New Citizens welcomed to US

On the Jan. 21, the Bureau of Land Management and the US Citizenship and Immigration Services gave US citizenship to no fewer than 102 immigrants at Nevada’s Red Rock Canyon, along the formations of what is referred to as Calico Hills.  The ceremony was staged at the National Conservation Area of the BLM Red Rock Canyon in order to welcome the brand-new citizens at one of the most scenic natural landscapes in the whole of the United States, Las Vegas NBC affiliate KSNV reports.

The event took place on Martin Luther King Day, marking the 50th anniversary of his iconic “I have a dream” speech.  The new US citizens were able to live out King’s much-cherished dream of a nation that is multicultural and welcoming in the ceremony where the Oath of Allegiance was administered by Philip M Pro, a US District Court Judge.

Exactly a week before the ceremony, the Pledge of Allegiance was recited by Joanne Tordoff, who was finally granted US citizenship after waiting 14 years for the privilege.  The 42-year-old Aspen Highlands ski instructor grew up in South Africa, and after she and her husband had a child, the family left that country in search of a safer environment in which to raise a child.

Her husband was accepted into a Kentucky blacksmithing school 15 years ago, with the family relocating to Roaring Fork Valley, Co., a year later, where she was taken on as an employee by Aspen Skiing Co, a steady job she believes played a key role in gaining citizenship.