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Brophy Roundup

The Student News Site of Brophy College Preparatory

Brophy Roundup

The Student News Site of Brophy College Preparatory

Brophy Roundup

Brophy should be coed
Brophy should be coed
February 28, 2024
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The Legacy of Congressman Ed Pastor

The+Legacy+of+Congressman+Ed+Pastor
Ed Pastor (right) with his wife and grandson at Brophy Grandparent’s Day on May 2, 2018. 

By Frankie Pastor ’20

THE ROUNDUP

 

The Honorable Ed Pastor is known as a political trailblazer and public servant, I was blessed to have him as my Tata (grandfather).

Congressman Ed Pastor was born on Jun. 28, 1943, in the small mining town of Claypool, AZ, to a housekeeper and copper miner, Margarita and Enrique Pastor.

Although they did not have much, Enrique and Margarita insured their children had pride in their Mexican-American roots, the value of education, and the importance of hard work. With these values instilled in him, my grandfather began working at a young age by delivering the daily newspaper throughout the town and never stopped working.

Many thought Pastor would follow his father’s footsteps and become a miner.

Yet, Enrique and Margarita did not have these aspirations for their son and were determined to get their children through high school and college.

Due to his tenacious drive and excellent school grades, Pastor earned a scholarship to attend Arizona State University and was the first in his family to earn their Bachelor’s Degree.

Graduating ASU with a degree in chemistry, my grandfather began his career as a high school educator at North High School.

He would teach chemistry by day and teach migrant farm workers how to read, write, and speak English, at night.

He often credited this experience for inspiring him to enter politics. He returned to ASU in the 70’s to earn his Juris Doctorate providing him the opportunity to become a close advisor, employee, and friend to Governor Raul Castro, Arizona’s first and only Latino governor.

During his tenure with Governor Castro, the community became aware of my grandfather’s leadership and political skills. In 1976, he was elected as Maricopa County Supervisor, serving for three terms.

In 1991, Congressman Morris Udall who represented the 2nd Congressional District announced his retirement and my grandfather decided this was his opportunity to represent Arizona on the national level.

My grandfather was successful in this endeavor becoming Arizona’s first Mexican-American Congressman.

For 23 years, he represented Arizona. During his congressional career, he sat on one of the largest and most sought out committees, the Appropriations Committee.

This allowed him to push for legislative measures which Arizona benefitted from, including funding for the light rail system that runs through Phoenix, Tempe, Glendale and Mesa.

He was also a strong advocate for public education. Again, as an Appropriations Committee Member, he successfully pushed for funding for public schools in Arizona.

He was part of the North American Free Trade Agreement, and in 1993, he introduced to Congress a resolution for universal health care, although it did not move out of the committee.

From 1995-1997, Pastor served as Chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, advocating and directing legislative measures that helped the Hispanic community across the nation.

My grandfather also served a tenure as the chief deputy whip for the House Democrats.

While in office, President Barack Obama asked him to serve in his administration as Secretary of Transportation. However, my grandfather ultimately decided to decline the President’s offer because he was ready to come home.

In 2014, after representing the 2nd, 4th, and 7th congressional districts of Arizona for 23 years, my grandfather announced his retirement.

Even though he officially retired at the end of his term in 2015, many local and national politicians sought him for advice and support.

He continued his legacy by serving on many local committees including the Chair of the City of Phoenix’s Transportation Board.

During his Congressional terms and even after retirement, he continued to receive many honors. My grandfather won awards and had several statewide landmarks including schools, transportation centers, and parks, named after him.

These honors include the Ed and Verma Pastor Elementary School, Ed Pastor Transit Center, and the Ed Pastor Center of Politics and Public Service at ASU.

Arizona Congressman Ruben Gallego, who succeeded my grandfather, introduced a bill in 2016 to name a post office in his namesake with the bill being passed and the naming of the Ed Pastor Postal Office in downtown Phoenix.

Upon his passing, he was the fourth person to lay in state at the Arizona State Capitol. The days that followed his death, Governor Ducey ordered for flags to be flown at half staff in my grandfather’s honor.

He, Cindy McCain, Senator Flake, Senator Kyle, Senator McSally, Speaker Pelosi, Representative Raúl Grijalva, and countless others from across the country, attended his services.

On the day of his funeral, Speaker Pelosi stated that flags at the Nation’s Capitol were flying at half staff as well.

Congressman Ed Pastor was the best grandfather anyone could ask for. When others asked about his plans for retirement, he proudly stated he would spend time with his four grandchildren.

He was a man always dedicated to his family. He would come back from D.C. every weekend to spend time with the entire family.

November 27, 2018, will be an unforgettable date for my family due to his passing. He leaves a legacy of leadership and accomplishments for Arizona.

onorable Ed Pastor is known as a political trailblazer and public servant, I was blessed to have him as my Tata (grandfather).

Congressman Ed Pastor was born on Jun. 28, 1943, in the small mining town of Claypool, AZ, to a housekeeper and copper miner, Margarita and Enrique Pastor.

Although they did not have much, Enrique and Margarita insured their children had pride in their Mexican-American roots, the value of education, and the importance of hard work. With these values instilled in him, my grandfather began working at a young age by delivering the daily newspaper throughout the town and never stopped working.

Many thought Pastor would follow his father’s footsteps and become a miner.

Yet, Enrique and Margarita did not have these aspirations for their son and were determined to get their children through high school and college.

Due to his tenacious drive and excellent school grades, Pastor earned a scholarship to attend Arizona State University and was the first in his family to earn their Bachelor’s Degree.

Graduating ASU with a degree in chemistry, my grandfather began his career as a high school educator at North High School.

He would teach chemistry by day and teach migrant farm workers how to read, write, and speak English, at night.

He often credited this experience for inspiring him to enter politics. He returned to ASU in the 70’s to earn his Juris Doctorate providing him the opportunity to become a close advisor, employee, and friend to Governor Raul Castro, Arizona’s first and only Latino governor.

During his tenure with Governor Castro, the community became aware of my grandfather’s leadership and political skills. In 1976, he was elected as Maricopa County Supervisor, serving for three terms.

In 1991, Congressman Morris Udall who represented the 2nd Congressional District announced his retirement and my grandfather decided this was his opportunity to represent Arizona on the national level.

My grandfather was successful in this endeavor becoming Arizona’s first Mexican-American Congressman.

For 23 years, he represented Arizona. During his congressional career, he sat on one of the largest and most sought out committees, the Appropriations Committee.

This allowed him to push for legislative measures which Arizona benefitted from, including funding for the light rail system that runs through Phoenix, Tempe, Glendale and Mesa.

He was also a strong advocate for public education. Again, as an Appropriations Committee Member, he successfully pushed for funding for public schools in Arizona.

He was part of the North American Free Trade Agreement, and in 1993, he introduced to Congress a resolution for universal health care, although it did not move out of the committee.

From 1995-1997, Pastor served as Chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, advocating and directing legislative measures that helped the Hispanic community across the nation.

My grandfather also served a tenure as the chief deputy whip for the House Democrats.

While in office, President Barack Obama asked him to serve in his administration as Secretary of Transportation. However, my grandfather ultimately decided to decline the President’s offer because he was ready to come home.

In 2014, after representing the 2nd, 4th, and 7th congressional districts of Arizona for 23 years, my grandfather announced his retirement.

Even though he officially retired at the end of his term in 2015, many local and national politicians sought him for advice and support.

He continued his legacy by serving on many local committees including the Chair of the City of Phoenix’s Transportation Board.

During his Congressional terms and even after retirement, he continued to receive many honors. My grandfather won awards and had several statewide landmarks including schools, transportation centers, and parks, named after him.

These honors include the Ed and Verma Pastor Elementary School, Ed Pastor Transit Center, and the Ed Pastor Center of Politics and Public Service at ASU.

Arizona Congressman Ruben Gallego, who succeeded my grandfather, introduced a bill in 2016 to name a post office in his namesake with the bill being passed and the naming of the Ed Pastor Postal Office in downtown Phoenix.

Upon his passing, he was the fourth person to lay in state at the Arizona State Capitol. The days that followed his death, Governor Ducey ordered for flags to be flown at half staff in my grandfather’s honor.

He, Cindy McCain, Senator Flake, Senator Kyle, Senator McSally, Speaker Pelosi, Representative Raúl Grijalva, and countless others from across the country, attended his services.

On the day of his funeral, Speaker Pelosi stated that flags at the Nation’s Capitol were flying at half staff as well.

Congressman Ed Pastor was the best grandfather anyone could ask for. When others asked about his plans for retirement, he proudly stated he would spend time with his four grandchildren.

He was a man always dedicated to his family. He would come back from D.C. every weekend to spend time with the entire family.

November 27, 2018, will be an unforgettable date for my family due to his passing. He leaves a legacy of leadership and accomplishments for Arizona.

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