a half years on the Laredo Water and Sewer Board. An active Republican in a heavily Democrat county, Staggs was one of the very few members of the minority party to serve in Laredo or Webb County offices although his time on the LISD was nonpartisan. He was also president of the Webb County Taxpayers' League.
Staggs and his wife were longtime supporters of the Blessed Sacrament Elementary School, a private Roman Catholic institution in Laredo. They were generous donors for the building of the Blessed Sacrament cafeteria/multi-purpose facility. In 2018, the Texas Academy of International and STEM Studies at Texas A&M International University in Laredo was renamed the Julieta and Frank Staggs Academy of International and STEM Studies. In 2019, he established the Frank & Julieta Staggs Scholarship Endowment to encourage first-generation students from select South Texas counties to pursue a degree in Arts and Sciences at his alma mater, Texas A&M- Kingsville, and a career in teaching upon graduation. Two months before his death, TAMIU presented Staggs with the "Innovator Award" for his contribution to education in Laredo
"My folks raised me, first of all, not to judge people by their color or their religion," Staggs told the Laredo Morning Times on the occasion of his ninetieth birthday. "What type of a person they are, that's what you judge, and do the right thing. That's always been my guide."
Staggs died in Laredo at the age of ninety-five. His funeral was held on December 23. He was cremated.
- Local education leader Frank Staggs Sr. dies at age of 95 (sfgate.com), accessed December 26, 2022.
- Frank Wilson Staggs (1895-1974) - Find a Grave Memorial, accessed December 26, 2022.
- Frank Staggs, Sr. | Obituary | Laredo Morning Times (lmtonline.com), accessed December 26, 2022.
- Maria Julieta Farias Staggs Obituary 2015 - Hillside Funeral & Cremations, accessed December 26, 2022.
- Frank Staggs, Namesake of TAMIU’s Staggs Academy of International and STEM Studies, Dies, accessed December 26, 2022.