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'We have to dream big': Bronx assemblywoman ready for 2019's challenges

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THE BRONX -

A Bronx elected official is breaking barriers as the first woman of Colombian descent to be elected to the state Legislature.

Nathalia Fernandez was inaugurated Saturday as the representative for the Bronx's 80th Assembly District. It's a job she's been doing since she won a special election last April to replace now City Councilman Mark Gjonaj, and she was elected to a full term in November.

MORE: Bronx Politics

The Democratic assemblywoman touts her progressive agenda, and says she's striving to bring change to the criminal justice and education systems.

One of Fernandez's proudest accomplishments so far was securing half a million dollars for Yeshiva University's Parnes Clinc on Morris Park Avenue, which prides itself on offering affordable mental health care services.

Assemblywoman Fernandez says she'll assume office in Albany on Jan. 9, ready to face what she says will be some uphill battles in the 2019 session.

"We have to dream big," Fernandez says.

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