056: Creating the American Dream with Alberto Altamirano

About Beto:

Beto has a deeply personal foundation for his interest in public policy, which has led him to work at the Texas House of Representatives, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and the U.S. Senate.

In 2015 Beto co-founded Cityflag, driven by his passion for technology, urban development and civic engagement. So what is CityFlag? It’s the first social network for 311 services, which allows you to report infrastructure issues such as potholes, outages and vandalism while building a more inclusive local government. Beto was recently recognized by Forbes as a 2018 “30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneur” for his social impact as a technology entrepreneur.


Places to Find Beto:

On Twitter @betoaltamirano

On Instagram @betoaltamirano


Cityflag on IG, on Twitter, and on Facebook


Show Notes:

2:35 minute: Overview of background, and the mindset around money and success that was instilled in you as a child?

  • Bi-cultural setting in the border town of Mission, TX.
  • Best of both worlds.  
  • Opportunity to have an impact in the smaller places, in an immediate and lasting way.
  • Started his first business at 18, a magazine highlighting artists in South Texas.
  • Embracing where you are from, wherever it is.

7:15 minute: Curious about the magazine, was this entrepreneurial drive born in to you or how did it all start?

  • What is the ecosystem that nurtures an entrepreneur.
  • Watching his parents encouraged him and helped teach him.

10:00 minute: Could you tell the story of what happened with your Father when you were 18 that inspired your drive to work in public policy?

  • His father was deported when he was 18. Told him to still believe in the American Dream.
  • Saw how public policy affected him and his family and that made him want to have an impact on it.

14:45 minute: What does that American Dream mean to you, and how did that advice from your Dad impact you over the years that followed?

  • A person behind the numbers you see. Numbers mean something.
  • His parent’s journey to the US was for a reason.
  • His advice meant that Beto was supposed to follow his own American Dream.

18:45 minute: What were some of the biggest challenges you faced in turning Cityflag from an idea to a reality?

  • You have to be comfortable in chaos when creating a startup.
  • Found a need while going door to door organizing communities in east Austin, TX.
  • Government doesn’t always have the mechanisms and the tools needed, and needs to adapt some things from the private sector.
  • Creation of CityFlag.

24:00 minute: You are your co-founders were friends first, I’m curious what it is about your relationship that has made this work, and would you recommend it to others or not?

  • You have to rely on folks that you trust.
  • You are only as strong and productive as those you surround yourself with.
  • Number one goal in a partnership is communication.

28:00 minute: What do you want your legacy to be?

  • It’s about knowing who you are and the role you play in your community.
  • Anything he does in his future he wants to have a social impact.
  • Feel comfortable with failure.

30:30 minute: Who has been the most impactful person in your journey to do well and achieve financial success?

  • Parents

40:00 minute: Who has been the most impactful person in your drive to do good and make an impact?

  • Teachers and mentors.

31:10 minute: When you are having a bad day what do you do to get yourself out of the funk? Do you have any regular personal development practices?

  • Surround yourself with positive people.
  • Meditation 10 to 20 minutes in the morning.
  • Spent time with Wife

32:00 minute: What book do you find yourself recommending to people most often?

  • The New Localism by Bruce Katz (Link)

32:30 minute: Best piece of advice related to happiness that you would give our listeners?

  • Whoever said you have to be happy every single second of the day is wrong. Happiness is knowing that throughout the day you are going to have discomfort, or feel vulnerable, and that you need to just keep moving forward.
  • Embrace the ups and downs, it is what makes us human.


Do Well & Do Good Challenge Nominee:





RAICES is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit agency that promotes justice by providing free and low-cost legal services to underserved immigrant children, families, and refugees.

Founded in 1986 as the Refugee Aid Project by community activists in South Texas, RAICES has grown to be the largest immigration legal services provider in Texas. With offices in Austin, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio, RAICES is a frontline organization in the roiling debate about immigration and immigrants in the world. As an organization that combines expertise developed from the daily practice of immigration law with a deep commitment to advocacy, RAICES is unique among immigration organizations. A diverse staff of 130 attorneys, legal assistants, and support staff provide consultations, direct legal services, representation, assistance and advocacy to communities in Texas and to clients after they leave the state. In 2017, RAICES staff closed 51,000 cases at no cost to the client. Our advocacy and commitment to change are driven by the clients and families we serve every day as our attorneys and legal assistants provide legal advocacy and representation in an immigration system that breaks apart families and leaves millions without pathways to legal status.


Where to Find Dorothy:

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About the author, Dorothy

Dorothy Illson is the founder of Needle's Eye Media, a full-service Facebook advertising agency. She's also the host of Do Well & Do Good, a podcast dedicated to telling the stories of people who have created financial success and leveraged it to increase their positive impact on the world.

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