Issue 1  March  2010

President Vivian Ortiz

Dear NACOPRW Members,
It is an honor for me to be part of an organization that is dedicated to serving the Hispanic community; an association promoting the civic and cultural participation of Puerto Rican and other Latina women in their economic, social and political life in the United States and Puerto Rico.

I want to thank so many NACOPRW members who have been so giving of their time and energy.  As the New Year proceeds we reflect on the past year; the challenges that help us grow, the triumphs for which we are grateful and the opportunity we have to plan for the future.

As the year ensues we know you are working on exciting and valuable activities for the local Puerto Rican and Latino communities in your region.   We are proud of the work you do and thank you for upholding our mission and vision and adhering to the bylaws that guide us. 
Make sure to start planning your attendance to support our national convention! Members will once again be able to sign up for Jewels to be posted in the program as a way to support the event. We also appreciate any other ways you can help us with planning.  Please say “presente” as we plan the event, and check out our website for more information:

I leave you with best wishes, hoping that you have some time to enjoy family and frends while you balance the many contributions you make to your local communities and to the country.
Les manda un caluroso saludo, 

U.S. Commission on the Status of 
Women Meets in March in New York

The future of the global women’s rights movement  may well hang on the discussions to be held on March 1 and 11 when the Gender Equality Architecture Reform Campaign (GEAR) will host public events slated to strengthen the institutional mechanisms that govern the advancement of women at the United Nations level.

The proposed merger of the actual mechanisms that foster women’s advancement (UNIFEM, INSTRAW, CSW) are spelled out in a proposed Resolution to merge these resources and have them led by a United Nations Deputy Secretary General.  Proponents are hopeful that the resolution will be adopted and announced during the meeting of the CSW.

The Non Governmental Organizations are sponsoring a Global Forum on February 27 and 28 to discuss the following topics: Advancing Women’s Rights (1975-2010), the state of the world’s patriarchy, climate change, violence against women, women’s health, issues and priorities to achieve women’s rights and the Millenium Development Goals in the regions with the hope of fulfilling the promise of gender equality, peace and development even in spite of the world’s economic crisis.

The Center for Women’s Global Leadership will sponsor a symposium at Hunter College in NY on March 6 to reflect on the past 20 years.

De Aquí y De Allá

The President’s Task Force on Puerto Rico on Puerto Rico held its first meeting on December 15 examining and reporting on Puerto Rico’s status but expanding its focus to include matters affecting its economic development.

The President’s Executive Order of October 30, 2009 calls for the Task Force to provide advice and recommendations to the President and the Congress on policies that promote job creation, education, health care, clean energy, and economic development.  Cecilia Munoz, White House Director of Intergovernmental Affairs, and former staff member of the National Council of La Raza, was appointed Co-Chair.  Associate Attorney General, Tom Perrelli, is the other Co-Chair, and there are 16 representatives of the Departments of Health and Human Services, Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, Education, Agriculture, Interior, Labor, Energy, Defense, Commerce, Treasury, State and Veterans Affairs, as well as the Environmental Protection Agency and the Council of Economic Advisors.  Latinos on the Task Force are Mercedes Marquez of Housing, Tammye Trevino of the Rural Housing Service, Gabriela Lemus of Labor, and Joe Garcia of Energy.

The Task Force decided to hold public hearings in Puerto Rico and on the mainland to seek public input.

NACOPRW and members of the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda are opposing DIAGEO’s proposed move of Captain Morgan Rum from Puerto Rico to the Virgin Islands.  The move will displace workers and their families in Puerto Rico, which has a very high unemployment rate, and give a 50% U.S. subsidy from our tax dollars to a British corporation

The Borinqueneers Stamp Campaign

A Campaign to ensure the U.S. Stamp Advisory Committee recognizes the need to honor minority veterans who served valiantly and proudly in the U.S. Armed Forces is collecting signatures to promote the issuance of a U.S. stamp commemorating the Borinqueneers, the brave Army Regiment from Puerto Rico. To sign the petition visit:

National Museum of the American Latino Commission Seeks Proposals

The 23-member federal Commission is seeking proposals from private firms and individuals that can assist in completing a report to Congress.  Chairman Henry R. Munoz III indicated they want to do a thorough analysis and report about the viability of creating a Museum of the American Latino.

Information on this can be accessed from the USA e-buy Internet site and Fed/BizOpps or contact Dennis Vazquez at the National Park Service, 202-208-7468.

Chapter News

DC Metro

The Chapter co-sponsored the Annual Legislative Briefing of the Montgomery County Commission of Women  which had as its keynote speaker, Lilly Ledbetter, the heroine that ensured equal pay for equal work was enshrined. In recent legislation passed by the U.S. Congress and signed by the President of the U.S.



The Chapter is hosting the Meeting of the National Board of Directors at the Radisson-Warwick on February 19-21 in Philadelphia.

On January 23 Grupo Fuego, a North Philadelphia dance group, honored Vivian Ortiz.  Fuego was created by Hector Serrano to mentor students through the arts.  Congratulations, Vivian.

On January 30 Taller Puertorriqueno, a community-based graphic arts workshop that provides safe facilities, creative outlets for youth and educational programs that underscore our rich Puerto Rican Heritage, hosted Iris Violeta Colon Torres’  book presentation.

In March the Chapter participated in “Latinas Unidas para la Cura” in collaboration with Susan G. Komen and the American Cancer Society.

Que es una Nacoprense?
Poem by Iris Violeta Colon

La Nacoprense es una India brava
Es una mujer puertorriqueña
Que a veces tiene la cabellera negra
Otras veces la tiene blanca
En muchas ocasiones la tiene rubia
Como el color dorado del sol de su patria
A veces es trigueña a veces es blanca
Las hay que son negras de caderas anchas
Su raza es altanera
Su nombre de mujer puertorriqueña
Adorna su garganta
De sup echo nace historia
Tiene el alma adornada en nácar
Sabe de amor y de penas
De gozo y de desdichas
Es como una niña que canta y arrulla
Sollioza y delira
Protesta, gime y grita
Cuando la pena la embarga
Es que la Nacoprense sabe secretos de nuestra vida y en los momentos penosos nos da su alma emotiva
Como las tiernas caricias de mi Borinquén querida.

Some Facts About Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico is the country with the most cars per square mile in the world:

148 vehicles per street mile and 4300 vehicles per square mile

The port of San Juan is the fourth busiest seaport in the Western Hemisphere

San Juan is the oldest city in U.S. territory (oldest than St. Augustine, Fl.) and was founded in 1508 by Juan Ponce de Leon.  The state of Florida was discovered by P.Rico’s first Governor, Ponce de Leon

There are about 1100 people per square mile, a higher ratio than within any of the 50 states.  P.Rico’s density is among the world’s highest—only Bangladesh, Barbados, South Korea, Taiwan, the Maldives and the city-states of Hong Kong and Singapore are more crowded

There are more Puerto Ricans living in the rest of the United States than in the island of P.R. itself

La Fortaleza in San Juan is the oldest executive mansion in the New World

Puerto Rico has one of the world’s highest productivity ratios

Walmart in Carolina broke the selling records of all Walmart stores

The highest grossing Borders book store in U.S. territory is in Plaza las Americas Mall

The busiest Toys ‘R” Us in the world is also at Plaza las Americas

The highest grossing Sears store in the world is in Puerto Rico

The largest JC Penney store in the world (4 stories) is located at Plaza las Americas Mall

The highest selling Kmart in the U.S. is in San Juan

The place in the world with more pharmaceutical companies per square mile is Puerto Rico

P.R, is the third country in the world with more physicians in proportion to its population

P,R, has the world’s  highest rates of alcohol consumption in the world; the legal drinking age is 18

86% of the rum drunk in the U.S. is from Puerto Rico

“Pina Colada” was “born” in P.R.

P.R. has more rivers per square mile than any other place in the world

The Camuy River in Puerto Rico is among the top three longest underground rivers in the world

It is estimated that there is more nickel in the mountains of P.R. than in the whole U.S., including Alaska and Hawaii

The world’s highest concentration of bioluminescent waters are in P.R.

The world’s biggest and largest radio telescope is in P.R.

Puerto Rico has the only rain forest in the U.S.:  el Yunque

The official coffee of the Vatican is coffee grown and brewed in P.R.

Puerto Rico has won the Miss Universe pageant a record five times

Puerto Rico ranks sixth in the world on the number of college graduates

Telemundo, the 2nd largest Spanish language television station in the U.S. was founded in P.R.

The second radio station to be inaugurated in the U.S. was in P.R.

The longest running TV program was from P.R.

The first Emmy went to Puerto Rican Jose Ferrer; he also got the Academy award for the same role; Rita Moreno got those two and one for Best Actress in a Broadway show—no one else has matched that

Puerto Rico has more gas stations, churches, cars, roads and Walgreens per square mile than any other country in the world

The most outstanding soldier in Europe at the end of the Second World War was chosen from the Puerto Rican 66th Infantry Battalion

One of three still living World War I veterans is a Puerto Rican

The first shot fired by the U.S. in World War I was in P.R. by Lt. Teofilo Marxuach

Puerto Ricans are the only people in the world who regularly applaud when a plane lands and when it reaches the gate

Not Too Bad for a 100 x 35 mile island…


NACOPRW Board of Directors
Executive Committee
National President, Vivian Ortiz
First Vice President, Deborah Lopez
Second Vice President, Sylvia Morrisroe
Treasurer, Evelyn Figueroa
Assist. Treasurer, Vilma Colom
Secretary,  Bequi Ortiz
Assist. Secretary, Edith Feliciano

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
Kerensa Figuera, Delegate, Philadelphia
Magna Diaz, Delegate, Philadelphia
Laura Almodovar-Sole,President, SoCal
Melva Rios Blanco, 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

Send Carmen Delgado Votaw
information about what your NACOPRW chapter is doing to help advance women’s causes so that we can share it in Ecos Nacionales.

Editor: Carmen Delgado

Assistant Editor, Bequi Ortiz


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