Attorney General Eric Holder dropped by Boston yesterday to see an old friend sworn in as U.S. Attorney.
Massachusetts U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz first met Holder three decades ago when she was a student at George Washington University Law School interning at the Justice Department Public Integrity Section, the Boston Globe reported. Holder was then a trial lawyer in the section.
“Have we come a long way, huh?” Ortiz, the state’s first Hispanic and female U.S. Attorney said to Holder, the country’s first black Attorney General, according to the newspaper.
Holder praised Ortiz as a natural leader and well-rounded lawyer, The Globe said.
“Latinas have done pretty well over the last few months, and deservedly so,” the Attorney General said in an apparent reference to Justice Sonia Sotomayor, according to the newspaper.
Ortiz told hundreds of supporters and dignitaries packed into a John Joseph Moakley Courthouse courtroom that fighting terrorism is her “first priority,” according to The Globe. She also let the crowd know that she became engaged New Year’s Day to Thomas Dolan, who works at IBM, The Globe said.
Ortiz was officially sworn in on Nov. 9, a few days after the Senate confirmed her to succeed Michael Sullivan, who was the Bush administration’s top federal prosecutor in Boston. U.S. Attorneys often have a later ceremonial investiture with local, state and federal leaders in attendance. Ortiz’s swearing was the seventh such ceremony attended by Holder since he became Attorney General.