The 10 principles that U.S. Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz lives by,
and the mentors that guided her, are what she credits with her
successful rise to become Massachusetts' first Hispanic -- and
first woman -- U.S. attorney.
"Dare to dream," Ortiz said, sharing the first of the 10
principles with participants of the Massachusetts Bar Association's
Tiered Community Mentoring program at its April 28 final event at
the John J. Moakley U.S. District Courthouse.
Ortiz went on to list the nine others, elaborating on how each has
had an impact on her career: believe in yourself, be confident,
lean on family and friends, take advantage of opportunity, have
diverse job experience, forge relationships, handle disappointment
with class, don't be afraid to ask for help and be positive.
"It's really important not to limit yourself and to not let others
limit you," Ortiz said.
The program -- a collaboration among the MBA, Suffolk
University Law School, Boston University Law School, Roxbury
Community College, UMASS Boston and New Mission High School --
aims to reach urban high school students by building a diverse
mentoring network. The program matches tiered groups,
comprising a high school student, an undergraduate student, a law
student and an attorney or judge.
The final event also included the distribution of four $500
scholarships to participating students.
"I look forward to seeing you make your way through undergraduate
studies, law school and hopefully admission to the bar," MBA
President Denise Squillante told the high school students in
attendance. "Certainly, you will be well poised for that career
track, should you decide to take it, thanks in part to this
wonderful mentoring program."
Other featured speakers at the event included Norfolk Probate and
Family Court First Justice Angela M. Ordoñez, whose ideas led to
the creation of the mentoring program, and Suffolk University Law
School Dean and Professor of Law Camille A. Nelson, who urged the
students to find their own unique voice.
"Realize that you have power and you have possibility and you have
potential because of all that's within you," Nelson said, who also
touted the role that mentors can play in a person's success.
The event's second keynote speaker was John Gibbons, U.S. marshal
for the District of Massachusetts, the first African-American to be
in his position in 220 years. Gibbons, who grew up in Newark, N.J.,
said it was hard work, dedication and perseverance that helped him
attain this title. "It all paid off, and it continues to pay off