State Rep. Sal Pace was elected in 2008 to represent House District 46 in Pueblo. He made such a strong impression that in only two years, his fellow Democrats made him minority leader, the top-ranking Democrat in the state House of Representatives. He left his post as Minority Leader in Fall of 2011. He is a member of the Local Government Committee.
Rep. Pace sponsored several significant bills in his first session in 2009, including the Pinon Canyon Protection Act, which created new safeguards for ranchers in southeastern Colorado who fear forced removal from their land to make way for the Army’s planned expansion of a maneuver site that’s part of Fort Carson. He also sponsored two substantial water bills, including creating the Fountain Creek Watershed District, to address flood control and water quality along the waterway linking Colorado Springs and Pueblo.
In 2009, 5280 magazine named him one of the Top Freshmen to Watch. The popular political website Coloradopols.com named him aFreshman of the Year, and its readers voted him the second best legislator in the entire General Assembly – as a freshman!
Pace worked on behalf of Southern Colorado for close to decade before becoming a state representative. Before running for office himself, he served as director of U.S. Congressman John Salazar’s district offices across the state. In that capacity, Pace managed issues dear to Southern Colorado, including water, education, health care, job creation, transportation, Pinon Canon, renewable energy and economic development. He also worked as an aide in the Colorado House and was an organizer for Enable America, empowering the disabled community.
Rep. Pace has a master’s degree in American political theory from Louisiana State University and a bachelor’s from Fort Lewis College in Durango, where he majored in political science and was active in student government. He is an adjunct professor at Colorado State University-Pueblo and was a professor of American Government at Pueblo Community College.
He is a member of the Sons of Italy of Southern Colorado; the Knights of Columbus; La Famiglia, a Pueblo Italian organization; the Pueblo Chicano Democratic Caucus; the Pueblo Latino Chamber of Commerce; and the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart Parish.
Rep. Pace and his wife, Marlene Valdez Pace, live in central Pueblo with their three small children, Wyatt, Carlo and Alana.