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Nelson Landrieu (1949-2019)

October 30, 2019

The Clemente community of artists, arts organizations and staff joins in mourning the passing of one of our founders, Nelson Landrieu, and extends our sympathies to Nelson’s family and all who were touched by his vision.  We honor his impact daily through our own work and are grateful to him for creating this unique institution.
The Clemente Soto Velez Cultural and Educational Center
Helene Blieberg, Interim Executive Director

On behalf of the Board of The Clemente Soto Velez Cultural & Educational Center, we are heartbroken to learn of the passing of one of our founders, Nelson Landrieu. Our thoughts are with his widow Marta Garcia Landrieu, and with all of those whose lives have been touched by his gentleness. Nelson was a beautiful human being, and a visionary, urbane, engaging, compassionate, and committed leader who stood for and fought for our building to be established as a center for arts and culture in a way that was responsive to our surrounding communities. Through many of the changes visited on our center, he provided a steady hand and a calming voice to see us through. He will be mourned and missed by all, though his legacy will live on for all communities served by our building’s programs. Nelson represents a golden age of hope, when the spirit of self-determination was a way forward; when our common spaces were something that you could work to improve for the benefit of all. Especially for Puerto Rican and Latino artists, for whom little was given and at a time and place where they had little power, the ability to find and seize space was this grand opportunity to empower our community. Nelson Landrieu, a working actor, and director originally from Uruguay gave his time and his heart to build a theatre -Teatro LaTEA-, and The Clemente; both of which stand to this day because of his efforts.
We invite all to reflect on Nelson’s wise legacy and vision, as an inspiration for the many challenges and exciting moments that lay ahead. Rest in power. 
Board of Directors, The Clemente
Libertad Guerra, Chair
Linda Griggs, Vice Chair
Patricia Parker, Treasurer
Elena Martinez, Secretary
Michael Goldstein, Director
Christine Licata, Director
Betsy MacLean, Director