Jorge O. Elorza Sworn in as 38th Mayor of Providence

PROVIDENCE, RI – Jorge O. Elorza was sworn in at 12 a.m. on January 5, 2015 as Providence’s 38th Mayor. The private ceremony, which marked the official transition of power in the City of Providence, was held at Mayor Elorza’s home with family and friends. Probate Court Judge John E. Martinelli administered the oath of office.

Elorza, 38, a former Housing Court Judge and professor at the Roger Williams University School of Law, is the son of Guatemalan immigrants who worked in factories and was raised in the city’s West End. He graduated from Classical High School before going on to the University of Rhode Island and Harvard Law School.

As a law professor at Roger Williams University, Mayor Elorza co-founded the Latino Policy Institute, a think-tank dedicated to research on Latino and minority communities in Rhode Island. While serving on Providence’s Housing Court, Mayor Elorza created a process to hold large banks accountable for abandoned properties in the city.

Mayor Elorza began his first morning as Mayor by joining with local faith leaders at an Interfaith Breakfast held at the Providence Career and Technical Academy.

Mayor Elorza’s public inauguration took place at 2 p.m. on the steps of City Hall, in front of a crowd of several hundred residents and dignitaries. The ceremony was free and open to the public.

Victor Capellan, a community leader, educational consultant and co-chair of Mayor Elorza’s transition team, served as the Inauguration’s Master of Ceremonies.

The Providence Fire Department and Providence Police Department Honor Guard conducted the Presentation of Colors. The Reverend Maria DeCarvalho, an ordained priest with the Episcopal Diocese of Rhode Island, gave the Invocation.

The Pledge of Allegiance was led by students from the first and second grade classes at the Lillian Feinstein School at Sackett Street. The National Anthem was performed by Ashley Soto, a junior at Classical High School who brought to life Mayor Elorza’s campaign theme song.

Governor Gina Raimondo delivered greetings from the State of Rhode Island.

Jamie Espinal, a teacher, poet and Christian hip hop artist, recited “The Time Is Now,” a poem written especially for Mayor Elorza’s Inauguration.

The Oath of Office was administered by retired state Superior Court Judge the Honorable Judge Francis J. Darigan, Jr.

Edward D. Feldstein, a Providence attorney and close friend of Mayor Elorza, presented the Mayor for his delivery of the Inaugural Address.

“Now more than ever, we must be creative, we must be resourceful, and we must work together to launch our city forward,” Mayor Elorza said. “Providence’s prosperity depends on us. I am confident that, together, we will seize the moment and provide the leadership our great city deserves.”

The ceremony will conclude with a Benediction offered by Dr. James P. Huguley. The Rhode Island Highlanders Pipe Band will perform during the exit processional.

Following the inauguration, Mayor Elorza held a reception inside City Hall that was free and open to the public.

At 7 p.m., Mayor Elorza hosted his One Providence Inaugural Celebration at the Cranston Street Armory, where there hasn’t been an inaugural celebration in decades. The inaugural celebration featured food and performances that highlighted Providence’s artistic, cultural and culinary scene.

The inaugural celebration, which was free and was open to the public, was sold out. The celebration concluded with an exciting lineup of events held throughout the weekend to showcase Providence and promote community service. On Saturday, January 3, Mayor Elorza asked residents to celebrate their civic pride and give back to the community through volunteerism by participating in his One Providence Day of Service. Food items were collected for the Rhode Island Food Bank at venues across the city. The Providence Children’s Museum hosted the Children’s Inaugural Celebration. The event was free for Providence residents.

No taxpayer dollars were used to pay for any of the inaugural events.

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