RICHMOND, Va. - Former Virginia Beach prosecutor and former Hampton Roads Del. Jason Miyares has a lot he wants to tackle as the new attorney general. Two of his top priorities: An investigation into the state's parole board and increased consumer fraud protection.
As he prepares to take his oath Saturday afternoon, he reflects on one special person who will have a front row seat - his mom, who decades ago fled Cuba. She's had a tremendous impact on his life and is eager to witness history.
It was back in 2015 when Miyares became the first Cuban American ever elected to the General Assembly, and now, he's poised to make history again as the first Latino as the state's top lawyer.
"It's going to be pretty momentous. I'm the first child of an immigrant ever elected to any statewide office in Virginia. It's not lost on me that 56 years after my mother fled a country with no respect for the rule of law, no bill of rights, no constitution as we know it, that she gets to sit on the Portico of Mr. Jefferson's Capitol and see her son become the top lawyer for the state. I think it's a momentous moment," Miyares told News 3 anchor Kurt Williams.
The story of Miyares' mom fleeing Cuba decades ago has had a profound impact on him.
"In every way - you know, I tell my daughters all the time that gratitude is one of the most underrated of all human traits, and I get that from my mother. I was raised every day to breathe air as a free American, to appreciate that. I live in a country where no one is going to knock on my door in the middle of the night and take me away, and my mother saw that in Cuba. She fled Cuba as a scared, penniless, homeless 19-year-old teenager, not knowing where her next meal was going to come from, and she was desperate to get to the United States," he said.
Miyares says he has a lot of family members in town, many up from Miami to witnessing his historic swearing-in ceremony.