October 05, 2003

The Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials (GALEO) announced it's formation in Atlanta, Georgia. Its primary purpose is to increase representation of Latino/Hispanic elected and appointed officials and to proactively address the issues and needs of Georgia's burgeoning Hispanic community. Additionally, GALEO plans to engage the Latino community in the democratic and policy process throughout the State of Georgia, promoting and encouraging involvement in the political process.

Senator Sam Zamarripa (SD-36), Representative Pedro Marin (HD-66) and Judge Tony del Campo (DeKalb County State Court) form the nucleus of GALEO. All statewide elected officials have been invited to join the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials. Senator Sam Zamarripa explained, "We want to provide the Latino community with an organized and a concerted Legislative Agenda where we can seek the assistance and guidance of all elected officials to support our initiatives." Representative Pedro Marin added, "GALEO will empower the Hispanic community in the democratic process in Georgia." According to Judge Tony del Campo, "GALEO will achieve sound public policy within the framework of collaboration, partnership and inclusion with other elected and appointed officials, along with the state's business and civic community."

GALEO's Executive Director will be Jerry Gonzalez, a veteran Hispanic community advocate. "I'm very excited and proud of the opportunity to guide GALEO over the next several years. There are many issues affecting the everyday life and livelihood of Georgia's growing Hispanic community. We plan to work closely with the Latino community and our elected and appointed leaders in developing the very best possible government policy for our community."

GALEO's funding is comprised of both individual and corporate contributions. GALEO has been and will continue to accept $1,000 contributions to its "100 Founding Friends of GALEO" through December 31st of this year. An additional contributing level is the $500 "Friends of GALEO."

GALEO is a statewide nonprofit and non-partisan organization initiated to provide another voice for the growing Latino political force in Georgia, and to provide a framework for collaborative and proactive legislative initiatives for Georgia's Hispanic community.

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