The Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute’s (CHLI) Founder and Chairman, Lincoln Diaz-Balart and Vice-Chairman, Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart, were honored, March 7, 2017, at the National Association of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO) 2017 Edward R. Roybal Legacy Gala, for their outstanding Public Service in the Latino Community.
The night commenced with Roybal Gala emcee, Vanessa Hauc of Telemundo, welcoming the hundreds of attendees to a special evening in tribute of NALEO”s founder, The Honorable Edward R. Roybal. Roybal’s daughter, Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA- 40), recognized the Honorable Lincoln Diaz-Balart for his leadership while serving in Congress, promoting freedom, sponsoring legislation to help Dreamers and authoring the Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central American Relief Act (NACARA), which granted legal residency to hundreds of thousands of Nicaraguans and other mostly Central Americans. Congresswoman Roybal also recognized her fellow colleague, Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart, as one of the strongest leaders advocating for immigration reforms, defending individual rights and promoting economic prosperity.
CHLI Board Member, Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (Fl-27), NALEO’s 2013 Roybal honoree, expressed her admiration for the night’s honorees, whom she affectionately refers to as her “legislative brothers.” “It is because of their vision and leadership that we have been able to promote diversity of thought within the Hispanic community, through the creation of the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute. Thank you NALEO, for bestowing this honor so correctly,” said Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen.
“I have known Lincoln and Mario since I came to Congress and it has been an honor to work alongside two such dedicated public servants. They have been tireless in their efforts to protect not just their constituents but vulnerable populations all over the world. I congratulate them on receiving this great honor recognizing their dedication to the Latino community and look forward to continuing to work with them both,” regarded CHLI Board Member, Congressman Albio Sires (NJ-08).
“The fact that you have honored me with the person, the reason I am in Public Service, who is my hero, my leader and my example [The Honorable Lincoln Diaz-Balart] is very special,” expressed Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart upon accepting the award.
CHLI Chairman, Lincoln Diaz-Balart, also accepted the Roybal Award. Speaking to his former colleague, Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, he said, “What an extraordinary honor it is to be able to receive an award in the name of your great, late father [Edward R. Roybal]!” Chairman Lincoln Diaz-Balart then continued, saying that he was especially honored to receive this award along with his hero, his brother, Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart.
CHLI thanks Chairman Lincoln Diaz-Balart and Vice- Chairman Mario Diaz-Balart for their extraordinary commitment to the Hispanic community, and CHLI, and congratulates them for their much-deserved recognition as NALEO’s 2017 Roybal Awardees.
The Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute (CHLI) is the premier organization founded by Members of Congress and corporate executive leaders to advance the Hispanic community’s economic progress with a focus on social responsibility and global competitiveness. Founded in 2003, CHLI is a 501(c)3 non-profit and non-partisan organization. CHLI is dedicated to fostering a broad awareness of the diversity of thought, heritage, interests, and views of Americans of Hispanic and Portuguese descent.