Pedro Pierluisi was elected as Puerto Rico’s Governor on November 3rd, 2020. He is an attorney from San Juan with over 35 years of experience in both the public and private sectors, and has extensive litigation, arbitration and negotiation experience.
He began his professional career in Washington D.C. as an assistant to Puerto Rico’s delegate in Congress Baltasar Corrada del Río, and then worked for six years as a trial attorney in two prominent D.C. law firms. He returned to practice law in Puerto Rico in 1990 and served as Puerto Rico’s Attorney General (Secretary of Justice) from 1993 to 1996. As chief legal officer of the Government of Puerto Rico, he had a key role in the fight against crime and was commissioned by the White House to work with Members of Congress for the passage of the 1994 Crime bill, before returning to private practice as a partner at a prestigious local law firm for 11 years.
In 2008, Pierluisi was elected to Congress and served as Puerto Rico’s Resident Commissioner in the U.S. House of Representatives for eight years. As a Member of Congress he compiled an impressive record of achievements, such as ensuring that Puerto Rico was treated fairly in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the Affordable Care Act. Similarly, he worked to advance multiple initiatives to benefit the people of Puerto Rico in the areas of public safety, economic development, education, health, and environmental protection. While in Congress he served in the U.S. House Judiciary Committee (2009-2017), Natural Resources Committee (2009-2017), Education and Labor Committee (2009-2011) and was the first and only delegate to be a member of the Ethics Committee (2011-2015). Pierluisi has always advocated for equal rights for the American citizens residing on the Island, including a relentless fight for statehood for Puerto Rico.
As Governor, he has prioritized the reconstruction process after Hurricane María and the 2020 earthquakes, working with FEMA and HUD to expedite the disaster funding allocated to Puerto Rico, and leveraging pandemic relief funds to spur economic development. His administration was extremely successful in vaccination efforts, which placed Puerto Rico as the U.S. jurisdiction with most people fully vaccinated. Pierluisi has focused on infrastructure renovation and improving Puerto Rico’s education. He leads the fight against gender violence, increased the local minimum salary, and supports the transformation of Puerto Rico’s energy system to increase renewables and repair its aging electrical grid. He promoted the end of the government’s bankruptcy, which reduced public debt by nearly 80%. Puerto Rico’s economy has seen vast improvements under Pierluisi’s tenure, increasing labor participation and recording the lowest level of unemployment in the island’s history.
Pierluisi, who is the father of four adult children and a grandfather of six, earned his Bachelor’s degree in 1981 from Tulane University in New Orleans and his Juris Doctor in 1984 from George Washington University.