Maria C. Sanchez (1926-1989)
First Hispanic woman elected to the Connecticut legislature (Inducted 1994)
Maria Clemencia Colón Sanchez served as advocate, listener and mentor in her community. She advocated for bilingual education in public schools and served on the Hartford Board of Education. In 1988, she became the first Hispanic woman elected to the Connecticut General Assembly. She opened her own storefront, “Maria’s News Stand,” on Albany Avenue, which doubled as an office space for much of her political work. By the late 1950s, the storefront served as a home base for the political work of the Puerto Rican community. In 1971, along with Edna Negron Rosario, Sanchez led the fight for mandatory bilingual education in Hartford. The former Maria's News Stand was located at 238 Albany Avenue in Hartford.
The Connecticut Women's Hall of Fame Historic Site Survey project was funded through generous grants from: