LATINO COALITION CONGRATULATES MAYOR JULIÁN CASTRO, PRESIDENT’S NOMINEE TO LEAD THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT

The National Hispanic Leadership Agenda (NHLA) a coalition of the nation’s 37 preeminent national Latino organizations, is pleased that President Barack Obama officially nominated San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro today to serve as the nation’s next Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Castro will fill the vacancy created by the transition of Shaun Donovan, the current HUD Secretary, who the President also nominated today to serve as Director of the Office of Management and Budget.

As a three-term mayor of America’s seventh largest city, San Antonio, Texas, Mayor Castro is armed with the experience of leading urban-core revitalization, economic growth, and education reform. He is a natural fit to lead a department that is central to serving all Americans with a variety of housing needs — by ensuring access to fair mortgages; helping in community development efforts following natural disasters; combating homelessness, especially for veterans; and a host of other issues.
Castro’s nomination is especially significant for the Latino community. Once confirmed by the U.S. Senate, he would join Labor Secretary Thomas Perez and Small Business Administration Administrator Contreras-Sweet as the third Latino to assume a Cabinet-level post in the President’s second-term. He is a well-respected public servant and living example of the American Dream, as the President noted in today’s ceremony when he said, “Julián ha vivido el Sueño Americano.”
Following are statements of support NHLA’s leaders released in response to today’s White House announcement:
“I am confident Mayor Castro will bring a wealth of knowledge to this position. In this new role, he will undoubtedly help HUD to continue to revitalize our housing market, help those who are financially prepared to own and keep their homes, and support those seeking affordable housing,” Hector Sanchez, NHLA chair and executive director of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA). “Home ownership is crucial to wealth building and to achieving the American Dream. I urge Senators to recognize Mayor Castro as an ideal nominee and to quickly confirm him so he can get to work serving the American people as Secretary of HUD.”
“We applaud President Obama for nominating San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro to serve as the nation’s next Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and third Latino cabinet member,” stated Arturo Vargas, National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund Executive Director.  “A third-term mayor of the nation’s seventh largest city and rising star within the nation’s deep bench of talented Latino elected officials on both sides of the aisle, we know Mayor Castro would bring bold leadership and a wealth of economic expansion and community development experience to this critical position.”
“AVANCE commends President Obama on his nomination of San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development,” said Rick Noriega, President and CEO of AVANCE. “Mayor Castro, a longtime champion and friend of AVANCE, has a proven track record of creating and supporting meaningful social policy initiatives. We congratulate him and look forward to working with him in his new leadership role.”
“Mayor Julian Castro will be a game-changing addition to the President’s second-term cabinet as he brings a well-informed perspective from the nation’s second most populous state, with a significant and growing Latino population, and brings experience in accomplishing progressive change in a challenging political environment,” stated Thomas A. Saenz, President and General Counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF). “We look forward to a swift and bipartisan confirmation for the next HUD Secretary.”
“Julian Castro has demonstrated exceptional leadership as mayor of the nation’s seventh most populated city, particularly in his work to help revitalize the city’s urban core.  We are urging a swift Senate confirmation process so that we can continue to get back to the work of helping to alleviate the impact of the housing crisis on American homeowners,” said Janet Murguia, President and CEO of the National Council of la Raza (NCLR).
“HACU commends President Obama on the nomination of San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro as Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Mayor Castro will bring to the position the experience and vision of an energetic mayor of the nation’s seventh largest city, a leader fully engaged with the issues facing those most in need of the services of HUD,” said Antonio R. Flores, President of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU). “As an education association, HACU notes Mayor Castro’s strong support of education throughout his tenure at City Hall. He is eminently qualified for this position and we urge his speedy confirmation to this important post.”
“The effects of the housing market’s collapse devastated all Americans, especially Latinos. As the housing market rebounds, the Department of Housing and Urban Development will need a strong leader to keep families in their homes and turn their communities around,” said José Calderón, President of the Hispanic Federation. “I am confident that San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro will guide HUD through its next chapter and ensure that home ownership continues to be within reach for all. I wholeheartedly support his nomination and urge the Senate to move swiftly.”
“Mayor Castro is absolutely the right pick for the position of HUD Secretary and we commend President Obama for this nomination.  As Mayor of San Antonio, he has already distinguished himself with great achievements for San Antonio on economic and development issues that are not only national, but also international in scope,” said said Zuraya Tapia, Director of the Mexican American Leadership Initiative of the U.S.-Mexico Foundation. “His experience leading a city that is an international hub of business, as well as a rapidly growing one that has successfully balanced issues of development, fair access to housing and sustainable growth, make him the right leader to work with all American cities on these issues.  We sincerely hope that the U.S. Senate proceeds to a speedy confirmation of eminently qualified Mayor Julian Castro as the new United States HUD Secretary.”
“President Obama’s nomination of Julian Castro is historic, one that would have made the department’s founder – Lyndon B. Johnson – very proud,” said Javier Palomarez, United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) President and CEO. “In the nine years Julian Castro’s held office in San Antonio, nobody has done more than this young, visionary leader to address his city’s housing needs. Through a nearly half-billion dollar investment in housing projects, Mayor Castro has enriched San Antonio’s communities, incentivized small businesses, created well-paying jobs in construction and manufacturing, and provided shelter to those most vulnerable. It’s time to bring Mayor Castro to Washington, where he will produce the same results for the American people.  We encourage the President and Senate to confirm Castro as the next Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. Mayor Castro is not only an exemplary leader within the Hispanic community, but by all measures, a well-suited candidate to lead the department. He’s spent his time in office delivering for the people of San Antonio, its local businesses, and the communities they serve. With great consistency, Mayor Castro has set aside political partisanship in the name of good policy decision making – we hope his confirmation process will proceed with that same collaborative spirit.”
“We are thrilled to learn San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro has been officially nominated to lead the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and urge swift confirmation in the Senate,” said Dr. Yanira Cruz, National Hispanic Council on Aging (NHCOA) President and CEO. “Given his impeccable resume, fresh perspective, and warm energy, we are confident he will thrive in this new role and look forward to working with him on housing issues, especially as they relate to multigenerational poverty and providing adequate, affordable housing for diverse older Americans.”
“Access to quality affordable housing is a crucial component for the well-being of families and communities,” stated Patti Tototzintle, CEO of Casa de Esperanza. “Mayor Julian Castro is an excellent choice to lead HUD, with the expertise, leadership, and vision to move our nation forward in addressing these critical needs, and we call on the Senate to move forward swiftly with his confirmation.”
“The National Association of Hispanic Publications fully supports President Obama’s nomination of Julian Castro to be the next Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.” said Eddie Escobedo Jr., President of the National Association of Hispanic Publications.
“NHCSL urges Congress to move forward in confirming President Barack Obama’s recent nomination of Mayor Julián Castro,” said Senate President Eduardo Bhatia (PR), National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators (NHCSL) President. “I am pleased to see that the President continues to name key Latinos to Cabinet positions.  NHCSL fully supports Mayor Castro’s nomination; it is our hope that a smooth confirmation is reached in Congress.”
“SVREP applauds San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro’s nomination and stands ready to work with HUD Secretary Nominee Castro in his important role to energize urban communities across America, particularly Latino neighborhoods,” said Lydia Camarillo, Southwest Voter Education Project (SVREP) Vice President. “Mayor Castro has the intellect, academic credentials, community support and experience to serve as an excellent cabinet member of the Obama Administration. Mayor Castro will change the face of urban America.”