Introductory Remarks for U.S. Treasurer Jovita Carranza at the SEC Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration
Sept. 25, 2018
Thank you Juanita [Hernandez] for that kind introduction. I want to welcome those joining us here in D.C., and our regional offices who are participating via VTC, to the SEC’s Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration.
Today’s event is just one of several events taking place at the SEC to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Last week, our Chicago Regional Office hosted Gloria Castillo, president and CEO of Chicago United, who spoke about her work to support diversity and inclusion in corporate America. This Thursday, our Philadelphia Regional Office will host Chief Judge Juan Sanchez of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Chief Judge Sanchez is the first Hispanic Chief Judge in that district. And, on October 10th, our New York Regional Office will host Chief Judge Dora Irizarry of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.
I want to thank all of those speakers, as well as the Hispanic and Latino Opportunity, Leadership and Advocacy Committee, and the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion for their efforts in connection with these important and enlightening events.
National Hispanic Heritage Month is an opportunity to recognize the contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans to the United States. Latinos own 350,000 businesses in the U.S. These businesses are directly responsible for nearly 3 million domestic jobs. Of course, one of the wonderful features of our economy is its level of integration. Small, medium and large businesses complement each other as do our various and diverse communities.
Nonetheless, I think it is important to highlight the incredible contribution of the Latino community to our economy. According to a 2017 report, the GDP produced by Latinos in the United States in 2015 was more than $2 trillion. To put that into context, if the Latino population in the United States were a country, it would have the 7th largest GDP in the world.
I will now turn to another source of strength, our honored guest today, U.S. Treasurer Jovita Carranza. Treasurer Carranza knows quite a bit about the size and strength of our economy. She serves as a principal advisor to Treasury Secretary Mnuchin. In that capacity, Treasurer Carranza has a broad portfolio. For example, Treasurer Carranza oversees the Office of Consumer Policy, which provides policy leadership to support Treasury’s mission to maintain a strong economy, and promote prosperity and stability. Treasurer Carranza also advises the Treasury Secretary on matters related to coinage produced by the U.S. Mint and has oversight responsibility for all operations of the U.S. Mint, including Fort Knox. And – fun fact – her signature is on our dollar bills. I brought a new dollar bill and want an autograph for my children (and me).
There is an area of Treasurer Carranza’s efforts that I want to highlight — financial literacy. Treasurer Carranza coordinates the interagency Financial Literacy and Education Commission on behalf of the Treasury Secretary. I commend her for her leadership on, and commitment to, this very important topic. In our very first meeting, over a year ago, Treasurer Carranza emphasized the importance of this topic to me.
I am happy to say that the SEC is committed to doing our part to address the need for investor education. In recent roundtables with Main Street investors across the country, we have heard that, in general, understanding of key concepts around saving and investing are unfortunately far below where we believe they should be, particularly in light of the increasing responsibility to plan and fund one’s own retirement. Through our Office of Investor Education and Advocacy and other initiatives, we are actively working to improve financial literacy.
I applaud Treasurer Carranza for her leadership in this important area!
Please join me in welcoming U.S. Treasurer Carranza.
 Arnobio Morelix et al., The U.S. Latino Entrepreneurship Gap: A Comparative Measure of Latino Entrepreneurship Activity, Stanford Graduate School of Business and Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative (July 2018).
 Werner Schink and David Hayes-Bautista, Latino Gross Domestic Product (GDP) Report: Quantifying the Impact of American Hispanic Economic Growth, Latino Donor Collaborative (June 2017), available at http://latinodonorcollaborative.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Latino-Gross-Domestic-Product-GDP-Report-Quantifying-the-Impact-of-American-Hispanic-Economic-Growth-June-2017.pdf.