Laura Maristany is the Director of Policy and Legislative Affairs for the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund, where she serves as the organization’s chief federal advocate and Director of the Washington, D.C. office. NALEO Educational Fund is the nation’s leading non-profit organization that facilitates the full participation of Latinos in the American political process, from citizenship to public service. The organization’s constituency includes the more than 6,000 Latino elected and appointed officials nationwide. Prior to joining NALEO Educational Fund, Laura served as Executive Director of Legislative Affairs for the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU). During this time, Laura played a key role in developing and implementing the organization’s legislative agenda, which included policy efforts on comprehensive immigration reform, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the Farm Bill, the Higher Education Act, and the Workforce Investment Act. In this capacity, Laura also worked to develop and advance HACU's relations with Congress, the Administration, federal agencies and other national and local organizations. A seasoned advocate with extensive Capitol Hill and legislative experience, Laura previously served as Legislative Assistant to former Congressman Luis G. Fortuño. In this capacity, she counseled Congressman Fortuño on a range of issues including education, labor, housing and immigration. In 2009, Laura continued on as Legislative Assistant and Public Affairs Liaison for Congressman Pedro Pierluisi. As part of Congressman Pierluisi’s legislative team, Laura worked as the Staff Lead for the Congressional Friends of Spain Caucus. Until recently, Laura served as a Commissioner in Arlington County’s Commission on the Status of Women. She has also served as the President of the Hispanic Leaders Association, an organization with over 150 members across the United States committed to strengthening the bonds between the Hispanic Community in the U.S., Spain and Latin America. Laura previously served as Co-Chair of the Hispanic Education Coalition, a coalition of 26 National organizations dedicated to improving educational opportunities for the 51 million Latinos living in the United States and Puerto Rico. Laura holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Puerto RicoMayaguez Campus and a master’s degree in international commerce and policy from George Mason University.