We now occupy the proud attitude of a sovereign and independent Republic, which will impose upon us the obligation of evincing to the world that we are worthy to be free. This will only be accomplished by wise legislation, the maintenance of our integrity, and the faithful and just redemption of our plighted faith wherever it has been pledged.
My parents both came to the United States from the Dominican Republic, and they were deeply grateful for the opportunities this country provided. They raised my siblings and me to want to make a difference and give back. They taught us to work hard and aim high, but to also make sure the ladder was down to help others climb up.