Hispanic Heritage Month

By: Ashmar Mandou

We continue our Hispanic Heritage Month by highlighting two phenomenal role models who exemplify compassion, altruism, and determination to improve their surrounding communities. This week, we shine a spotlight on Senior Vice President, Regulatory and Energy Policy and General Counsel Verónica Gómez and President and CEO of Mujeres Latinas en Acción Linda Tortolero.

Verónica Gómez

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local News

Politics was always the topic of conversation in the Gómez household. “We talked about world events, and discussed the political climate in Cuba on a regular basis,” recalled Verónica Gómez, senior vice president, regulatory and energy policy and general counsel at ComEd, whose parents left Cuba’s rising governmental tension for Chicago. “We did not shy away from discussing politics and in many ways that shaped me. I learned many lessons from my parents, and from their experiences. They were able to put three daughters through college due to their hard work. I look up to my parents for many reasons.” Gómez carried her interest in politics through college where she majored in Political Science and Economics from Stanford University and received her law degree from the University of Chicago Law School. “Hearing the stories from my parents, it was of tremendous interest that I pursue a career in law because I wanted to help people in that capacity, I wanted to represent them.”

Gómez previously served as the vice president and deputy general counsel for litigation at Exelon, ComEd’s parent company. In that role, Gómez was responsible for litigation cases on behalf of all Exelon companies, including ComEd. This litigation included third-party disputes and litigation in support of multi-billion dollar transactions. Prior to joining Exelon, Gómez was a litigation partner at Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg and before that at Schopf & Weiss (now Honigman Miller), where she served on the Executive Committee. Since January, Gómez entered her new role at ComEd as the organization’s primary legal advisor and oversees the company’s regulatory policy, strategy and rates function. “I am excited and honored to work for an organization that really thinks of the community first. ComEd really follows through on its mission of developing greater neighborhoods through its programs, through its volunteer efforts.” As for Hispanic Heritage Month, Gómez believes this time serves as a great opportunity to celebrate diversity. “Our culture is rich in diversity, there are so many layers, so much history that it is wonderful to celebrate our achievements and contributions to this country.”

Linda Tortolero

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local News

Lucky was a word Linda Tortolero heard quite often in her childhood. “My parents always made a conscious effort to remind us how lucky we were. We were lucky to have the opportunities they did not have in Mexico. They did not want us to take for granted our education, our circumstance, they did not want us to take for granted our ability to help others,” said Tortolero. Altruism is the cornerstone for Tortolero dedicating her time and effort to improving the lives of others who are less fortunate. Tortolero earned a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University in Political Science and History of Modern Latin America and a Juris Doctor from Northwestern Pritzker School of Law. Regarded highly as a development and marketing expert, having served most recently as the Director of Development at the Association House of Chicago.

In her capacity at the Association House, she was responsible of managing the daily operations for all fundraising and marketing activities. She built strategic relationships with stakeholders and created and executed the annual development plan in order to support the organization’s mission. Before this role, Tortolero served as the Special Projects Director at the National Museum of Mexican Art and as the Development Manager at Mujeres. “In this new role at Mujeres Latinos en Acción, I will continue to advocate for, and address the immediate needs facing Latinas and their families,” said Tortolero. “I hope to contribute to the future successes and collective efforts to shine a light on crucial issues that face Latina women and their families in the Chicagoland area. Is it imperative that we work together to create more opportunities for women to be able to change their circumstance, to better their lives because I cannot take how “lucky” I am for granted and not help others in need.”

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