NCLR ELECTS NEW BOARD CHAIR AND WELCOMES FOUR NEW MEMBERS TO BOARD OF DIRECTORS




June 16 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 16, 2009

Contact:
Sherria Cotton
(202) 785-1670

Washington, DC—NCLR (National Council of La Raza), the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States, today announced that Daniel R. Ortega, Jr., a partner at the law offices of Roush, McCracken, Guerrero, Miller and Ortega, has been elected Chair of the NCLR Board of Directors. Mr. Ortega succeeds Andrea Bazán, President of Triangle Community Foundation, a charitable foundation in Durham, North Carolina.

“We are excited to welcome Daniel Ortega as the new Chair of NCLR’s Board of Directors,” said Janet Murguía, NCLR President and CEO. “A respected attorney and longtime community leader, Danny brings a wealth of experience and expertise to his new role. He has earned the trust of the entire Board through his consistent, steady leadership and his unique ability to resolve issues in a timely fashion while ensuring that all perspectives are heard.”

The firm of Roush, McCracken, Guerrero, Miller and Ortega, based in Phoenix, Arizona, focuses on serious personal injury, wrongful death, and professional malpractice cases. Mr. Ortega previously headed his own firm and also worked with Community Legal Services. He is a member of the Arizona State Bar, American Trial Lawyers Association, American Bar Association, Maricopa County Bar Association, and Los Abogados Hispanic Bar Association. As a part of his pro bono practice, he has participated in and litigated a host of civil rights cases, voting rights cases, and employment law cases.

Mr. Ortega has served on the NCLR Board of Directors since 2003. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the National Farm Workers Service Center, Los Abogados Hispanic Bar Association, and the Stewardship Board for The Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix. He is active in the Phoenix business and civics community with a special focus on educational reform, political empowerment, and the protection of human rights. Mr. Ortega’s contributions have been recognized with many awards, including the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Professional of the Year, the Chicanos Por La Causa Community Service Award, and the Anti-Defamation League Leader of Distinction Award. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Arizona State University and a juris doctorate from the university’s College of Law.

“I am honored to serve as Chair of the NCLR Board and look forward to working with my fellow Board members, the Affiliate Network, and NCLR staff on the critical issues that the Latino community faces,” said Mr. Ortega. “NCLR is an American institution whose leadership has historically responded to the social and economic challenges faced by the Latino community through initiatives and advocacy. NCLR will continue its efforts to assist and empower the Latino community to achieve the American Dream and, as Chair of the Board, I am ready to serve and add my contribution to those efforts.”

“Daniel Ortega knows our community,” Murguía added. “He understands that Latinos want the same things as other Americans—financial security, access to quality health care, and a good education for the next generation. And he also understands how NCLR and its nearly 300 Affiliates can help the nation’s 47 million Hispanics achieve their goals. We’re extremely lucky to have him at the helm of our Board at this critical time for our country, our community, and our organization.”

NCLR’s Board is a 26-member body composed of elected officials and representatives of community-based organizations, the corporate sector, and academia. Board members reflect the diversity of Hispanic nationality groups and the geographic distribution of the Hispanic population. By mandate, the Board must include equal representation of men and women.

NCLR also named four new members at its June 2009 Board of Directors meeting in Chicago: Fred R. Fernandez, President of the Fred R. Fernandez and Irma R. Rodriguez Foundation, Inc., Alpharetta, GA; Nilda Ruiz, President and CEO of Asociación Puertorriqueños en Marcha (APM), Philadelphia, PA; Tony Salazar, President of West Coast Operations, McCormack Baron, Salazar, Los Angeles, CA; and Renata Soto, Executive Director of Conexión Américas, Nashville, TN.

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