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PR Newswire

PA Gov. Rendell Commends Senate For Confirming Commonwealth Secretary Pedro A. Cortes

May 14, 2003
Copyright © 2003
PR Newswire. All rights reserved. 

HARRISBURG, Pa. - Pennsylvania Governor Edward G. Rendell today commended the state Senate for unanimously confirming Pedro A. Cortes of Harrisburg as Secretary of the Commonwealth.

Cortes, who was nominated April 2, is the first Hispanic confirmed to a cabinet position in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

"Pedro's unanimous confirmation in the Senate confirms that he is the most talented person for the job," Governor Rendell said. "I will count on his leadership greatly over the next four years as we continue to improve the way state government does its business."

Cortes said, "I am honored to serve as Secretary of the Commonwealth for Gov. Rendell, and I appreciate his confidence in me. I look forward to this high point of my career with optimism and enthusiasm."

The Department of State protects public health and safety through licensing nearly 1 million business, health and real-estate professionals; maintaining registration and financial records on thousands of charities soliciting contributions in Pennsylvania; overseeing the state's electoral process; sanctioning professional boxing, kick-boxing and wrestling in the state; and maintaining corporate filings.

Previously, Cortes was the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Governor's Advisory Commission on Latino Affairs. As Executive Director, he made recommendations to the Governor and the administration on policies, procedures and legislation that enhanced the status of the Latino community in Pennsylvania.

As the Governor's liaison to the Latino community, he ensured that state government was accessible, accountable and responsive to the needs of Latinos and that strategies and programs were developed to enhance the community's social and economic status.

During Cortes' tenure in public service, he also has served with the Pennsylvania State Civil Service Commission and the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare. He is actively involved in numerous volunteer efforts and work related committees.

A native of Puerto Rico, Cortes has lived in Harrisburg since 1990. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Massachusetts, a master's degree from Penn State University and a law degree from Penn State Dickinson School of Law. He also holds a certificate in Public Sector Human Resources Management from Penn State University. He is married to Lissette Lizardi-Cortes, and they have a daughter, Gabriela Paola. Pennsylvania Department of State

CONTACT: Abe Amoros of Pennsylvania Department of State, +1-717-783-1621

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