Friday, May 24, 2024

Contreras Enters MO Treasurer Race, Would Be First Elected Latino State-Wide

ContrerasFormer State Department diplomat Pat Contreras is seeking to make history in Missouri as the only state-wide elected Latino in that state’s history  in his campaign for Missouri State Treasurer in 2016. Contreras, who prior to his career in the State Department under but the Obama and George W. Bush Administrations, worked as an economist with the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank has made serving the under banked and access to financial education centerpieces of his campaign for a position that manages a portfolio of over $3.5 Billion dollars in state assets.

Asked about the contest Contreras said “I want to be a liaison and provide information to these families, whether it’s a shelter over their head so they can move forward or whether the family wants to buy a car, and what they need to do to build credit history and take out a loan if they need a loan.”

Contreras faces an uphill battle in the ‘Show Me’ State. If he prevails in the democratic primary, he will face two-term Republican Missouri state senator Eric Schmitt. While Governor Jay Nixon, a democrat, has found state-wide success, he remains an outlier in a state that voted for both John McCain and Mitt Romney in 2008 and 2012, respectively.

Eliminating ‘financial dead zones,’ areas of the state without financial and banking institutions, primarily in poor communities, is a top priority for Contreras if elected. He sees access to basic information about banking and the importance of savings accounts and the lessening of a reliance, prominent in the Latino community, on cash-advance and check-cashing centers as a vital step towards improving the economic strength of Latino families.

“For me it’s always been about impact,” Contreras said “Who do I want to help and what is the impact for Missouri?”


NBC News Latino