Jose Serrano has been in Congress since 1990, but two of his biggest changes since taking office occurred over the last 12 months.
Serrano moved his Bronx operations into a brand new office in the recently renovated BankNote Building in Hunts Point last June, and in February, he named Angela Fernandez his new district chief-of-staff.
“She shares my passion for social and environmental justice and is dedicated to empowering disadvantaged communities,” Serrano said in a statement about the hire. “I am thrilled to have an accomplished lawyer leading our Bronx staff as we continue to serve the people of our great borough.”
Prior to being appointed by Serrano, Fernandez was executive director of the Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights, where she advocated for the city’s immigrants.
“Representative Serrano has an impeccable reputation as an honest and ethical legislator,” Fernandez said in the statement. “And I am truly humbled to have the opportunity to work for such a statesman.”
Fernandez, who is of Dominican heritage, has also written a weekly column for El Diario – La Prensa.
She replaced Paul Lipson, who had been Serrano’s chief of staff since 2004, but left to work in the electric-car industry. Before joining Serrano’s staff he was associate director of the Hunts Point Community Development Corporation.
Serrano moved in to his office in the rehabbed, 102-year-old Bank-Note Building on June 1 of last year. The building is located on Layafette Avenue, east of Bruckner Boulevard.
the former industrial building has since been renovated and refurbished as a commercial space.
Serrano’s office leased a 4,400 square-foot space and his office prior to the new one was previously based out of a temporary location on nearby Dawson Street.
The building is unique, not only because it is a century-old industrial space turned commercial space, but it is the only office building of its size in the Bronx. It is currently about 40 percent filled.
Other tenants include Sunshine Suites business incubator and the FedCap job training program.