Congressman Garcia Announces Staff Additions to Congressional and District Offices

February 16, 2021
Press Release

CHICAGO, IL - Congressman Jesús “Chuy” García (IL-04), today announced Mike Cusher as his new legislative director in Washington, D.C.,  and Jesús del Toro and María Velázquez as constituency services liaison and outreach director, respectively, in Chicago.

“I am proud to welcome such talented and diverse staff to my team. Their energy and commitment to public service will continue to strengthen the work we do for the people of the Illinois’ 4th Congressional District,” said Congressman García. “Mike, Jesús, and María are an example of young people stepping up to advance a progressive and inclusive agenda.”

In Washington, D.C:

“I am thrilled by the opportunity to work for a Member of Congress with such a rich history in public service,”said Mike Cusher. “Congressman García has dedicated his life to helping others and I am honored to join his office. I’ve had the privilege of working with some incredible leaders and mentors and will bring what I learned from them to help the people of Illinois’ 4th district.”

Prior to joining Congressman García’s office, Cusher worked as the legislative director for the Massachusetts Audubon Society, handling state and federal government affairs for the environmental nonprofit. Mike began his career in community organizing and students’ rights activism at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and went on to work for Congressman James P. McGovern (MA-02) first as an intern and working his way up to the role of senior legislative assistant.

In Chicago:

“It is an honor to join such a passionate team working tirelessly for our communities. I am excited to learn from Congressman García, my colleagues, and our communities to become a better advocate and leader for our district,” said Jesus del Toro.

Before joining “Team Chuy,” del Toro served as a Mayoral Fellow at the City of Chicago while completing a master’s degree from Loyola University. As a fellow he led an action plan to encourage a full and accurate 2020 Census count, convened the first-ever Mayoral Youth Commission, and managed communications for the City’s Sustainability Office. Jesus is a son of immigrants, a first-generation college student, and a member of Lambda Theta Phi Latin Fraternity.

“As a lifelong resident of Illinois’ 4th Congressional district, it is an honor to be part of Congressman García’s dedicated team. My personal mission to connect, serve, and elevate our community is at the core of my work and I look forward to joining an incredible group of leaders,” said María Velazquez.

Velazquez previously served as the program manager of immigrant justice partnerships at The Resurrection Project (TRP) where she supported its statewide program Access to Justice, which seeks to mitigate the devastating consequences of incarceration and deportation. Prior to TRP, Maria led national youth initiatives for the Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement and was an Organizing Fellow with the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR). Maria is the daughter of Mexican immigrants, alumna of the University of Iowa, member of Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority Inc., and currently serves as President of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute Alumni Association’s Chicago Chapter.