In 2010, when Carmen M. Ortiz was sworn in as U.S. Attorney, she was the first Hispanic and the first woman to represent Massachusetts as U.S. Attorney. Highly respected in the legal community for her work on both sides of the justice system, she had previously served as a state and federal prosecutor and a criminal defense attorney. She serves as an inspiration to young people, as a model of the success and fulfillment that can come from a life in public service.
“I knew early on that I had the passion for being on the front lines as a litigator, representing the United States, while ensuring that both victims’ and defendants’ rights were protected,” Ortiz said.
A former Board member of Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy at UMass Boston, she promoted women’s education and involvement in public service. She also worked with a local legal services agency which provides free legal assistance to low-income families. Ms. Ortiz also served as a Board member of the Massachusetts Association of Hispanic Attorneys, helping to help further the careers of minority lawyers.
“Having now spent more than 30 years as a lawyer I have seen the law improve the lives of so many people, some of them living under very difficult circumstances,” said Ortiz. “It is a profound honor to be the U.S. Attorney and to work alongside some of the most talented prosecutors and investigators in law enforcement.”