Press Release - Assemblyman Felix W. Ortiz
District Office

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Brooklyn, NY 11220
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The Assembly

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Legislative Office Bldg.
Albany, NY 12248
(518) 455-3821

June 24, 2005

Puerto Rico Native Felix Ortiz to Be Sworn In As President of the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators
Special swearing-in ceremony held with dignitaries at San Juan Capitol

San Juan, Puerto Rico - Today, New York State Assemblyman Felix Ortiz will be sworn in as the new president of the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators (NHCSL). Puerto Rico Senate President Kenneth McClintock Hernandez performed the swearing-in ceremony at the Capitol in San Juan. He will be representing over 300 elected Hispanic State legislators through out the United States, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Since its founding, the NHCSL’s primary mission has been to organize Hispanic state legislators who advocate on behalf of Hispanic communities across the United States.

Assemblyman Ortiz will succeed Texas State Senator Leticia Van de Putte who served as NHCSL president for two years. At the swearing-in ceremony, State Senator Van de Putte passed the ceremonial torch to Assemblyman Ortiz before several high-ranking political officials, dignitaries and state legislators from around the country.

Assemblyman Ortiz highlighted NHCSL’s current programs and initiatives such as the Healthy States Initiative and Closing the Achievement Gaps Initiative, which are helping Hispanic state legislators design policies that will improve the quality of life for Hispanics. In addition, Assemblyman Ortiz spoke about the issues that will be his priorities as NHCSL president including a stronger focus on increasing opportunities that will empower the Hispanic community through economic development, access to better healthcare and affordable housing, as well as eliminating the education disparities among Hispanic youth.

Assemblyman Ortiz was born and raised in La Playa de Salinas, Puerto Rico. In 1980 he became the first of his family to move to the United States and soon after became actively involved in community and political issues. He has served in various capacities throughout New York State politics and since his election to the New York State Assembly in 1994, Ortiz has worked tirelessly to improve the conditions in the district that he serves. He is well-known as the sponsor of New York’s law banning the use of cell-phone while driving and is recognized as a national leader in policy development to fight the childhood obesity epidemic. Assemblyman Ortiz remains committed to advocating for the youth of New York.

The National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators (NHCSL) is the premier national association of Hispanic state legislators working to design and implement policies and procedures that will improve the quality of life for Hispanics throughout the country. NHCSL was founded in 1989 as a nonpartisan, nonprofit 501 (c) 3 with the mission to be the most effective voice for the more than 300 Hispanic legislators. For more information visit the NHCSL web site or call 202-434-8070.