EAST PROVIDENCE — City resident Hudson D. Carvalho was sworn in as the new president of the Portuguese American Citizens Committee of Rhode Island during a ceremony officiated by State Rep. Gregg Amore (D-Dist. 65) Saturday evening, Jan. 19, at the Madeira Restaurant on Warren Avenue.Mr. Carvalho, 30, takes over the gavel of the executive committee from David J. Andrade, who remains as the vice president.
“I’m extremely honored and humbled. It’s an absolutely terrific committee. I fully support what it strives to do,” Mr. Carvalho said. “I’m honored to be given this opportunity. Hopefully I won’t let anyone down.”
Founded in 1972, the Portuguese American Citizens Committee of Rhode Island is a civic organization dedicated to the socio-political enhancement of the Portuguese American Community.
According to its mission statement, “The Portuguese American Citizens Committee of Rhode Island is committed to the growth, evolution and betterment of the Portuguese American community. Our goal is to create and maintain new venues for the expression of Portuguese American culture, tradition and civic involvement in the larger Rhode Island community.”
It’s goals are as follows:
- To be a civic and social advocate of the Portuguese American community of Rhode Island.
- To promote and help facilitate voter registration among Portuguese Americans in Rhode Island while encouraging them to exercise the right to vote.
- To collaborate with other traditional community organizations, clubs and societies in order to promote the Portuguese culture and tradition in Rhode Island.
- To sponsor activities that will strengthen the prestige and social standing of the Portuguese American community.
- To recognize and award individuals that have aided, promoted and strengthen the Portuguese American community either through their endeavors or own personal/professional achievement.
- To endorse and support any political candidate who best represents the Portuguese American community and the larger community of Rhode Island.
- An to respect and cause to be respected all Federal, State and Municipal laws.
Mr. Carvalho has been a member of the committee for three years. He is a 2000 graduate of East Providence High School and is currently the manager of the Sovereign Bank branch in Pembroke, Mass. He is the father of eight-year-old Hudson J. Carvalho and the son of Mr. and Mrs. Fidelis and Maria Carvalho, also of East Providence.
With no elections scheduled for 2013, Mr. Carvalho, who will serve as president for two years, said his main goal this year is to solidify an endowment fund in the committee’s name.
“My focus is going to be getting the endowment fund established and solidified,” Mr. Carvalho explained. “We give away scholarships each year, but we want to have something set up for the future. We’ve already started to raise money. We have four years left on a five-year goal to raise $100,000.”
Mr. Andrade said over the last 40 years the Portuguese American Citizens Committee of Rhode Island has given out some $185,000 in scholarships to worthy students of Portuguese descent.
“Obviously we’re involved in politics, but we are also involved in education. And our main mission is to be responsive to the needs of the Portuguese community in the state,” Mr. Carvalho added.
Rep. Amore, who picked up an early endorsement from the Portuguese American Citizens Committee of Rhode Island, praised the group in his remarks. “It’s a great organization. They do great work. They’re very active. They represent the Portuguese community extremely well.”