TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – Almost 19 months after Gov. Chris Christie nominated him, Martin Perez has taken his place as the newest member of the Rutgers University Board of Governors.

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The civil rights activist is the first Latino to hold that post.

“Thank you for this opportunity,” Perez said on Wednesday. “It is humbling experience, this situation.”

The governor’s appointment of the first Latino to board came by way of a deal he struck during the school’s merger with UMDNJ.

It was held up by State Senate Democrats.

“I am tired of their obstructionist conduct,” Christie said.

“We have to bring more transparency and more collaboration to politics,” Perez.

Perez said he’s proud to be in his position, looking like so many of Rutgers’ minority students.

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