Congressman Solomon P. Ortiz announced recently that Leslie Tisdale of Corpus Christi, Texas, was selected by a panel of judges in South Texas and appointed by Speaker Nancy Pelosi to participate in the United States Congressional Page Program.

This chance of a lifetime required a candidate be: 16 years old, a junior in high school, in good physical health, and have a 3.0 GPA.

Thirteen South Texans who met those qualifications were judged by: Angela Burton, Brownsville Chamber of Commerce; Claudia Jackson, Del Mar College; Dick Messbarger, Kingsville Chamber of Commerce; and Ben Reyna, University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College.

"Pages for the House of Representatives have the ultimate chance of a lifetime for a firsthand look inside the Halls of Congress, and the House Chamber, where debates are held, votes are called, and laws are made," Ortiz said.

"The education the pages get here is equivalent to a college education in the field of government, people and life. The people Leslie will meet here will be the movers and shakers in the country for the rest of her life. Washington is an exciting place and every page who leaves the program here tells us the experience profoundly changed their life."

Tisdale's grades, assistance with tutoring, and active participation in school activities placed her with the highest score.

She is a junior at Carroll High School and is involved in the following school organizations: National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Mock Trial, Rotary Club, Junior Statesman of America, and the Gulf Coast Humane Society.

"I want to thank all the applicants who submitted applications for this life-time opportunity," Ortiz said. "It was a huge undertaking on their behalf to obtain all the documents required as well as their parents' permission. Know that each young person who applied is an exceptional candidate and will be a future leader in South Texas. I am grateful to the judges who took the time to evaluate these young people and selected Tisdale. I am sure judges were faced with a tough task, given the amount of young talented people that applied."

The summer session for the United States Congressional Page Program begins on Sunday, June 7 and ends on Saturday, June 27.