2020 – 2021 Latina Leaders Awards – Twelve inspiring and influential Latina Leaders will be honored at the 2021 Women Entrepreneurs Empowerment Summit in a hybrid awards ceremony streaming Live from New York City, June 10th at 6:00 PM EDT.
With THRIVE! as our motto this year, the 2021 Women Entrepreneurs Empowerment Summit (#2021 WEES) will center on key areas of growth to connect and empower women business owners with tools and insights that will propel business owners and entrepreneurs forward to THRIVE in the “new normal.”
The event will feature inspiring guest speakers, various panels with industry leaders, and deep-dive workshops, as well as our signature peer-to-peer networking sessions and post-panel discussion forums.
The hybrid event takes place on June 10, 2021 from 1:30pm to 6:30pm in a Virtual Space, followed by the Latina Leaders Awards ceremony from 6:00pm to 8:00pm at Berkeley College’s Mid-Manhattan Campus (by invitation only).
Register now at https://2021wees.eventbrite.com/
2020 – 2021 Latina Leaders’ Awards
This year, we are honoring 12 Latina Leaders from the past year who have been inspirations to us all as entrepreneurs, business owners, and career driven women. Read on to learn a little bit about these influential leaders and check out their full stories here on Latinas in Business!
Leader of May: Alicia Puig
Alicia Puig is the CEO and co-founder of the digital art gallery PxP Contemporary, Director of Business Operations for Create! Magazine, an arts writer, co-author of the book The Complete Smartist Guide, and a regular guest host of The Create! Podcast. She has worked in the arts industry for over ten years both in the US and abroad. Alicia and co-founder, Ekaterina Popova, created PxP Contemporary as a fully digital art gallery and platform that connects collectors with high-quality, affordable artworks. The idea behind PxP was to create a platform that challenges the traditional art gallery model and make the process of buying art a more accessible, digital-friendly experience for both artists and art-lovers.
Leader of June: Albania Rosario
Albania Rosario is the CEO and founder of Fashion Designers of Latin America (FDLA), entrepreneur, and Latinas in Business Executive Board Member. Through FDLA, Albania has brought Latin American designers to the world stage at New York Fashion Week and around the world. In 2020, Albania inspired innovation when FDLA went virtual for the first time for New York Fashion Week in a dynamic digital show that blended streaming and interactive media for a unique digital experience. The same year, Albania launched the fundraising project, “Las Caras Detrás De La Moda En Latino América,” which shined a spotlight on the stories of artists and designers during the pandemic.
Leader of July: Veronica Sosa
Veronica Sosa is an award-winning International Speaker, Relational Capital Expert, author and entrepreneur. She is a mother, mentor, coach, and publisher and founder of Business Fit International, Business Fit Magazine, and SHE (Seminar and Society for Hispanic Entrepreneurs). Through her various ventures, Veronica is working to help lead Hispanic women entrepreneurs on their professional journeys toward greatness and success. SHE is the first community of its kind in central Europe that brings together like-minded Hispanic women and offers resources, community, mentorship, and special events that help women build their skills as entrepreneurs and business owners and achieve their dreams.
Leader of August: Jessica Asencio
We celebrate the life of Jessica Asencio, who was a Diversity & Inclusion leader at JPMorgan Chase where she was recognized as a Diversity Champion. Jessica was also the founder of the Latino Networks Coalition (LNC). Born in Ecuador and raised in Brooklyn, NYC, Jessica dedicated her life to supporting Latino-Hispanic causes and uplifting their voices in the workplace. Jessica is remembered by friends, family, and colleagues as an extraordinary and passionate leader who left a lasting impact on everyone she met, and a leader who led by example with optimism, strength, devotion, and focus. She is greatly missed but never forgotten.
Leader of September: Beth Marmolejos
Beth Marmolejos is a business leader, activist, and advocate who strives toward serving as a champion for change daily in both her personal and professional life. Beth serves on numerous boards that support and serve women and minority communities. Some of her positions include Madame Chair of the Passaic County Workforce Investment Board, Chair of the Passaic County Advocacy and Abilities Committee and Diversity & Inclusion Chair of the American Association of University Women – Greater Wayne Area, and President of the New Jersey Prospanica Chapter, formerly known as The National Society of Hispanics MBAs. She also currently serves as Latinas in Business’ Programs and Events Coordinator & Vice President.
Leader of October: Maria Elena Salinas
Maria Elena Salinas is an award-winning journalist, news anchor, and author. Called the “Voice of Hispanic America” by The New York Times, Salinas is one of the most recognized Hispanic female journalists in the United States. In a career that spans nearly four decades, Salinas has interviewed world leaders and covered virtually every major national and international news event of our time. Her work has earned the top awards presented in broadcasting, including multiple Emmys, a Peabody, Gracie Awards, the Edward R. Murrow Award and the Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism.
Leader of November: Maria Piastre
Maria Piastre is the President of Metallix Refining Inc. Maria came to Metallix Refining in 2006 and soon rose through the ranks in the company and in 2017, after only 12 years working in the male-dominated industry, Maria Piastre was appointed company President, a surprising yet humbling experience. As President, Maria brings to the position a new generation of values that transcends gender and instead is based in learning and reward based on individual merit. Her story is an inspiration to Latinas everywhere that there are no limits to what we can achieve.
Leader of December: Mariela Dabbah
Mariela Dabbah is the founder and CEO of the Red Shoe Movement (RSM), a TEDx and International speaker, award-winning, best-selling author and go-to corporate authority for Fortune 500 companies interested in inclusive cultures. Through the Red Shoe Movement, Mariela champions for gender equality and inclusion in the workplace with efforts such as the popular awareness campaign known as Red Shoe Tuesday, which invites everyone to wear their red shoes and ties to work every Tuesday to show support for women’s career advancement and success.
Leader of January: Claudia Vazquez
Claudia Vazquez is a bilingual and bicultural Latina Leader with over 20 years experience in the insurance and benefits industry. In her work she is dedicated to diversity and inclusion, education, and uplifting the voices of women and Hispanics in the marketplace. Currently he serves as a Director of Product Management within Prudential’s Group Insurance Customer Solutions Unit where she leads the Business Resolution Team. In addition to her work at Prudential, she also serves as a Board Trustee of BRICK – Achieve Community Charter School, which services elementary children.
Leader of February: Maria Elena Noel-Vaeza
Maria Elena Noel-Vaeza is the Regional Director of UN Women for the Americas and the Caribbean. A Uruguayan native, she holds a doctorate in Law and Social Sciences from the University of the Republic of Uruguay and a master’s degree in public policy from John Hopkins University in Washington DC. Prior to this role, Maria-Noel served as Director of the Program Division at UN Women headquarters in New York. She has also served as Political Counselor at the Uruguayan Embassy in Washington DC and delegate to the United Nations General Assembly.
Leader of March: Damaris Diaz
Damaris Diaz is an accomplished multicultural and bi-lingual Marketing Media Professional, broadcast correspondent, and TV personality. She appears on Univision’s national morning show, Despierta America, where she focuses on entertainment, promotional movie features, fitness, and unique human interest stories. Damaris has received two Emmy nominations and many special recognitions from diverse organizations. Throughout her career, Damaris has interviewed a long list of Hollywood stars such as Mick Jagger, Sandra Bullock, Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro, Sylvester Stallone, and Rita Moreno as well as world-renowned singers/performers like Marc Anthony and Celia Cruz among others.
2021 Small Business Champion Award
Wendy Garcia is a skilled leader and champion for small businesses. Currently she serves as the Chief Diversity Officer for the Office of the New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer. As Chief Diversity Officer, Wendy Garcia is responsible for increasing contracting opportunities for Women- and Minority-owned Business Enterprises (MWBEs) and managing the Comptroller Office’s internal supplier diversity initiative, as well as other diversity related projects across all bureaus of the agency. Wendy also leads the Comptroller’s Advisory Council on Economic Growth through Diversity and Inclusion – a group of national, local, corporate, and government experts seeking to increase supplier diversity in the public and private sectors.
Don’t miss out on this must-attend event for all entrepreneurs, business owners, and career driven professionals. Register Today!