Spotlight on Commerce: Aaron Trujillo, Associate Director For Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs


Image(s) included
Post a comment
Aaron Trujillo, Associate Director for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs, Department of Commerce

Ed. note: This post is part of the Spotlight on Commerce series highlighting members of the Department of Commerce and their contributions to an Economy Built to Last in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month

Guest blog post by Aaron Trujillo, Associate Director for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs, Department of Commerce

As the Associate Director for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs at the Department of Commerce, I carry two responsibilities; handling the issues of Economic Development, Skills Development, and Manufacturing and serving as the Acting Senior Advisor for Native American Affairs Policy. The Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs (OLIA) supports the Secretary on all matters pertaining to the Department’s relationship with Congress, state/local elected officials, territorial and tribal governments.    

Before coming to Commerce, I worked in the U.S. House of Representatives for five and a half years. There I served a Member of Congress in his capacity on the House Natural Resources Committee as Ranking Member of the Indian and Alaska Native Affairs Subcommittee, and later, as a distinguished member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. During my time in the U.S. House, I also served as Senior Policy Advisor on Rural Development, Energy, Environment, Natural Resources, Agriculture, Veterans Affairs and Native American Affairs policies.

While working here at the Department of Commerce, I have been given the great opportunity to utilize my expertise to assist the Department and the Administration in advancing initiatives to build a stronger American economy. Our work here at the Department truly embodies the notions of opportunity, action and optimism because we work daily with businesses, organizations, community leaders, and elected officials at the local and national level to find opportunities that will create the conditions for economic success. 

I was raised in El Rancho, New Mexico, a small farming community just north of Santa Fe, NM.  As a child, I was influenced by the time honored traditions of my rural community and developed a deep respect for diversity in culture, language and the inherent connection between agricultural communities and natural resources. My upbringing has always been a driving force behind my work and advocacy in government.

That’s why I am currently a member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Mentorship Program, designed to mentor aspiring interns, fellows and young professionals navigate the complexities of government as well as the professional world. I am also the founder of the Hispanic Professionals Network (HPN), an organization dedicated to connecting Hispanic professionals across occupations and promoting diversity in government and in the private sector. 

For me, Hispanic Heritage Month is about two things: celebrating the contributions of Hispanic American’s throughout the history of our nation, and recognizing the potential of the Hispanic community to impact the future of this dynamic country we share with people of all races. I believe the experiment of American democracy can only work if we are willing to participate. The American Dream provides us all the opportunity to step up and contribute to our collective success. Hispanic Heritage Month is a reflection of those who have seized that opportunity and should serve as an example to present and future generations that anything is possible, even in the face of opposition.

As a Presidential Appointee, I realize I have a limited amount of time to contribute to the success of the Department of Commerce. I come to work knowing that what I accomplish each day is merely a paragraph in a much larger book. But I also realize, that even the smallest job here at the Department adds value to the success of all others.  If I could offer advice to anyone at the Department or seeking a career here, I would tell them that no chapter is complete without the contribution of your paragraph, and no book is complete without the chapter to which you have contributed. Get to writing!

Related content

Last updated: 2015-09-16 14:26

Bureaus & Offices