On June 1 and 2, FLAD is organizing the Legislators’ Dialogue, the annual meeting of elected politicians of Portuguese descent from the state legislatures and the US Congress, for a dialogue with Portuguese policymakers on the bridges between the two countries and on the present and future of Portuguese communities in the United States.

In the seventh year of this initiative – interrupted only by the limitations imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic – FLAD will bring together some 30 American legislators of Portuguese descent.

For two days, we will bring together congressmen and state senators and congressmen from seven states – Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New York, Virginia, Pennsylvania, California, and Hawaii – for a series of meetings with some of Portugal’s leading politicians, such as the President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, João Gomes Cravinho, the Governor of the Bank of Portugal, Mário Centeno, and the former Deputy Prime Minister, Paulo Portas, among others.

The aim of the meeting is to strengthen ties between our community in the United States – one of the pillars of FLAD’s action – in particular among its elected representatives. During two days, the legislators will have the opportunity to contact some outstanding personalities in our society in different sectors.

The program also includes a session that will give an overview of the Portuguese political and electoral system, which participants have shown, year after year, much interest in learning more about, given the differences with the US system. This session will feature a presentation by Marina Costa Lobo, a researcher at the Institute of Social Sciences at the University of Lisbon, followed by a conversation with two young Portuguese politicians, André Moz Caldas and Alexandre Poço.

Portugal’s Ambassador to the US, Francisco Duarte Lopes, and the US Ambassador to Portugal, Randi Charno Levine, will be at the opening session table and will follow some of the sessions throughout the two days.