News Release

32nd Annual Capital Awards Recognizes Hispanic Trailblazers, Delivers Message of Political Empowerment and Resiliency

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi delivered keynote remarks

March 27, 2019

Washington, DC—Last evening, UnidosUS, the nation’s largest Latino civil rights and advocacy organization (formerly NCLR), celebrated its prestigious annual Capital Awards. The event recognizes bipartisan leaders who have championed policies and legislation to empower and strengthen the Latino community. Among the evening’s honorees were Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA 40th District); Al Cardenas, Former Chairman of the American Conservative Union and current Senior Partner at Squire Patton Boggs and Monica Ramirez, Founder and President of Justice for Migrant Women and the co-founder of Alianza Nacional de Campesinas.

“We are incredibly grateful for the leadership of our trail blazing honorees this evening who have championed causes critical to our community like healthcare, jobs, quality education, and immigration reform, among so many others. Whether it’s working on policies to improve the lives of Latinos, bucking political expediency in favor of standing up for what’s right, or working hand-in-hand with our community to organize and empower a new generation of advocates, tonight’s award recipients have had an indelible impact on helping to improve the lives of our Hispanic American community,” said UnidosUS President and CEO Janet Murguía. 

The evening award ceremony began with a keynote address by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who addressed the capacity crowd at the National Building Museum:

“This evening, we mark more than 50 years of extraordinary progress driven by UnidosUS – which stands as a beacon of opportunity and pillar of prosperity in our nation. You have used your “voice and action” to empower millions of Latinos to pursue their American Dream, and in doing so, you have strengthened the state of all Americans.”

The Capital Awards gala capped a three-day gathering of advocates from across the country who participated in trainings and met with members of Congress on Capitol Hill as part of the 2019 UnidosUS Changemakers Summit. Earlier in the day during the Summit, UnidosUS presented its policy agenda for the 116th Congress, which documents how harmful policies and regulations issued under the Trump administration threaten to reverse the progress of the past decade and widen inequities. The policy agenda calls for quality, affordable healthcare, schools that provide an equitable educational experience, greater pathways to economic security, and comprehensive immigration reform.

During the awards ceremony, Janet Murguía carried that message of Latino where she addressed Latino power and resiliency.

“I take great pride in our community’s response to these challenges. We have fought back. We have used truth to counter falsehood, and compassion to counter hate. We have shared our stories to show the face of those impacted by the president’s policies. And we have woken a strong spirit in our community to capture our voice and more importantly…our vote," concluded Murguía.  

UnidosUS, previously known as NCLR (National Council of La Raza), is the nation’s largest Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization. Through its unique combination of expert research, advocacy, programs, and an Affiliate Network of nearly 300 community-based organizations across the United States and Puerto Rico, UnidosUS simultaneously challenges the social, economic, and political barriers that affect Latinos at the national and local levels. For almost 50 years, UnidosUS has united communities and different groups seeking common ground through collaboration, and that share a desire to make our country stronger. For more information on UnidosUS, visit www.unidosus.org or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Contact:
Gabriela Gomez
ggomez@unidosus.org
(202) 776-1732