Governor-elect Ricardo Rosselló-Nevares moved forward Thursday with designations of cabinet members and for his team at La Fortaleza, including the new Executive Director of the Puerto Rico Tourism Co. and of Puerto Rico Trade and Export.
Attorney José Izquierdo will take the helm of the Tourism Co. armed with a Bachelor’s Degree in History, Latin American and Iberian Studies from Haverford College in Pennsylvania. He also studied Government and Economic Policy at the London School of Economics and Political Science.
José Izquierdo received his Juris Doctor from the University of Puerto Rico Law School, where he served as an assistant editor of the Law Review, was class president, and president of the Federal Bar Association.
Prior to his appointment, Izquierdo served as executive assistant and director of Legal and Legislative Affairs at the Department of Economic Development and Commerce, where he was in charge of public policy issues and coordinating the legislative agenda for the agency and related bodies.
At the time of his designation to Tourism, Izquierdo worked as a private practice lawyer and recently served as secretary general of the World Boxing Organization.
“We welcome Izquierdo to our administration and we appreciate his willingness and enthusiasm to serve Puerto Rico from the Tourism Company, “said Rosselló-Nevares, during a morning news press conference to announce his most recent designations.
Rosselló-Nevares also announced the appointment of lawmaker Ricardo Llerandi as the new executive director of the Puerto Rico Trade and Export Company.
The official, who will move from the legislative to the executive branch, has a degree in Business Administration with a major in accounting and a Juris Doctor degree from the UPR.
Llerandi has private-sector experience, having worked at the accounting department of First Medical and Borschow Hospital & Medical Supplies before spending six years as a litigator at the González Villamil law firm, in the areas of medical malpractice and insurance cases, both at the state and federal levels.
From 2013, he served as Representative for District 14, which includes the municipalities of Arecibo and Hatillo, being re-elected in the November elections. His vacancy must now be filled, and on Thursday, Arecibo Mayor Carlos Molina proposed José “Memo” González, Arecibo municipal administrator, to take over the seat.
During the news conference, Rosselló-Nevares also appointed Attorney Christian Sobrino-Vega as chief economic development advisor to the governor at La Fortaleza.
Sobrino-Vega holds a Bachelor of Arts from Boston College. In 2009, he obtained his Juris Doctor degree from the UPR Law School and began practicing in the corporate and tax law department at the O’Neill & Borges firm.
“I recognize the huge challenge facing this administration and this generation. But at the same time, I must emphasize that my faith in this team, the governor and his Plan for Puerto Rico is unwavering,” Sobrino-Vega said.
In 2013, he joined the corporate department of the Pietrantoni, Méndez & Álvarez law firm. His legal practice focused on financing transactions and corporate restructuring, financing and government procurement, corporate and real estate acquisitions, regulatory consulting banks, insurance and other regulated entities.
In 2015, he joined pharmaceutical company Abbvie as compliance manager, where until present, he led the ethics and compliance program for the company in Puerto Rico. In that position, he was also part of the management board responsible for leading the commercial operation of the pharmaceutical on the island.
From 2014 to 2016, Sobrino-Vega was part of the “Global Shapers” initiative of the World Youth Economic Forum, recognized for its leadership and potential to positively impact communities. He recently was part of the governor-elect’s “Plan for Puerto Rico” team, in the areas of economic development and its legislative component.
“The integration of Sobrino-Vega to our economic team at La Fortaleza will facilitate the coordination of our economic development and job creation policy,” Rosselló-Nevares said.
Other designations announced Thursday include Rafael Batista-Cruz as the new president of the Puerto Rico Public Broadcasting Corporation, and Ivelisse Torres-Rivera as Commissioner of the Puerto Rico Cooperative Development Committee.