Latino Museum Bill Letter to House and Senate Leadership
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On December 14th, 2020 the letter below was submitted to Congressional Leadership with over 140 influential signatories to encourage the passage of the National Museum of the American Latino Act. If you are interested in adding your name to this growing list, please sign-up here.
Dear Leader McConnell, Senator Schumer, Speaker Pelosi, and Representative McCarthy:
We write you today in response to the actions that took place on the Senate floor this past Thursday evening. On behalf of our organizations, our community, our families and future generations, that will one day be inspired by the countless stories exhibited in a Smithsonian National American Latino Museum, we urge you to work together to ensure that the National Museum of the American Latino Act (H.R.2420) is included in a year-end omnibus so that we can finally begin the work of creating a home for this long sought museum.
We are incredibly disappointed by Senator Mike Lee’s decision to block a bill that has such strong bipartisan support. As you know, our bill passed the House of Representatives by unanimous consent with more than 290 bipartisan cosponsors this summer; and has support from 46 cosponsors from both parties in the Senate. Additionally, on December 3, the Senate Rules Committee voted unanimously to advance the bill after holding a hearing on the initiative on November 17.
This bill has enjoyed strong bipartisan and bicameral support for years, led by Senators Bob Menendez and John Cornyn, and Representatives Jose Serrano, Tony Cardenas and Will Hurd. We are inspired by the energy and unity that this legislation has brought and are confident that all of those that have come together to drive this campaign forward would not want us, or Congress, to give up now. Since 1994, the Latinx community has been working and waiting to have its story told on the National Mall, and we must not wait longer if we can address this now. Throughout history, our community has fought, served and contributed to the founding, defending, growth and strength of the nation. It has endured, fortified, and overcome countless obstacles. Latinos have made our country what it is today and we urge you, our Congressional leaders, to commit to approving this bill before the end of this legislative session and make this museum a reality.
We thank you in advance for your leadership and we stand ready to support this historic endeavor from the bill’s ultimate authorization to the work required to open those doors on America’s front lawn.
Please do not hesitate to reach out to any one of us if I can be of further assistance.
Raul “Danny” Vargas Board Chair Friends of the American Latino Museum
Estuardo V. Rodriguez President & CEO Friends of the American Latino Museum
Lili Gil Valetta, FRIENDS Vice Chair, CEO & Co-Founder of Cien +
Luis Cancel, FRIENDS Secretary, Executive Director, Venezuelan American Endowment for the Arts
Jon Munoz, FRIENDS Treasurer
Antonio Argibay, Managing PrincipalMeridian Design Associates
Ruben Garcia, Co-Head of Cultural Business Strategy Group, Creative Artists Agency
Maija García, Director of Professional Training, Guthrie Theater
Lorraine García-Nakata, Consultant and Cultural Specialist
Martha Gonzalez, A concerned citizen
Lucy Guzman, NAHREP
David Hamond, Managing Member, Qi Advisors Group, LLC
Amy Hinojosa, President and CEO, MANA, A National Latina Organization
Margaret Hoover, PBS’ Firing Line with Margaret Hoover
Monica Jaramillo, LABEL The Agency
Reynold Lambert, President, Hispanic Bar Association of New Jersey
John Leguizamo, Artist, Activist
Aida Levitan, President, ArtesMiami, Inc.
Noerena Limon, SVP of Public Policy and Industry Relations, National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals
Alyra, Liriano, Deputy Regional President, Hispanic National Bar Association
Jennifer Lucio Vargas, Founder, President and CEO, 305 Communications and Events
David Luna, Councilmember, City of Mesa
Mark Magaña, Founding President & CEO, GreenLatinos
Raymond Manzo, President, San Francisco La Raza Lawyers Association
Adriana Martínez, President, Adriana Martínez Group
Dania Matos, President Emerita, Brown University Latino Alumni Council
Christopher Maurer, Professor of Spanish, Boston University
Caitlin McDougall Schippers,Educator, DeWitt Public Schools
Benjamin Mejia, Deputy Regional President, Hispanic National Bar Association Region II
Dahlia Narvaez, Executive Pastry Chef
Jose Niño, El Niño Group
Adriana O’Hagan, Executive Assistant to AFT Executive Vice President
Joél-Léhi, Organista, Founder & CEO, Machitia Inc.
Sylvia Orozco, Executive Director, Mexic-Arte Museum
Jackie Ortiz, Community Member
Nydia Padilla-Rodriguez, Borinquen Dance Theatre, Inc.
Degnan Patrice, Executive Director, Queen Sofia Spanish Institute
Jose Perez, President & CEO, Hispanics In Energy
Carlos Perez, Owner, Galica, LLC
Jorge Plasencia, CEO, Republica Havas
Mishel Prada, Actor
Jaclyn Quiles-Nohar, Deputy Director, National Hispanic Bar Association Region II
S Quintanilla, Director, El Ballet Folklórico Estudiantil
Annette Ramos, Executive Director
Ruben Reyna, President, Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia
Maggie Rivas-Rodriguez, Professor, University of Texas at Austin
Rodolfo Rivera, CEO, Father Tracy Advocacy Center
Ivette Rodriguez, President, AEM, Co-Founder, LA Collab
Ivan Roman, Freelance journalist and writer, Washington, D.C.
Claudia Romo Edelman, Founder, We Are All Human
Carmen Ronan, Manager of Business Development and International Services, Molera Alvarez
Bobby Sanabria, Co-Artistic Director Bronx Music Heritage Center
Roberto Sanabria, Actor
Yadira Sanchez, Co-Executive Director and Poder Latinx
Aurora Sauceda, Latinos United, Community Coordinator
Dina Siegel Vann, Director of the Arthur and Rochelle Belfer Institute for Latino and Latin American Affairs, American Jewish Committee (AJC)
Benjamin Sigel, HNBA Region I President
Yasmean Tamoor, Assistant Corporation Counsel, New York City Law Department
YeseniaTimoteo Abarca, LULAC Utah
Jack Torres, Mayor, Town of Bernalillo, NM
Pedro Torres-Diaz, Principal, Jackson Lewis P.C.
Tina Trevino, Partner, Director Community Relations, Latin Business Today, LLC
Tami Tyree, Echoes of Our Ancestors African-American History and Song
Ana Valdez, Executive President, Latino Donor Collaborative
Henry Vargo, Instructor, El Ballet Folklorico Estudiantil
Miriam Vazquez, Eugenio María de Hostos Charter School
Christian Vera, Broadcaster
Angela Weimer, National Director of Human Resources & Administration
Laura Ybarra, Michigan United
Michel Zajur, Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
cc:Sen. John Cornyn (TX) Sen. Robert Menendez (NJ) Senate Rules Committee Chairman Roy Blunt (R-MO) Senate Rules Committee Ranking Member Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) House Administration Committee Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) House Administration Committee Ranking Member Rodney Davis (R-IL)