By Leonard Rodriguez
This column highlights inspiring stories of Latino leaders. For more than 500 years, Latino men and women have positively influenced the face of United States society. Let us celebrate these outstanding hispanics

Luis V. Gutierrez

Establishing his reputation as a community leader, Luis V. Gutierrez was elected to Chicago’s City Council in 1986. He led the charge to build more affordable housing for the working poor and worked tirelessly for the passage of the Chicago Human Rights Amendment, which prevents discrimination in housing and hiring based upon sexual orientation.

Bringing this same passion for equality and community involvement to his bid for Congress, became the first Hispanic U.S. Congressman from the Midwest when he was elected Nov. 3, 1992, with 78 percent of the vote. Since his election, Gutierrez has kept his promise and established the “Gutierrez Community Corps,” a group of volunteers dedicated to improving Chicago’s inner-city community,