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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ralph Torres
Ralph Torres.jpg
9th Governor of the Northern Mariana Islands
Assumed office
December 29, 2015
LieutenantVictor Hocog
Arnold Palacios
Preceded byEloy Inos
10th Lieutenant Governor of the Northern Mariana Islands
In office
January 12, 2015 – December 29, 2015
GovernorEloy Inos
Preceded byJude Hofschneider
Succeeded byVictor Hocog
Personal details
Born
Ralph Deleon Guerrero Torres

(1979-08-06) August 6, 1979 (age 40)
Saipan, Mariana Islands, Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Diann Mendiola Tudela
Children6
EducationBoise State University (BA)

Ralph Deleon Guerrero Torres (born August 6, 1979) is an American Republican politician from Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands. He has served as the ninth Governor of the Northern Mariana Islands since the death of Governor Eloy Inos on December 29, 2015. He previously served as the tenth Lieutenant Governor, having been elected to that post in 2014.[1]

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • ✪ Commencement | Fanuchånan (Fall) 2017 – Ralph DLG. Torres

Transcription

I'm proud to stand in front of this very distinguished group of graduates and a few hundred of their friends and to introduce someone who could easily pass for a student here at the University of Guam. He was born in 1979 and I was already 30 years old He graduated from Boise High School in 1996 and earned a bachelor's degree in political science from Boise State He missed out on his opportunity to attend UOG but here's today He is one of six children and he and his wife Diane also have six children With this pattern and at his age he might have 36 grandchildren by the time he's my age He returned home to Saipan and won election to the Northern Marianas House of Representatives in 2008 He then won election to the Northern Marianas two years later in 2010. After one term he was elected to be President of the Senate by his colleagues. He then became a candidate for lieutenant governor in 2015 and at the untimely death of the governor he became the governor of the Northern Marianas. Now he's the youngest governor amongst all the governors in the United States. Given the quick trajectory of his political career before the age of 40, he is the personification of the Word of the Year by Oxford Dictionary youthquake. Now there are two unique things about this young governor I saw a picture of him and President Trump in the Oval Office. He also speaks Chamorro I don't know which impresses me more. Actually I do know which impresses me more And maybe he can tell us a little bit about his experiences in Washington DC [In Chamorro] I'm proud to present to you the Marianas version of youthquake the Honorable Ralph Torres, Governor of the Northern Marianas Islands. Wow You know when doc say youthquake you remind me of my six children at home We call that child quake Good morning everyone Hafa adai [In Chamorro] Lieutenant Governor Ray Tenorio, all the VIPs this morning or this afternoon family, friends, and graduates Thank you for inviting me to join you today on this special occasion and on behalf of the people of the Northern Mariana Islands Your brothers and sisters to the north Congratulations You are now joining the ranks of your fellow UOG alumni Many of whom have went on to accomplish great things for our region my mentor and predecessor the late governor, Eloy s Inos, was also a graduate just like you And in fact I have several of my members of my staff who also graduated from U of I are proud Tritons So I know that you're in good hands Today is the culmination of years of hard work, dedication, sacrifices and anticipation. You've taken away time from your families, friends, and some of you Sped will come from across the region like far away like Saipan or Tinian Rota, Palau, and all around our region. To spend this time to learn about the world but more importantly to learn about yourselves Whether you realize it or not you have discovered that you are stronger today than you were yesterday You've learned your strength and are ready to apply them to making our islands a better place but I hope that you've also learned about your weaknesses and what we also heard earlier with our valedictorian I say this because it is understanding and embracing your weaknesses that you see the roadmap for your future. I know quite a bit about this First off And I was telling this to the president. I know I am not the greatest public speaker There are great speakers in our islands People that can bring you in, gravitate your attention to speak directly to your hearts In the early days of our administration, I honestly shied away From long speeches Because I knew that it was a weakness of mine but today your president challenged me that and realizing and practicing and feeling just a little accomplishment goes a long way but you gotta push yourself Today, this is the largest crowd I have ever given a speech to We all have witnesses You can see them as limitation or you can see your weaknesses as an opportunity and as you enter into the world This is the advice I want to impart on you You have weaknesses, yes? Maybe? But the only thing that prevents you from going from where you are now To the greatness you're capable of is your own willingness to fight for yourself To do the hard work that is necessary to turn those weaknesses into strength and realize that no one is going to fight for you more than you're willing to fight for yourself And I'm going to say that one more time Realize That no one is going to fight for you more than you're willing to fight for yourself Today ladies and gentlemen when you walk up that stage it is you that's holding that degree Our families, our friends those are our support group but it is you, your hard work. And I'm not no expert by any means But my life and who I am today has molded my understanding of this and if I may Mr. President and class I would like to share a couple of my stories with you. I don't often tell people I graduate at the age of 16 in high school because the first thing they think is Oh my God, malate smart guy But far from it See growing up in Saipan in Koblerville my mom had two jobs. She was a elementary school teacher My dad work as a field worker For the government and in the evenings you'll fish most of the time believe it or not we had fresh fish almost every morning No complaints. It's what we had and we loved it. In fact, we loved it so much we still fish up to today But knowing that We had five boys in one bedroom I'm the youngest of five boys. My sister in the other room and my parents in the other room We never had much All we had was love, respect, and make sure that our language and our culture sticks to us. No matter where you go No matter where you go So The other part is I hope, Mr. President that they don't hold this against my parents or myself but because money was a struggle, they took me to the Mayor's office in Saipan and forged a fake ID For me there will be seven years old so I can go to first grade because they couldn't afford babysitter. So bear in mind I just turned five August 6 and all my classmates are about six and a half or almost seven Now did I mention that I was the shortest one from first grade to probably high school? So it figures already right off the head there's some weaknesses And more so, my grandmother who was my first grade teacher So first grade, five years old, barely five Thinking I'm gonna go for grandma. Go to grandma's class But no. She was tricked She spanked me back back then they can spank you fact the principal have paddles Mr. President with holes on it That was Saipan's way of making sure that you don't come back. But anyways So Yeah, I got my share Rest her soul. My grandmother was very strict on me. She would spank me She will push me she would get upset of me when I don't do as good as the other student Now at the end of the school year I asked her [In Chamorro] You know I asked my grandma, "Do you love me? or "Why do you always spank me? Do you not love me?" She looked at me and said, "Cause I want you to be as good as the other student." I want you to work hard just like everybody else And when I told her that I was only 5 years old That's when it hit her. But that didn't stopped her from telling me that, "Well you may be young but I still want you to do good." Despite all my weaknesses and ladies and gentlemen that brought my personality into shape so fast-forward that now I'm 27 years old. I have one kid married. So one day I turn around Laying down with my my wife and I said, "Love, Um, um I want to run And she looked at me and said, "Run to where?" And I said, "Well run for House of Representative." So after a while we talked about it and she said, "Are you sure this is something you want?" [In Chamorro] yes Then she said, "Then I'll walk every street with you if this is what you want." Ladies and gentlemen, my beautiful wife Diane Torres Who by the way is also a proud alumni of UOG Well Mr. President, after that I took her to Boise where she got her Master's degree at Boise State but a proud alumna of of um UOG So after being um Endorsed by the party Two months later, now mind you again I'm 27 years old. Wanna go into this political arena which I've never had anything, let alone want to speak in front of people But I wanted to make changes. I want to make changes for our children, for our land, for our culture, our language This is what we are, who we are. This is what tourists come to our island is to see our language, the food, our culture. That's what we value. And so, two months later during the election or the campaign nothing was moving Zero. And I got a phone call from my brothers. I have three brothers that are attorneys. I have a sister that's younger me That is also an attorney so when they call and they say [In Chamorro] You know that's serious stuff right? It's not one of those loving call so as I driving over to the farm I got there and just three, my three brothers are there. I got down, sat down, and they looked at me and said .. Do you, do you. How, how serious are you in this election? And I said, "I'm very serious." "Do you want to win?" and I said, "Uh yeah." Because how much work are you willing to put into it? Uh everything Again right? You have no idea what what's stored for me But what they said was this They told me That they are not going to put in any work on my behalf unless I If, if I am not willing to work harder, longer, and more passionate than them It was an important lesson That you have to be your own greatest advocate That you cannot expect others to fight harder for you than what you're willing to fight for yourself And Mr. President and class My wife and I we walked every street on our precinct because if I don't I know I was gonna regret it for the rest of my life because I did not give my hundred percent The result we don't know that but I do know the effort that we put into is as close as what we can get. And I hope that these two stories that I have that I share with you hopefully might help some of you at least one But then let also that life is not always going to be fair There will be times where you'll be weaker than those around you. There may be reasons that's not your own. In those situations you have only one option. Own your own weaknesses Learn what they are and make each weakness your next area of growth. You cannot just be a victim of life's challenges. Because they will beat you down. Especially if you start hearing all the criticisms They surely will bring you down but you will not let it happen. Know what you want out of life and use all your strength Use all of your weaknesses and fight as hard as you can to reach them. Because again, no one will fight harder than you And if we take this to a different context or in a larger context, both Guam and the CNMI suffer from limitations that we cannot control. We are limited on size, isolated by geography, and struggle to find adequate voice in a large federal system. Additionally, we have a complex history in our relation between the two territories But there is also an opportunity in these limitations In the long history of our relationship, our similarities have always far outweighed our differences The path forward for me is to harness those similarities to strengthen our voice fight for the grounds we both have in common and witness what can we expand across the ocean that divide us That is why I've worked over the several months with Governor Calvo Whether its H-2b visa or our issue CW and also members of the [In Chamorro] Senators like Will Castro to institute a regional working group for the Marianas That will work on these issues with mutual concern to generate mutual benefit And I hope to continue this effort and build up on it to strengthen those ties that bind our islands together. The possibilities are there. And there always have been. But it is putting in the work to realize those possibilities We share an island chain, a culture, a history. And if we fight for it We can also share in a future of prosperity for the Marianas as a as a as a whole as one. So graduates, I know probably at the end of the day you're not going to remember me because it's one of those commencement speakers But one thing I want to get out of this today, Mr. President is this Do what you want to do And work as hard as you can Because you have families and friends will support you Congratulation Chase your dreams and don't let anyone tell you your shortcomings or your weaknesses I've been told you're too young You're too young You're too young It is an opportunity that each one of us are seeking for and when you have that opportunity, take it. Because you may not become, it may not be there again. Make sure you take that opportunity and prove everyone that you are and you can do it. Mr. President [In Chamorro]

Contents

Background and personal life

Torres graduated from Boise High School in 1996. He received a BS in Political Science from Boise State University in 2001.[2] In 2004, he began to work with his brother at Torres Brothers, Attorneys at Law.

Torres has six children with his wife, the former Diann Mendiola Tudela: Ralph Anthony, Vaniqa Marie, Deon Titus, Tristan Dane, Divannie and Ryan.[2] Torres is of Chamorro ancestry.

Political career

Commonwealth Legislature

In 2008, Torres won the election to the Northern Mariana Islands House of Representatives. In 2010, he won the election to the Northern Mariana Islands Senate, acting in a variety of roles. From 2010 to 2015 he was Chairman of the Health & Welfare Committee. In February 2013, he became the President of the Senate.[2]

Lieutenant Governorship

As half of the winning ticket in the 2014 gubernatorial election,[1] Torres became Lieutenant Governor on January 12, 2015.

Governorship

Upon the death of incumbent Governor Eloy Inos, Torres became the Governor of the Northern Mariana Islands on December 29, 2015.[3][4] In accordance with the constitution, the Senate president, Victor Hocog, became Lieutenant Governor.[5]

Torres approved a bill, public law 19-42, that adds a $1,000 excise tax on pistol purchases, this is the highest tax on pistols sales in the US.[6] However this excessive tax was later ruled as unconstitutional according to the United States Constitution and over turned by the United States District Court.[7]

In February 2018, Bloomberg Businessweek reported that Torres and his family have received millions of dollars in payments from Hong Kong-based Imperial Pacific casino.[8]

In November 2019 the Northern Mariana Islands House of Representatives called for the impeachment of Torres amid an ongoing investigation by the FBI into his businesses.[9]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "Commonwealth Election Commission - Election 2014 Results". Archived from the original on November 30, 2014. Retrieved 3 May 2015.CS1 maint: unfit url (link)
  2. ^ a b c "Ralph DLG. Torres biography". Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Governor's Office. Archived from the original on July 28, 2016. Retrieved October 15, 2015.
  3. ^ Rabago, Mark (29 December 2015). "Gov. Eloy Inos Passes Away". Saipan Tribune. Retrieved 29 December 2015.
  4. ^ Manglona, Thomas (29 December 2015). "CNMI Governor Eloy Inos Dies". Pacific News Center. Archived from the original on 1 January 2016. Retrieved 28 December 2015.
  5. ^ New governor, lt. governor sworn in Marianas Variety December 29, 2015
  6. ^ Kartch, John (April 18, 2016). "$1,000 Gun Tax Pushed as 'Role Model' for States". Americans for Tax Reform. Retrieved January 7, 2017.
  7. ^ Dumat-ol Daleno, Gaynor. "Federal judge shoots down CNMI gun restrictions". Pacific Daily News. Retrieved November 21, 2019.
  8. ^ Campbell, Matthew (February 15, 2018). "A Chinese Casino Has Conquered a Piece of America". Bloomberg Businessweek. Archived from the original on February 16, 2018. Retrieved March 15, 2018.
  9. ^ "Call for impeachment of CNMI governor". Radio New Zealand. 19 November 2019. Retrieved 19 November 2019.
Political offices
Preceded by
Jude Hofschneider
Lieutenant Governor of the Northern Mariana Islands
2015
Succeeded by
Victor Hocog
Preceded by
Eloy Inos
Governor of the Northern Mariana Islands
2015–present
Incumbent
Party political offices
Preceded by
Eloy Inos
Republican nominee for Governor of the Northern Mariana Islands
2018
Most recent
This page was last edited on 23 November 2019, at 06:26
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