The Portuguese-American Leadership Council of the United States
Serving our Community for 29 Years!
LUSUS Newsletter
The Online Newsletter of PALCUS
Special Edition - December 21, 2020

PALCUS is excited to welcome five new Board Members to our team:
Ana R. Ferreira, Esq.
Cristina Da Silva, Esq.
Jack de Oliveira
Manny Antunes
Sergio Ferreira

"The collective expertise and knowledge that our new Board members bring to the organization is nothing short of magnificent. Not to mention their passion and commitment to the Portuguese community is more than admirable. We look forward to bringing them into the fold and working together as an all-volunteer working board to continue advocating on behalf of our community, providing new opportunities and promoting our rich culture. Welcome aboard!" - Angela Costa Simoes, Chair
Ana R. Ferreira, Esq. - Pennsylvania
Ferreira Law
PALCUS Member since 2019
"I joined PALCUS because I am proud to be Portuguese-American and I want my children to have a way to stay connected to their cultural heritage". 

In 2015, Ana Ferreira became the founding member of Ferreira Law, a full-service boutique immigration law firm designed to provide guidance and professional legal services to the immigrant community located in Philadelphia and the surrounding areas. As a child of immigrants and as a first-generation citizen, Ana is deeply passionate about the immigration process. Both her parents and her in-laws came to the United States to seek a better life for themselves and their families. She feels fortunate to have grown up in Philadelphia’s deeply rich Portuguese community, and have had the pleasure of directly witnessing families achieve their own personal American Dream. Unfortunately she is also all too familiar with families being torn apart by our nation’s harsh immigration system. With this background, she knew from a young age that she wanted to focus her career on helping immigrants achieve their goals.

Her legal career began at The Pennsylvania State University, where she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Crime, Law and Justice. Ana went on to attend law school at The Delaware Law School where she represented indigent clients in court as a certified legal intern for The Delaware Law School Criminal Defense Clinic.

After law school, Ana served as a Judicial Fellow to the Honorable Joseph Fernandes at the Family Court of Philadelphia. Now, Ana utilizes her background and legal expertise to do what she loves most -strive to assist each and every one of her clients in achieving their own version of the American Dream and provide competent and thorough legal services to members of her beloved community.

Ana is fluent in English, Portuguese, and Spanish and is licensed to practice law in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Welcome Ana!
Cristina Da Silva, Esq. - New York
Law Office of Cristina Garcia Da Silva
PALCUS Member since 2018
"I admire many of the Board members I have met over the last two years for their dedication to this organization. I have been quite impressed by the initiatives, especially the Make Portuguese Count campaign, which I think was a great success! I want to be part of the PALCUS Board of Directors because I believe in the mission statement and want to promote and advocate for our Portuguese-American community, as I have throughout my life, but now in a more official capacity. As an attorney, I may be able to assist with legal matters and contracts and anything that my background can be of assistance".

Cristina is a first-generation Portuguese-American born and raised in Westchester, New York. 

She has been an active member of both the Portuguese American Cultural Center of the Tarrytowns and the Ossining Portuguese Center, having emceed and organized numerous events in both communities. Since its inception in 1997, Cristina has been involved in some capacity in the Dia de Portugal festivities in Ossining, which has grown tremendously over the years and gained a reputation as a "go-to" Festa!

Cristina attended and graduated from Portuguese school at the Escola Rainha Santa Isabel in Ossining and has always felt so grateful to her parents for teaching her their native language. She later studied Spanish and French in college and today, as an attorney, and with a diverse clientele, she is able to communicate with her clients in their native languages, which makes her job that much more rewarding. She has had her own law firm since May of 2006 and will soon be celebrating her 15th anniversary. Her firm concentrates on real estate transactions and criminal defense. Cristina loves advocating for her clients, just as she has always advocated for the members of the Portuguese community.
Welcome Cristina!
Jack de Oliveira - Connecticut
Legislative Assistant for the Connecticut General Assembly
Public Official for the Borough of Naugatuck
PALCUS Member since 2017
"I chose to join PALCUS because it is the leading Portuguese-American organization in the United States. PALCUS has given me the opportunity to connect with other Portuguese from across the country who share the same passion and commitment to our Portuguese cultures and heritage here in the United States".

Jack DeOliveira is a community leader and legislative expert in Connecticut. Jack is currently serving his second term as a Burgess in the Borough of Naugatuck and is employed by the Connecticut General Assembly as a legislative assistant. Jack recently graduated with a Masters in Diplomacy from Norwich University and received his bachelors from The University of Alabama.

Jack has a passion for public policy and devotes most of his time working in and around his community. In addition to his public service, Jack is a member of several boards and community organizations, including the Greater Waterbury Transit District, the Naugatuck Portuguese Club, The University of Alabama National Alumni Association and the Connecticut Boys and Girls State Foundation.

Jack has several years of experience working directly with federal, state, and local stakeholders to promote community engagement and participation. Jack helps constituents and decision-makers come together to create positive impacts on society. You can expect 100% transparency, an outgoing personality, and no surprises when working with Jack.

Jack is an avid soccer and Crimson Tide football fan, and enjoys hiking or kicking it on the pitch in his free time.
Welcome Jack!
Manny Antunes - New Jersey
Research Manager at Audible, Inc.
PALCUS Member since 2020
"I wish to serve on the Board of Directors of PALCUS to help advocate for the Portuguese-American community and the issues they face as well as to promote Portuguese culture. I hope to create novel ways to engage in outreach with younger members of the community, especially as the community continues to grow with second and third generation Portuguese Americans (many of whom may not understand the language or have only vague ideas about the culture). I also hope to raise awareness around particular issues often not discussed among Portuguese Americans, including the community's relationship with its LGBTQI+ members, dwindling memberships at local Portuguese clubs, and intersectionality with other immigrant communities in the United States". 

Manny has spent significant time in three distinct Portuguese communities. He was born and grew up in Newark, New Jersey, where he was exposed to the dynamic area that is the Ironbound (what may the unofficial capital of Portugal in the United States). He then spent high school and college in Massachusetts, where he met members of one of the oldest Portuguese communities in the United States. He then went to law school close to where his father grew up in Soho (Manhattan) where there is a small but distinct Portuguese community on Sullivan Street near the Church of Saint Anthony.
Manny is also a trained lawyer but currently works as a researcher in the Officer of the Executive Chairman & Founder at Audible. He also runs a local podcast in Newark and is an editor/contributor to a local magazine.
Welcome Manny!
Sergio Ferreira - Massachusetts
Chief Underwriter & Director of Rental Operations, MassHousing
PALCUS Member since 2020
“I am thrilled to join the Board of Directors of PALCUS, the sole national advocate for Portuguese-American communities across our great country! It is an honor to serve with such a diverse, dedicated and accomplished group of leaders to strengthen our communities at home while promoting our close ties with the government, enterprises and people of our beloved Portugal.”

A first generation Portuguese-American growing up in the heart of the Portuguese community in Peabody, Massachusetts, Mr. Ferreira is a lifelong lusophile, relishing in the food, wine, people, history and culture of Portugal…
As Chief Underwriter & Director of Rental Operations at MassHousing in Boston, he directs all multifamily rental lending while overseeing the deployment of teams of underwriters, architects, engineers, appraisers and construction specialists. He brings more than 30 years of private and public sector leadership experience and, with HUD and several industry groups, has worked for decades to develop successful state and national programs and policies that provide quality affordable housing to people of low and moderate means. He holds an AB in Economics from Boston College and an MBA from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell and resides in Melrose, Massachusetts with his wife and two children.  
Welcome Sergio!
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