Issue 2  June  2010

President Vivian Ortiz

Dear NACOPRW Members,
As a non-profit organization, we work with our membership to address issues that may come up and seek to find solutions that are fair and just. Our goal is to be an organization that maintains a high level of ethics and protocol, following to the best of our ability the bylaws by which we were founded.

NACOPRW has been partnering with 2010 Census on Local and National levels disseminating information to inform, educate and encourage the completion of the Census forms in order for Latinos to be counted.

We continue to work diligently with The National Hispanic Leadership Agenda (NHLA) and continue keeping our voices heard on Education, Employment, Healthcare Reform, and Immigration Issues.

We insist on making history!  NACOPRW is a National Ally of Vision 2020.  Drexel University College of Medicine -An American Conversation about Women and Leadership which was created by the University’s Institute for Women’s Health and Leadership, in conjunction with the National Constitution Center.   Vision 2020 is dedicated to creating a decade of action and education to promote women’s leadership and gender equality leading up to celebration of the 19th Amendment which created women’s suffrage in 2020.   The essence of the project is gathering together a group of the most committed and creative leaders and thinkers to assess where women are and where we need to be for full gender equality, to create an action agenda, and then to support and follow that agenda for the decade up to the centennial of women’s suffrage. For more information on this, please visit:

Congratulations to Carmen Delgado-Votaw on her selection as a Vision 2020 Visionary Delegate! This is a commitment of many years. We salute her on accepting this tremendous honor and on representing our NACOPRW community.  We are very excited for you and wish you much success.  We know she will represent NACOPRW to the fullest and in the most positive light. With her accomplished background and long record of fine achievements I am confident her contribution will be substantial. She is an inspiration to us.

This year part of our focus is on our fiscal structure and seeking diverse ways to fund our many and varied projects and activities. We are learning more about how non-profits engage in raising and using funds according to guidelines. NACOPRW, Inc is committed to using our membership funds for activities that will  have the active participation and approval of our members, focusing on those which benefit our community at large...

I am very excited that Alicia Baro is the Honorary Chair of our National Convention to be held on November 12-14, 2010 at the Hilton Miami Airport Hotel.  Alicia has dedicated her life to ensuring the rights of Hispanics, women and other minorities in political representation, education and employment.  She is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including Distinguished Service Awards from the 18th District of the Florida Congressional Delegation and the City of Miami.  Baro was featured in Julia’s Daughters, a book highlighting historical Dade County women.

As keynote speaker we have invited Sara Manzano-Diaz, Director of the Women’s Bureau of the U.S. Department of Labor.  NACOPRW supports Ms. Diaz on the issues her Bureau pursues, such as workforce development, green jobs for women, the Paycheck Fairness Act and the Healthy Families Act.

I look forward to our continued work in these areas and to using our National Convention as a place to renew our energies, refine our skills as NACOPRW leaders and members, and to focus on our organizational goals and activities for the next few years.

I wish you and your families a healthy and safe summer.     

Abrazos, Vivian Ortiz, President


Census Continues its Campaign to  Count Everyone

The Census continues its efforts to count everyone in our population sending  enumerators to households that did not send in their completed Census Forms.  Puerto Rico was lagging in completed forms while some states surpassed previous Census counts.   Maryland, for instance, filled in 78% of the  forms this year.                 

We urge anyone who has not completed the enumeration, to fill it out with a Census visitor. It is very important for the distribution of resources to be counted…

The Advocacy Corner 
NACOPRW has been very busy weighing in on a number of pieces of legislation that are important to us as Hispanics.  In concert with the NHLI, the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, it has supported the historic

Health Care Reform Act, H.R. 4872 which addresses key health priorities for the Latino community.  Signed into law by the President of the U.S., it includes affordability for lower and middle income families, Medicaid expansion to cover citizens and legal immigrants residing in the U.S. for 5 years or more and increases funding for P.R to take effect in 2011, allowing P.R. to be reimbursed upwards of 80% of Medicaid program costs., provides resources to end minority health disparities and takes some steps toward equity for the U.S. citizens of Puerto Rico as well as resources to establish a Health Benefits Exchange for the island.

RUM Parity.  An amendment to the Jobs Bill, included  a provision to ensure that future revenues to the U.S. territories from the “rum cover over” of excise taxes will be distributed on the basis of population rather than rum production.
This helps address the DIAGEO situation posed by the move of Captain Morgan Rum production from Puerto Rico to the Virgin Islands.  The Puerto Rican Coalition has taken the lead in helping Puerto Rico retain its rum excise tax allocation.
H.R, 2499 Puerto Rico Democracy Act Passes in the House

Although NACOPRW   did not take a position on this bill, it kept abreast of its development.  The bill, promoted by Rep. Pedro Pierluisi, Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico, and Rep. Jose Serrano (D-NY), was approved in the House of Representatives and provides for consultation of the people of Puerto Rico as to whether or not they want to retain the current status or want to pursue a different status.  Should the Commonwealth be defeated in a referendum, the Government of Puerto Rico could then proceed to have a vote with three options: independence, statehood or sovereignty in association with the U.S.

The other two Puerto Rican members of the U.S. Congress, Nydia Velazquez and Luis Gutierrez expressed themselves in opposition to the legislation.  LULAC  urged other Hispanic organizations to support the legislation. 

National Women’s History Museum Legislation Passes Out of Senate Committee

This legislation which NACOPRW supports was reported out of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee through a “technical correction” introduced by Senator Barbara Boxer to ensure that the Museum is covered by all environmental protections as provided by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (known as CERCLA).

Ratification of CEDAW Convention

NACOPRW has supported efforts to call attention to the fact that the United States has not yet ratified the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women.  A Letter Campaign to the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Senator John Kerry, and all  other Senators is underway to see that this important Treaty is put on the agenda of the Committee for ratification.  The President of the U.S. has signified that he will sign the Treaty if the Senate gives its advice and consent.  Civil rights organizations and women’s organizations have joined forces on this endeavor. 

Latino Organizations Launch Unite Arizona Campaign

NACOPRW joined a broad coalition of Latino organizations to combat Arizona’s anti-immigrant law SB 1070.  The campaign will support efforts to block the Arizona law in court and coordinate a targeted boycott of Arizona until the state repeals the legislation.

Puerto Rican organizations joining the boycott included ASPIRA, National Puerto Rican Coalition as well as sister organization MANA-a National Latina Organization.

National Museum of the American Latino Commission Holds Public Forums

The 23-member federal Commission hosted a Public Forum in Chicago on March 27 to seek input for the creation of the potential Museum of the American Latino.

Chapters should be alert about the Commission forums near their locations so that they can send representatives to the Forums and provide the requested input in Miami and New York..  Anaida Colon sent input to the California Forum.

Chapter News

Chicago Chapter

The Chicago Chapter celebrated International Women’s Day on March 8 by organizing an exhibition called “Tejiendo Nuestra Cultura” at the Institute of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture (IPRAC).  The large crowd that attended enjoyed viewing quilts, tapestries, lace and traditional dresses handmade by Puerto Rican women of different ages.  Deborah Lopez, Chapter President, welcomes the audience highlighting the mission of NACOPRW and its partnership with IPRAC.

The exhibition focused on Puerto Rican women as producers of cultural products and creators of social value.  As in other cultures, the needlework both acts upon gender and, in turn, serves to construct gender.  NACOPRW invited guests to reflect not only on the product but the process for making the needlework, including the conditions under which the pieces were made, by whom, and for what purpose.  Was the piece made as a gift to or for a special occasion?, to hold the memory of those who came before us, to supplement the family’s income or to teach the next generation practical skills to support the family?  When one sees needlework, how many memories tie you to your Puerto Rican roots?


DC Metro

The Chapter hosted a “Meet and Greet” reception to welcome to DC Sara Manzano-Diaz, the Director of the Women’s Bureau, who is a member of the Philadelphia Chapter of NACOPRW.  The well attended event was hosted by Chapter First Vice President, Xinomara Velazquez, and attracted new members to the Chapter.  The Chapter also hosted a “Mother’s Day luncheon” at Divino Lounge in Bethesda and to hear our “poet laureate”, Carmen Morales speak about Isabel La Catolica, Queen of Spain, who was the subject of her doctoral thesis at the University of Valladolid.



Wanda Gordils, President, reports that the Indiana Chapter sent representatives to the LULAC Women’s Conference held on March 6 at the Wicker Memorial Park Social Center.  There they promoted  membership in NACOPRW, their Scholarship Event and fostered collaboration with LULAC.

On April 25 the Chapter participated in the March of Dimes Walk in Lake County, starting point Highland High School.



The Chapter hosted the Meeting of the National Board of Directors at the Radisson-Warwick on February 19-21 in Philadelphia.  The meeting featured a PECO Energy Conservation Presentation by Lourdes Hernandez and Sam Melendez and a scrumptious lunch at PECO headquarters.

In March Chapter members attended a press conference with Philadelphia City Councilwoman Maria Quinones Sanchez regarding the details of the Puerto Rico Birth Certificate Changes.  Details about the birth certificates are included in another section of this newsletter.

The Chapter provided assistance to the Census Bureau by disseminating information and job opportunities available with them.

The Chapter continues its collaboration with ASPIRA in the Mentoring Workshop Series for young women from various schools.  The young women were part of the 10 Show NBC audience and talked to the hosts and toured the building with Chris Blackman, Vice President of News.

Poem to Sonia Sotomayor
by Iris Violeta Colon, Chapter Member and past National President

Es esta puertorriquena, Sonia Sotomayor, la que lanzo el nombre de Borinquen bella a los salones de justicia del milagro de America.

Mujer boricua, Sonia Sotomayor, 
Poseedora de la esencia de la Mujer Puertorriquena, duena del linaje de la Raza Bonrinquena.

La heredera de Cacicas, Espanolas y Africanas, Sonia Sotomayor, 
Hija de Borinquen, nacida en America en la ciudad de Nueva Cork, que posee la herencia Jibara del Talento Campesino

Sonia Sotomayor, el legado de este honor vivira por siempre en la historia como el latido del corazon de un siglo, de una raza


Southern California Chapter

SOCAL invites all to their website at where information about SOCAL abounds and applications for membership are available.

The web site has data on the founding of the chapter and its goals, the members and founders, its history and accomplishments as well as events, awards, comitteés, and photos.  Do visit them.


Puerto Rico Birth Certificates Law 191 of 2009

To strengthen the issuance and usage of birth certificates and to combat fraud and protect the identity and credit of people born in Puerto Rico, the legislature enacted Law 191 that went into effect Jan. 1, 2010.

Much confusion exists about the law and its provisions which you can clarify by visiting: 
Demografico/Pages/Requisitos parasolicituddeNacimiento.aspx or

To summarize:
To obtain a new certificate, you need to fill out and send  the Birth Certificate Application by Mail Form; send photocopies of identification with a photo (license or passport not voided); send a $5  in a giro postal or sellos de rentas internas (no checks or cash) ($4 for additional copies each); send an envelope already addressed to you.

Mail the request to: Registro Demografico, P.O. Box 11854, San Juan, P.R. 00910 or by Express mail send to Calle Quisqueya 171, Hato Rey, P.R. 00917. 

For additional information, call 787-767-9120 exts. 2402. 2406 and 2415.


NACOPRW Board of Directors
Executive Committee

Vivian Ortiz,   National President
Deborah Lopez, First Vice President
Sylvia Morrisroe, Second Vice President
Evelyn Figueroa, Treasurer
Vilma Colom, Assistant Treasurer
Bequi Ortiz, Secretary
Edith Feliciano, Assistant Secretary



Deborah Lopez, President, Chicago
Evelyn Figueroa, Delegate,Chicago

Wanda Gordils, President, Indiana
Isabel Mendez, Delegate, Indiana

Lucy del Valle, President, Miami
Gladys Colon, Delegate, Miami
Carmen Monroe, Delegate, Miami

Vilma Colom, President, Northern Illinois
Mariaelisa Laracuente, Delegate, Northern Illinois
Katherine Ast, Delegate,Northern Illinois

Maria Teresa Centeno,President,NY Manhattan

Vivian Ortiz, President, Philadelphia
Karensa Figuera, Delegate, Philadelphia
Magna Diaz, Delegate, Philadelphia

Darma Paden, President, Socal
Annie Lugo, Delegate, SoCal

Anna M. Rosario, President, D.C. Metro
Vilma Rosario, Delegate, D.C. Metro
Carmen Delgado Votaw,  Delegate, D.C. Metro

Sonia Collazo, President, Tampa
Ebony Tollinchi-Moore, Delegate, Tampa


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