Saturnino “Curly” Santa Cruz graduated from Pueblo High School in 1962. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Education in 1968 and Master’s Degree in Secondary Education in 1975 from the University of Arizona. An acclaimed educator in Tucson Unified School District for 40 years, including 39 years at his alma mater, Pueblo High School. Mr. Santa Cruz served with distinction as an award-winning teacher, coach and administrator.
Throughout his professional career in the field of education and sports, countless students have benefited from his extraordinary ability to develop meaningful relationships with students as an outstanding teacher, great mentor and role model. He has coached divisional and state championship teams in both football and track, and in the process has been the recipient of numerous prestigious awards and honors. In 2015, Santa Cruz was the recipient of the National LULAC Presidential Citation Educational Leadership Award, which is their highest national award. He was recognized for his years of outstanding contribution, service, and leadership within the educational community, especially as it relates to serving the youth of our community.
In 2012, he was inducted into the Pima County Sports Hall of Fame and in 2011; he was awarded the annual High School “Signature Coach” Award. In 1990, he was the recipient of the Tucson Conquistadores “Outstanding Achievement Award” and the NOSOTROS “Community Service Award”. He has won numerous “Teacher of the Year” awards and “Coach of the Year” honors. In 1988, he was named “Coach of the Year” by the Tucson Citizen and Arizona Daily Star for coaching the only season unbeaten Pueblo football team in the school’s history. For four years, he was named an Arizona All-Star Coach and in 1992 was voted as the Arizona All- Star Head Football Coach for the Arizona All-Star game.