The people of Puerto Rico have a special place in their hearts for Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams after Williams co-sponsored a resolution supporting the island’s effort toward statehood.
That’s the word from Puerto Rico’s secretary of state, Luis Rivera Marín, after the National Association of Secretaries of State voted in support of the resolution at its winter conference in Washington, D.C., this week.
The vote on Monday followed a debate where some secretaries said NASS had no business getting involved in Puerto Rico’s quest for statehood.
“I’m so grateful for Secretary Williams’ support for the people of Puerto Rico,” Marín said. “His support has been outstanding and all of the people of Puerto Rico are really grateful for that.”
The story of integrating America’s schools is a personal one for Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams, who often talks about growing up in Virginia and what inspired him to become involved in politics.
On Sunday Williams got to shake the hands of four members of what became known as the Little Rock Nine when the group received the highest award possible from the National Association of Secretaries of State. The emotional ceremony reduced the Arkansas secretary of state to tears and had Williams leaping to his feet to give standing ovations to the four.
The Little Rock Nine has received plenty of honors — in 1999 President Bill Clinton awarded each one the Congressional Gold Medal. But what makes the NASS award unique, said Ernest Green, who was present Sunday, is that is comes from elected officials who oversee most of the nation’s elections.
“You are the critical players,” he said, when he accepted the award. “It’s not who we elect to office but how we get that election done.”