Congratulations to Woodrow Wilson School alum, Eduardo Bhatia '86, who was sworn in as the 15th President of the Senate of Puerto Rico on January 14, 2013.
Public service has been a hallmark of Bhatia’s career. His post-Princeton studies took him to Stanford Law School where he earned his J.D. degree in 1990. After graduating from Stanford, Bhatia worked for a year as a judicial officer for the federal First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston, and moved on to become the chief of staff for the Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico in Washington, DC.
In 1996, at the age of 32, Bhatia was elected Senator at Large by the Popular Democratic Party (PPD), becoming the youngest Puerto Rican senator in that four year term and one of the youngest in the history of the Senate of Puerto Rico. He served one Senate term before going on run for mayor of San Juan in both 2000 and 2004, ultimately losing both races. During this time he also served as an attorney in private practice and also taught at the University of Puerto Rico’s School of Law, and was involved in local community efforts.
In 2005, Bhatia returned to public service, having been named by the governor as executive director of the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration in Washington. Bhatia’s duties included representing the governor on matters before state and federal agencies as well as before Congress and the Executive branch.
Bhatia returned to elected political office in 2008, once again securing a Senate seat. He was reelected in 2012 and was the PPD’s candidate for the Senate with the most votes.
On becoming president of the Senate, Bhatia said that his focus would be to “combat poverty to create a new middle class.”
Bhatia served as a member of the Woodrow Wilson School’s Advisory Council from 1998 to 2007.