Former City Council President Gladys Santiago dies

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Former Council President Gladys Santiago has died.

The community leader and advocate was a trailblazer in the Hispanic community, serving in the city council from 1996 to 2009.

Under her leadership, projects such as the International Plaza were completed.

She’s being remembered as a tireless advocate for civil rights, language access, and ensuring equity.

Mayor Evans released the following statement:

"I was especially saddened to learn of the passing of Gladys Santiago. We forever share the bond of both having served as Presidents of our respective bodies at the same time. While serving as School Board President, I worked with Gladys on many issues, including on working on improving the relationship between the City and the school district and getting the first phase of the Facilities Modernization Project off the ground. Gladys always gave me words of encouragement and was an early supporter of my entry into public service. Gladys was the epitome of what a City Councilmember should be, rising to become Council President in 2008. She cared deeply about people and the neighborhoods they lived in, and dedicated her career to lifting people out of poverty and addressing crime and substance abuse. She will be remembered forever for her relentless advocacy for Rochester’s Latino community. I am glad that she got to see her 40-year quest to see La Marketa become a reality. I send my condolences to her family and pray for their comfort in the coming days."