The Buenos Aires PRO presented this Thursday the pre-candidates for the 2023 elections that came out of the Open Lists call, the contest for people without previous experience to run for elective positions in the City of Buenos Aires. Four of them, including an 18-year-old boy, will integrate lists of legislators, while the rest will go for positions in the communes.
The presidential candidate Horacio Rodríguez Larreta and the candidate to replace him as the head of the Buenos Aires Government Jorge Macri led the act with which they confirmed the finalists of the contest that they launched a year ago. They were accompanied by Emmanuel Ferrario, 1st Vice President of the City Legislature, who was the visible face of the selection process that took place under the slogan “Would you vote for yourself?”
Participants had to meet three requirements: not have prior political experience, have a clean criminal record, and meet the constitutional guidelines to be part of the 2023 elections.
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“We have 34 new voices that were prepared to do things well, that come to oxygenate the debate, and that are going to help us represent all Buenos Aires much better,” said Rodríguez Larreta. For his part, Jorge Macri said: “We believe in the participation of good people in politics, which is why the spirit that the PRO brought to politics is so important, which is to be a bridge between commitment and great responsibilities.”
Ferrario preferred to highlight the process of “empowerment” so that “more people can have opportunities.”
“For this election, we needed to renew the party and politics with new people. It was an enormous satisfaction to see that so many people want to get involved to change things,” added the head of the Buenos Aires Legislature, who was inspired by a similar move that carried on by his French namesake, Emmanuel Macron.
How was the selection process of the PRO candidates without previous experience?
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Emmanuel Ferrario, First Vice President of the Legislature, was the coordinator of the search for new candidates for the PRO with the “Open Lists” contest.
In the Open Lists contest, 16,400 people signed up. After the selection stages, four pre-candidates for Buenos Aires legislator and 30 for community members were elected. They passed telephone and dynamic interviews. Of those registered via the web, a thousand pre-candidates remained.
The number was reduced to 400 and 200 applicants, who entered the PRO School of Leaders and passed exams and a final group TP.
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Finally, only 34 participants bypassed all the filters and will be present in the darkroom.
Among those chosen, professionals predominate, with Medicine, Journalism and Teaching as recurring careers. There are also students, entrepreneurs, a Silicon Valley worker, a Cuban exile and a Falklands War veteran.
One by one, who are the candidates from the Open Lists
Rodrigo Pimentel (54), Abigail Contreiras (21), Facundo Piancino (18) and María José Romaris (36) will compete to enter the Legislature.
Pimentel is an intensive care doctor. According to his LinkedIn CV, he worked at the Argerich Hospital and is currently at Fernández. In parallel, he runs two of his own businesses: an equine therapy school and a health services firm.
In April 2020, with the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, he was appointed by the Buenos Aires Government as one of the doctors who, through the Transitional Physicians Plant, reinforced the public health system in the City.
Some of the Buenos Aires PRO candidates who came out of Open Lists.
Romaris also trained in Medicine. She is a pediatrician at Hospital Garrahan, a professor of Histology at the University of Buenos Aires and a clinical researcher with a postgraduate degree from Harvard.
During the debate on the legal interruption of pregnancy, she spoke on her networks as a “defender of life”. “I say no to abortion,” she printed herself over a personal portrait of herself. She is the mother of three children.
He said that the impulse to present himself was because “a lot of friends were going to live in other countries” in the midst of the Argentine crisis. Her husband played a key role: it was he who convinced her to apply.
María José Romaris, pre-candidate for Buenos Aires legislator of the PRO.
Younger are Contreiras and Piancino.
She has a degree in Political Science and Government from Torcuato Di Tella University. She currently works in the journalistic medium ElDiarioAR.
Abigail Contreiras, candidate for PRO legislator.
In addition, he was Data Collector in Oxford, where he addressed the management of the US government in the midst of a pandemic. Although he has no previous political experience, he already had a glimpse of parliamentary work: at that time marked by Covid, he also took the BA Legisla Course, which teaches Buenos Aires legislative work.
Meanwhile, Piancino is the youngest of the contest. At the age of 18 he studies Political Science at the UBA. He plays the piano.
Some of the Buenos Aires PRO candidates who came out of Open Lists.
He has already anticipated that his first projects will be on the integration of low-income people into the educational system. “Equalize the playing field so that later it is meritocracy and effort,” she anticipated before knowing the final result of the contest.
The other age extreme, already among the pre-candidates for community members, is occupied by Hector Muñoz.
Aged 65, the PRO defines him as a “teacher of teachers.” During his career, he completed several postgraduate degrees in the field, including a doctorate in educational philosophy. He has six children.
Omar Brunner, a veteran of the Falklands War, was selected as a pre-candidate for a PRO community member by Open Lists.
Close behind is Omar Brunner, 61. He works as a business consultant. He is a veteran of the Falklands War. “Ex-combatant, lover of life, my country, family and San Lorenzo. I came back from the war, I was a soldier, I studied, I worked, I started a family… I keep fighting for it,” he defines himself on his social networks.
“Malvinas gave me the opportunity to have gone through extreme situations, where sensations are experienced with such strong intensity that they leave physical and mental marks for life, like tattoos that remind me so much for who, why and what I am in my place”, he expressed in the text “Malvinas, a different perspective”, written on the 25th anniversary of the conflict and later shared among colleagues from the Argentine Naval League.
Omar Brunner, in the Malvinas War. He now he was selected as a candidate for community member of the PRO.
In addition to Contreiras, four other people work in the communication area. Alexandra Zimmer (54) and Soledad Rodríguez Iglesias (40) are journalists and also lawyers. Agustín Mottet (21) studies Communication and Carolina Bustamante (36) works in that area, although focused on digital marketing. Rodríguez Iglesias has also spent more than a decade as a Management Advisor in the City Government, in commune 2 of Recoleta.
Law contributed another six participants to Open Lists. Érica Algañaraz (43) is the first in her family to receive a university degree, Elisa García Menéndez (39) is the mother of two neurodivergent children, María Laura León (42) works as a mediator, Yanina Derbunovich (35) is specialized in environmental law and Marcela Mechoud (46) is also interested in developing local projects on the environment and renewable energy.
In addition, the lawyer Nicolás Varela (31) works in Justice and, like other of his colleagues who came out of the contest, he founded an NGO. In his case, it is for young people from all over Latin America to get involved in public service.
Another non-governmental organization created Roxana Vera (37), who gives trade and job placement workshops in Ciudad Oculta and in the Devoto prison. And Pablo Embón (21 years old) founded an NGO to work in soup kitchens and picnic areas.
Roxana Vera, pre-candidate of the PRO in the City that came out of Open Lists.
Alejandro Maccio (50) works in this line, which is developed in various projects so that sport is a tool for inclusion.
Natalia Sandoval (35) and Marcelo Centurión Nakano (54) provide the artistic quota. She is a producer and he is a psychologist, musician and comedian. “Chelo” Nakano is since April 2018 liaison for Human Capital and Training at the Ministry of Health of the City of Buenos Aires. He had previously had a position as coordinator of Cultural Transformation Projects, in the Buenos Aires Cabinet headquarters.
María del Carmen Martinez (46) also found her professional path in culture, with a story of self-improvement: she is the daughter of illiterate immigrants and today she works as a proofreader. She was a finalist for international teaching awards, her other area of expertise.
Marcelo Centurión Nakano, from the stage and the Buenos Aires government to compete in the 2023 elections for Open Lists.
Natalia Domene (29) is an initial and tertiary level teacher in the City. María Cruz Llorente (49), an English teacher, is also dedicated to teaching.
Laura Álvarez is 46 years old and has a son who, according to the PRO, “is her engine to get involved” for the first time in politics. The young man has features of the autism spectrum and a rare disease. In a similar situation is Flavia Martinez (47).
Natalia Domene, initial and tertiary level teacher. She is now a pre-candidate for the City communes for the PRO, for Open Lists.
“My daughter went through precocious puberty since she was 6 years old, not much was known about this problem. I got involved,” she described. She closely followed the elaboration of the Precocious Puberty bill, which has been half approved by Deputies and awaits the vote of the Senate. “It is a comprehensive program, not only 100% medication coverage, but early detection, comprehensive treatment, and training for those who work with children,” she deepened.
The faces of technology and innovation are Ezequiel Pietracupa (39), Ezequiel Fariña Fernández (35) and Ileana Giri (51). Pietracupa is a technology and e-commerce consultant and IT project evaluator; Fariña Fernández is an engineering manager for a Silicon Valley company; and Giri is an internationalist and advises companies on innovation issues.
Flavia Martínez, pre-candidate of the PRO in the City for Open Lists.
On the list is another internationalist: Bruno Caputo, 28 years old. Meanwhile, Diego Torres (51) has nothing to do with the singer: he works as a real estate developer.
Another experienced in age, but not in politics, is Alejandro Alfano (50). He comes from the Health area. He is an ophthalmological surgeon, he works at the Hospital de Clínicas. In his free time, he leaves the City and carries out medical assistance missions to communities in northern Argentina that do not have access to healthcare.
Alejandro Alfano, one of the pre-candidates for community members for the PRO, left Open Lists.
Santiago del Estero and Chaco were some of their destinations in the missions of the Body & Soul Association. It is made up of dozens of specialists who, with contributions from volunteers collected at fundraising dinners, transport staff and equipment to perform surgeries in situ.
“No one is apolitical. Politics is a good word, it is not a bad word,” he defined a few years ago in an interview with AM 1220. “There is much talk about a rift, about the things that divide us. We must stop focusing on what divides us and focus on what unites us. We are going to realize that the things that unite us are much more than those that separate us,” he added.
Aramis Morales Linares, the Cuban who went into exile in Argentina and is now a candidate for community member for the PRO.
Finally, Aramis Morales Linares (36) arrived in the City 12 years ago. He sought exile from Cuba, where he was principal of a secondary school but from where he had to flee due to political persecution.
In Argentina, he began in telemarketing, he was an assistant in art galleries and more than 10 years ago he positioned himself in the sales area, first in the publishing industry and then in the automotive industry.