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Latina celebrities

Four Latina celebrities but who is the smartest business woman?

Latina celebrities are building style empires at a staggering rate, including clothing lines, fragrances, lingerie and sporting clothes. Their empires are in the multimillion level; they are starting lasting trends and becoming top influencers in the way women dress, look and smell.

Latina celebrities

Latina celebrities

However, who of these four Latina celebrities is the best entrepreneur? Investing, branding and philanthropy are just some of the ways they are managing their multimillion dollar enterprises.

We follow them, we adore them, and we admire them. They make us proud –most of the time– because we see them as major achievers of our own tribe: smart Latinas. Each has conquered the Hollywood world of fame and glitter in her own right; however, each has also managed their earnings and ventures in a different way.

Jennifer Lopez_280x425 Latina celebrities

Jennifer Lopez

Who of these four Latina celebrities is the best entrepreneur? In my view, entrepreneurship encompasses several aspects of a person’s influence in the world. Producing wealth through creative talent is an important part of who we are as entrepreneurs but wise branding, productive investing, and strong corporate responsibility are also crucial components in being a successful entrepreneur.

Jennifer Lopez  (Jlo’s net worth: $300 million)

Jennifer Lopez launched and promoted her scent Glowing in 2012.  She began designing in 2001, starting with the brand Sweetface Fashion but she has also launched a line of clothing and accessories for Kohl’s department stores that includes dresses, sportswear, handbags and jewelry. According to Forbes, the “actress, singer, dancer, fashion designer, and television producer has a net worth of $300 million. Her career has spanned more than two decades and today she is one of Hollywood’s biggest A-list celebrities.

Lopez’s style and empire have influenced the world. Her  fragrance line has become the most successful line in the world, with record-breaking sales exceeding $2 billion. Lopez has contributed to a number of charitable organizations including Amnesty International, and March of Dimes, among others.

 

Eva Longoria 280x425 Latina celebrities

Eva Longoria

Eva Longoria  (Longoria’s net worth is $35 million)

Longoria, our Latina “desperate housewife,” enrolled the support of the brand L’Oreal to design her line of scent, a bold move since the actress is allergic to most fragrances. An American television and film actress who has a net worth of $35 million dollars, according to Forbes, she was born in 1975 in Corpus Christi, Texas.  She was known for her role as Isabella in The Young and the Restless (CBS) and as Gabrielle Solis on  Desperate Housewives (ABC).

Her commitment to Latino causes and giving back to the community earned her the Philanthropist of the Year award by The Hollywood Reporter. She has fundraised for the Make-A-Wish Foundation and founded Eva’s Heroes, a charity which helps developmentally disabled children in 2006. She is also the national spokesperson for PADRES Contra El Cancer. She is heavily involved in the Friends of the American Latino Museum and the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

 

Sofia Vergara  (Vergara’s net worth is $70 million)

Sofia Vergara, the Colombian born actress, model and spokeswoman has an estimated net worth of $70 million, according to Forbes. Born in 1972 in Barranquilla, Colombia, she is probably most famous for her role as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett on the show Modern Family (ABC).

Sofia Vergara_280x425 Latina celebrities

Sofia Vergara

LatinWe (Latin World Entertainment Holdings Inc.) is a multiservice talent management, marketing, production, endorsement and licensing firm where Hollywood producers go to search for Latino talents. The company, founded by Sofía Vergara and former music promoter Luis Balaguer, has estimated  revenues close to $30 million, mostly based on Vergara’s marketing as an actress and celebrity.

However, she also has deigned a line of clothes, under the slogan “Work what you got” aimed at women who want to feel safe and sexy. The line is sold at Kmart stores, to be accessible to her fans at very reasonable prices.

 

 

Salma Hayek (Networth $85M)

Salma Hayek, Mexican actress Latina celebrities

Salma Hayek

“The 48-year-old original Mexicana beauty has been making a name lately in the business and philanthropy world with her skin-care line Nuance with mass drugstore CVS, which pulls from her own ancestry to come up with beauty ingredients like Tepezcohuite, a tree famed for its restorative properties. She also has partnered with Beyoncé Knowles in launching Chime for Change, which aims to empower women and girls globally. As a Hollywood pioneer and mom of 6-year-old Valentina, Salma continues to inspire year after year,” says Cosmopolitan for Latinas.

And Refinery29 mentions that “Salma’s not your typical Hollywood actress. In 2000, she founded film production company Ventanarosa, through which she produced and starred in Frida, which brought in two Oscars. She went on to executive produce Ugly Betty, the American version of Colombian telenovela Yo soy Betty, la fea, sign a development deal with ABC, and even create her own line of cosmetics and skincare products, Nuance, inspired by her grandmother’s homemade concoctions.

“Besides being our favorite guest character on 30 Rock, Hayek has worked tirelessly with UNICEF to stop the spread of tetanus to children, and she’s made contributions to prevent violence against women and discrimination, netting a stack of awards for her assistance.

“On top of being an A-list activist actress and business woman, Salma also co-founded and helped create recipes for Cooler Cleanse, sold at Juice Generation shops all throughout New York City. Looks like she was waaay into juicing before the rest of us.”

So in your view, which of these Latina celebrities is the smartest business woman and why? Are branding, design, influence, charitable work and community responsibility important features of a smart business woman?

 

 

 

Latina Buying food at the supermarket

Why Latino economic power is greater than political representation

Despite new reports on the increasing Latino economic power –their buying power, insertion in the labor force, and their role as the backbone of Social Security–, the part Hispanics play in the United States’ political arena is still minimal.

Latina Buying food at the supermarket Latino economic power

Latinas make 85% of purchasing decisions in the home

Latinos are the nation’s second largest and fastest growing population group and electorate; however, we are still behind in representation. The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) reports that 24. 8 million Latinos who are eligible to vote are not registered.

According to a study conducted by the Pew Hispanic Center, Hispanics will account for 75% of the nation’s labor force growth in the next decade. A population that is growing rapidly because of an increasing birth rate and is fed by constant immigration–although lessened in the last two years–, Hispanics in the United States are the labor force of the future.

Latino economic power and labor force

A first reason of this assessment is that the aging baby-boomers’ generation or non-Hispanic population entering Social Security massively will need the younger Latino labor force to carry for millions of their pensions. In addition, the non-Hispanic birthrate is slowing down at an alarming rate. White women are giving birth at a later age and to fewer children.

“A second important factor is that Hispanics have a higher labor force participation rate than other groups. The nation’s labor force participation rate—that is, the share of the population ages 16 and older either employed or looking for work—was 64.7% in 2010. Among Hispanics, the rate was 67.5%. There are two main explanations for this gap: Hispanics are a younger population than other groups, and include a higher share of immigrants”, concludes Rakesh Kochhar.

These figures were extracted from the 2010-2020 BLS projections for the U.S. labor force. The report indicates that growth in America will slow overall, while the rest of the world’ labor force —especially in the Asian markets—is growing at a frantic rate. “Hispanics are expected to add 7.7 million workers to the labor force while the number of non-Hispanic whites in the labor force is projected to decrease by 1.6 million.”

The labor force movement should acknowledge this increased role of Latinos as an opportunity for their political participation in the next decades, and act accordingly.

“Latinos need the freedom to form unions and bargain collectively —which means they need the Employee Free Choice Act,” said Gabriela Lemus, executive director of Progressive Congress. She is the former executive director of the Labor Council of Latin American Advancement, a constituency group of the AFL-CIO & CTW. In 2008, she was elected to serve as Vice-Chair of the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda (NHLA), later becoming chair where she helped to establish progressive policies for the Latino civil rights movement.

Head Shot  Latino economic power

Gabriela Lemus

Latino economic power expected to grow

Although the number of employed Hispanics has increased from its lowest in 2009, Latino economic power is expected to continue growing as the relatively young population is increasing educational opportunities and moving up the social ladder.

By 2020, Latinos are expected to comprise 19 percent of the U.S. labor force. Women comprised 41 percent of all Latinos in the labor force in 2011, compared to 46 percent among the white labor force.

On the other hand, the Selig Center for Economic Growth reports that Latino economic power has gained momentum —as disposable income, or money that is available for spending after taxes—over the past decade at a staggering rate compared to other minorities.

“The Hispanic market alone, at $1 trillion, is larger than the entire economies of all but 14 countries in the world–smaller than the GDP of Canada but larger than the GDP of Indonesia,” Jeffrey M. Humphreys, director of the center, notes.

“The ten states with the largest Hispanic markets, in order, are California ($265 billion), Texas ($176 billion), Florida ($107 billion), New York ($81 billion), Illinois ($44 billion), New Jersey ($39 billion), Arizona ($34 billion), Colorado ($22 billion), New Mexico ($20 billion), and Georgia ($17 billion),” says the report, which brings up the issue of political representation.

What can be done  to encourage those who are not citizens yet to acquire their citizenship, and those who are, to participate in the electoral process? It must be our very first priority if we ever want to achieve economic and political power, and make our voices count.

 

Goffan_Claudia_2small

Havi Goffan the genie behind Target Latino

Claudia "Havi" Goffan, principal at Target Latino

Claudia “Havi” Goffan, principal at Target Latino

The Latino market is an ever evolving moving target that companies aim at with varying results. Finding a tool that would uncover the spending habits of your desired Hispanic audience is almost grabbing the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Target Latino has long developed a methodology to identify Hispanics online independently of their language or level of acculturation.

Because of its bilingual, bicultural and multi-layered nature, Hispanics have been the focus of numerous market research strategies. Following trend after trend, and many times (miss) guided by Hispanic advertising agencies, American companies have tried and erred on their quest to grab and hold this slippery fish.

“However, numbers don’t lie,” said Havi Goffan, multicultural marketing technologist and principal at Target Latino. “Our proprietary technology can identify Hispanics’ online habits –independently of the language they use– to be applied to ad monitoring and ad tracking. We also provide analytics of Hispanic targeted online advertising. Our exclusive intellectual property also allows for segmentation by country of origin, gender and age group,” she explained.

 Who is Claudia “Havi” Goffan? what-is-inbound-marketing-435x1030

An 18-year old curious woman about computers in Argentina few decades ago was not a common occurrence –I know because I am from the “pampas” – but rarer if she was interested in applying computer technology to marketing. Whaaaaat?

“Although I graduated with an MBA from the University of Buenos Aires (UBA), Argentina, and from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), I took my very first information technology class at the University of Buenos Aires back in 1978. I was interested in it not really as a career but as a field that allowed me to master certain tools. I took International Marketing classes concurrently with Artificial Intelligence (AI),” said Havi to LIBizus.

This fascination with business technology and marketing carried her over to the place she is today. An international keynote speaker and expert marketing technologist on culture, inbound marketing, content, SEO and Pinterest strategies, visionary Havi positioned her company around inbound marketing after the upheaval created by the 2000 Census. “It was crazy, every American company wanted to target Latinos,” she said.

She recognized the power of cultural knowledge as one of the pillars, together with technology and business savvy, in capturing the Hispanic market. “Instead of broadcasting a message to a market that might or might not be interested in what you have to offer, you get ready to be found when they are looking for you,” she explained.

Inbound marketing seems simple but we know not everybody can make it to the first page of Google results, much less for the same keyword,” Havi said. And inbound marketing is much more than Search Engine Optimization (SEO), email marketing, and blogging, she shared.

According to Target Latino research, over 42M Hispanics – or more than 65 percent of the U.S. Latino population – are online and 87 percent of user-generated search engine queries click on organic search results.

“Whatever it is that they are looking for, the Internet has changed the way Latinos decide what to buy and who to buy from. There are only 10 places on Google’s first page. It’s not just about language anymore; it is about culture and relevance,” Havi explained.

Here are some stats Havi shared with LIBizus:

  • B2B companies that create content have 67% more leads per month than those who do not. (Social Media B2B)
  • 80% of the people ignore Google paid ads (Search Engine Land)
  • 75% of the online population never go further than the first page of search engines results (Hubspot)
  • People want to be in control of the content they receive: 86% skip commercials, 44% of direct mail goes unopened. (Content Marketing Institute)
  • Articles with images have 94% more views (Content+)
  • Around 60% of the population has a visual style of learning
  • 58% of consumers trust editorial content.

“Companies need to develop everything and anything that will drive the prospect to them when THEY are searching for their products or services. Unfortunately, most companies still don’t get it and continue to practice outbound marketing. And here is one more reason to grasp: According to Search Engine Journal, inbound leads are 60 percent less expensive than outbound leads,” Havi concluded.

She has been recognized as an expert in Latino Marketing by CNN en Español, and featured in CNN, Adweek, AmEx Open Forum, Univision, Telemundo, HuffPo, AARP Viva, Abasto Media, and others.

Codie Baker Sanchez Award

Dr. Sanchez-Baker from human stories to economic empowerment

Codie Baker Sanchez received her Corporate Leader Award from the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Codie Baker Sanchez received her 2014 Corporate Leader Award from the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Searching for accomplished Latinas, back in October I found the announcement of the LA CIMA Awards, a Week of Tribute to Women in Business and Leadership from the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

The “Corporate Leader” award was bestowed to Dr. Codie Ann Sanchez-Baker, a young professional who has climbed the financial corporate ladder with one promise: to be part of a team that can realize change at a bigger scale.

Her story started some years ago, when Codie was still about to graduate from Arizona State University with a BA in Political Science, Public Relations and Journalism. While studying, Codie wrote a series of stories called The Generation Abandoned.

“In Mexico, a high percentage of elderly residents are left behind along the Northern border when the youngest members travel from the south of Mexico and Central America to the USA in search of work. Their families are divided as the elders are not able to make the crossing,” she said. “I learned about their lives and wrote stories to call attention on that matter.”

For such endeavor, Codie received the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. “I was offered incredible jobs, and

Carmelita Gutierrez takes a nap while a nurse visits with other residents at La Divina Providencia in Agua Prieta, Mexico Friday, November 2, 2007. (Photo: Courtney Sargent)

Carmelita Gutierrez takes a nap while a nurse visits with other residents at La Divina Providencia in Agua Prieta, Mexico Friday, November 2, 2007. (Photo: Courtney Sargent)

graduated with honors,” she recalls. “I wrote those stories to give a voice to those who didn’t have one but soon I realized maybe nobody wanted to hear those stories.”

Codie understood that as a journalist, she had little power to achieve real change. “Real power was in money; those who have money have power, and can create massive change if they so choose,” Codie said.

She enrolled in Georgetown University where she earned a Masters in International Business. Soon enough, she was offered a job as a financial analyst at Goldman Sachs, where she was probably not only the youngest woman but for sure the youngest Latina.

“I have been blessed enough to work at some of the best financial firms in the world; from Goldman Sachs to The Vanguard Group, and in roles from Chicago, to Boston, to San Francisco, to Latin America. I achieved much success and ascended rapidly from analyst, to associate, to Vice President, to Director and finally became Director and Head of Institutional Latin America Business for First Trust Portfolios, a $90 billion investment firm, in eight short years. Through this process, I realized it wasn’t only about that south of the border. It was about everyone who was left behind in our corporate world of finance. I made it my mission to understand financial markets, serve my clients, and increase opportunities for minorities in this traditionally male-oriented, homogenous industry,” Codie affirms.

In every position she landed, Codie worked hard at creating opportunities for fellow Latinos. Prior to First Trust and during her tenure at State Street Global Advisors (SSgA) –the world’s largest asset manager with $22 trillion in assets under care–, Codie was appalled at the low number of Latinos in top positions. “As an example, I was a Vice President and probably one of the only Latinas at that level at SSgA. So I created the first ever Latino Recruitment Group at that company and was chosen as their representative and speaker at both national conferences of the Association of Latino Professionals in Financing and Accounting (ALPFA) and the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA),” she recalls.

She has been elected to the board of Dallas’s ALPFA Chapter helping to bring in Fortune 1000 corporate sponsors, so that young Latino members would have a chance at top tier jobs. She is also on the board of the Dallas Association of Financial Professionals (DAFP).

Dr. Codie Ann Sanchez Baker

Dr. Codie Ann Sanchez Baker

“I encourage Latinos to take advantage of the many opportunities available in finances. Companies are constantly looking for diverse talents, and as young professionals we need to advance to positions of responsibility. Sometimes, we see institutions as ‘dirty’ but I truly believe in helping people grow through capitalism and economic development. I believe in a hand up not a hand out. The US is proof that capitalism is not perfect but it is our best solution,” Codie concluded.

 

Dr. Codie Ann Sanchez Baker

Dr. Sanchez-Baker from human stories to economic empowerment

Codie Baker Sanchez received her Corporate Leader Award from the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Codie Baker Sanchez received her 2014 Corporate Leader Award from the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Searching for accomplished Latinas, back in October I found the announcement of the LA CIMA Awards, a Week of Tribute to Women in Business and Leadership from the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

The “Corporate Leader” award was bestowed to Dr. Codie Ann Sanchez-Baker, a young professional who has climbed the financial corporate ladder with one promise: to be part of a team that can realize change at a bigger scale.

Her story started some years ago, when Codie was still about to graduate from Arizona State University with a BA in Political Science, Public Relations and Journalism. While studying, Codie wrote a series of stories called The Generation Abandoned.

“In Mexico, a high percentage of elderly residents are left behind along the Northern border when the youngest members travel from the south of Mexico and Central America to the USA in search of work. Their families are divided as the elders are not able to make the crossing,” she said. “I learned about their lives and wrote stories to call attention on that matter.”

For such endeavor, Codie received the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. “I was offered incredible jobs, and

Carmelita Gutierrez takes a nap while a nurse visits with other residents at La Divina Providencia in Agua Prieta, Mexico Friday, November 2, 2007. (Photo: Courtney Sargent)

Carmelita Gutierrez takes a nap while a nurse visits with other residents at La Divina Providencia in Agua Prieta, Mexico Friday, November 2, 2007. (Photo: Courtney Sargent)

graduated with honors,” she recalls. “I wrote those stories to give a voice to those who didn’t have one but soon I realized maybe nobody wanted to hear those stories.”

Codie understood that as a journalist, she had little power to achieve real change. “Real power was in money; those who have money have power, and can create massive change if they so choose,” Codie said.

She enrolled in Georgetown University and earned a Masters in International Business. Soon enough, she was offered a job as a financial analyst at Goldman Sachs, where she was probably not only the youngest woman but for sure the youngest Latina.

“I have been blessed enough to work at some of the best financial firms in the world; from Goldman Sachs to The Vanguard Group, and in roles from Chicago, to Boston, to San Francisco, to Latin America. I achieved much success and ascended rapidly from analyst, to associate, to Vice President, to Director and finally became Director and Head of Institutional Latin America Business for First Trust Portfolios, a $90 billion investment firm, in eight short years. Through this process, I realized it wasn’t only about that south of the border. It was about everyone who was left behind in our corporate world of finance. I made it my mission to understand financial markets, serve my clients, and increase opportunities for minorities in this traditionally male-oriented, homogenous industry,” Codie affirms.

In every position she landed, Codie worked hard at creating opportunities for fellow Latinos. Prior to First Trust and during her tenure at State Street Global Advisors (SSgA) –the world’s largest asset manager with $22 trillion in assets under care–, Codie was appalled at the low number of Latinos in top positions. “As an example, I was a Vice President and probably one of the only Latinas at that level at SSgA. So I created the first ever Latino Recruitment Group at that company and was chosen as their representative and speaker at both national conferences of the Association of Latino Professionals in Financing and Accounting (ALPFA) and the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA),” she recalls.

She has been elected to the board of Dallas’s ALPFA Chapter helping to bring in Fortune 1000 corporate sponsors, so that young Latino members would have a chance at top tier jobs. She is also on the board of the Dallas Association of Financial Professionals (DAFP).

Dr. Codie Ann Sanchez Baker

Dr. Codie Ann Sanchez Baker

“I encourage Latinos to take advantage of the many opportunities available in finances. Companies are constantly looking for diverse talents, and as young professionals we need to advance to positions of responsibility. Sometimes, we see institutions as ‘dirty’ but I truly believe in helping people grow through capitalism and economic development. I believe in a hand up not a hand out. The US is proof that capitalism is not perfect but it is our best solution,” Codie concluded.

 

culture of poverty Latinos and social security

La cultura de la pobreza, a stigma in minority communities

When I woke up this morning to the elections’ results, I remembered this concept of “la cultura de la pobreza” or culture of poverty, a theory that anthropologist Oscar Lewis developed in the 60s. I am a girl of the 70s, the time when everything seemed possible, and younger people might not remember but back then we gained a lot of terrain in women’s rights, civil rights and human rights.

culture of poverty

The culture of poverty is associated with race, age and gender in the US. (Photo Credit Free Commons)

In his work, Lewis mentioned some seventy characteristics distinctive of the culture of poverty, and he argued that:

“The people in the culture of poverty have a strong feeling of marginality, of helplessness, of dependency, of not belonging. They are like aliens in their own country, convinced that the existing institutions do not serve their interests and needs. Along with this feeling of powerlessness is a widespread feeling of inferiority, of personal unworthiness.”

Among other characteristics, the original theory described poor people as having distrust in institutions –police and government–, as strongly oriented to live in the present, and having little interest in planning their future.

The concept was introduced in American politics by Daniel Patrick Moynihan in 1965, the assistant labor secretary during the Johnson administration, who described the urban black family as incapable of escaping the cycle of poverty, and the makers of their own bad by transmitting those values from one generation to the next. The same has been argued for other sectors of low-income and minority populations.

culture of poverty

Carol B Stack, Emeritus Professor at UC Berkeley (Photo credit UC Berkeley website)

The theory was harshly criticized for blaming the poor for being poor and for developing ways to cope with poverty. Anthropologist Carol B. Stack criticized the theory saying that this explanation was political in nature, and that it served conservative interests.

The truth is, whatever comes first, the egg or the chicken, the American ethos –the belief that freedom includes the opportunity for prosperity and success, and that upward social mobility is only achieved through hard work – has done a good job at reinforcing these ideas. Those who fail to make it have only to blame themselves because they do not make enough effort or they do not take advantage of opportunities.

In addition, large sums spent in pounding these ideas while discouraging people to have a saying only help to continue the status-quo.

Conservative strategies have proven time after time that they do not favor the interests of the working poor. While they continue to oppose decent minimum wages that would help families rise from the claws of poverty, keep undermining the chance for large parts of the immigrant population access to a lawful participation in the working and political life of this country, and avert the access of low-income people to higher education, to public healthcare and to better economic opportunities, the culture of poverty will continue to persist.

Latinas driving The Latino Coalition and LALCC Summit

The Latino Coalition (TLC) and the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce (LALCC) will be hosting the Latina Procurement and Small Business Summit on October 9th, 2014 at the City Club Los Angeles. At the summit, TLC, one of the largest membership and advocacy organizations for Latino-owned small businesses in the country, will be announcing a new partnership agreement with the LALCC, a trade group corporation seeking to organize and unify Latino business owners by advocating and providing improvement member services for small and mid-sized businesses.

Left to right, LALCC Chairman Gilbert Gonzalez; CA Controller John Chiang; and LALCC CEO Theresa Martinez

Left to right, LALCC Chairman Gilbert Gonzalez; CA Controller John Chiang; and LALCC CEO Theresa Martinez

“The LALCC is looking forward to partnering with The Latino Coalition to help surround the small business community with critical information and resources needed to succeed in the entrepreneurial world today,” said Theresa Martinez, CEO, LALCC. “The Latina Procurement & Small Business Summit promises a diverse, experienced and talented group of leaders sharing valuable insight about the world of business, technology and a path to leadership. This will be a very exciting partnership.”

The exclusive one-day summit promises to present an exciting blend of speakers and pioneering entrepreneurs who will discuss ideas and innovations for evolving businesses.

“The Latina Procurement & Small Business Summit will fuel professional development opportunities, as well as provide small business owners with tangible benefits and the tools necessary to succeed,” said Hector Barreto, TLC Chairman and former Administrator to the U.S. Small Business Administration. “Our participants will gain better technology skills, capacity, capital and cost cutting strategies to navigate their current economic challenges.”

The day will focus on the economic influence of women and how they have been opening doors in a competitive workforce by encouraging opportunity. This year’s summit will feature a Latina Purchasing Power presentation by Nielsen and an exciting town hall format with Ibi Fleming, Senior VP and Managing Director of Herbalife North America; Pamela Gibbs, Director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion for the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission; Anna Caballero, Secretary of the California Business Consumer Services and Housing Agency; Jeanette Prenger, President of EccoSelect; and Maria Salinas, Chairwoman of ProAmerica Bank.

TLC BoardM_Jeanette Prenger

TLC Board Member Jeanette Prenger

“In recent years, the number of women-owned businesses in this country has been increasing at a dramatic rate.  From 1997 to 2013, the number of women-owned businesses in the United States increased by 59 percent, significantly outpacing the overall 47 percent growth in business.  These women are not only rising to the top, but they are leveraging professional gains to fulfill their potential and will continue expanding the imprint they have on the economy and our country,” added Barreto.

Knowledgeable speakers, high-impact panels, networking opportunities and related activities will create an interactive environment between industry leaders and government officials. Panels during the conference will spotlight: Latina’s Success in Business, Digital Solutions, Procurement, Energy and Healthcare/Regulations. Sessions with top executives from domestic and global corporations will discuss technologies and strategies to help grow small business, access capital, new opportunities and existing challenges facing the Latino business community.

Featured speakers during the Latina Procurement & Small Business Summit include national business leaders such as: David L. Cohen, Executive VP of Comcast Corp.; Matt Koch, VP of the U.S. Chamber 21st Energy Institute; and John Walls, VP of Public Affairs for CTIA The Wireless Association to name a few.

 

ABOUT THE LATINO COALITION- The Latino Coalition (TLC) was founded in 1995 by a group of Hispanic business owners from across the country to research and develop policies relevant to Latinos. TLC is a non-profit nationwide organization with offices in California, Washington, DC and Guadalajara, Mexico. Established to address policy issues that directly affect the well being of Hispanics in the United States, TLC’s agenda is to develop initiatives and partnerships that will foster economic equivalency and enhance overall business, economic and social development for Latinos.

domestic violence, purple purse

Finances the ugly trap in domestic violence, my story

domestic violence, purple purseSomething I don’t talk about often: I was in a marriage that started great and went wrong, very wrong. I had no control over money, and I had to ask for it even to buy the minimum grocery shopping.

I was a college professor in Argentina, had a large network of family and friends who supported and cared for me, and an independent career as professional architect. My life was looking up after a bad divorce: I had finally found a companion for the rest of my life.

But after a couple of years, he started complaining there was no opportunity in Argentina, a claim that can be truth at any given time in a country with a rocky economy. Although I was at the pinnacle of my career, teaching at the university and making excellent money with job security, we decided to emigrate.

He left with a promise of a job and landed in New Jersey. I stayed behind to sell all our belongings. The kids were excited, a new life in a promising country.

Just several months after we landed…

As a hard worker, he had found two excellent positions and started making good money. I was sustaining the house, the children’s adaptation, and helping him build a business. I had no career of my own, but I thought it was fine to sacrifice a little for someone who was giving me so much.

Soon this wonderful man started changing, his moods and his manners altered, he was either Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde. Nothing was satisfying enough, he became jealous and demanding; the children bothered him; we all started walking on egg shells.

In a new situation and a new country, I had very few people I could trust. Although I’m easy to make friends and I spoke good English, there were cultural barriers, and the adaptation was exhausting. My sixth sense advised me I had to do something for myself: I went back to grad school.

Money was coming in but I had no control over credit cards or checking accounts, having to ask for it to buy even the minimum grocery shopping. I kept thinking his mood swings were related to work pressure but soon, the yelling, the fights and the violence started to escalate. Luckily, I was never physically harmed but not because he didn’t try.

Through a friend, I found a women’s organization with support groups in New Jersey. I felt ashamed and thought it was my fault. I met a judge and a teacher in the group, which told me domestic violence does not stop with privilege, money or education.

Through my friend’s husband, I told him he had to leave or I would ask for a restraining order – which I never did. I was terrified he was going to take vengeance on me or the kids.

Slowly, I started a new life with my children. I got a job, and new friends that brought to my life great joy and support. I found a room-mate who kept an eye on the children while I was at work –they were already teens. Happiness came back into the house and I never looked back.

I have become a successful business woman, with a great career and a group of friends and colleagues that are there for me every time I need them. Yes, there were other relationships in my life but I never gave up my economic independence, ever again. Learning to make my own decisions have been the biggest lesson I have ever attained.

Don’t be afraid, make the call and ask for help!

National Domestic Violence Hotline Staffed 24 hours a day by trained counselors who can provide crisis assistance and information about shelters, legal advocacy, health care centers, and counseling.

1-800-799-SAFE (7233)     1-800-787-3224 (TDD)

 

According to the National Latin@ Network – a project of Casa Esperanza:

  • About 20-25 percent of Latinas will experience intimate partner violence or IPV during their lifetime
  • This rate is approximately the same as for women from other racial/ethnic groups. In fact, a recent study found no significant difference across racial groups once socioeconomic status was taken into consideration.
  • Reported rates of IPV were lower for Mexican immigrants (13.4%) than for women of Mexican descent born in the United States (16.7%).
  • Immigrant women (including Latinas) who are married are more likely to experience IPV than unmarried women.
  • A study that included 2,000 Latinas found 63.1 percent of women who identified being victimized in their lifetime (i.e., interpersonal victimization such as, stalking, physical assaults, weapon assaults, physical assaults in childhood, threats, sexual assault, attempted sexual assault, etc) reported having experienced more than one victimization, with a 2.56 times average.
  • In a sample of over 300 pregnant Latinas, IPV during pregnancy was reported at 10% for physical abuse and 19% for emotional abuse.

Seeking help:

  • Latinas reported seeking access to shelters less than women from other ethnic/racial groups; this is especially true for immigrant Latina survivors.
  • Of the Latinas who experience abuse, about half of them never report the abuse to authorities.
  • Latinas prefer to tell family members, female friends, or neighbors about IPV and utilize informal resources for help while non-Latinas may be more likely to tell health care workers or clergy
  • Nearly half of Latinas in one study did not report abuse to authorities, possibly due to a variety of reasons, including fear and lack of confidence in the police, shame, guilt, loyalty and/or fear of partners, fear of deportation, and previous experience with childhood victimization.
  • Low-acculturated Latinas (both abused and non-abused) are less likely to seek and use formal social services than their more acculturated counterparts.

The National Latin@ Network for Healthy Families and Communities is a project of Casa de Esperanza that builds bridges and connections among research, practice and policy to advance effective responses to eliminate domestic violence and to promote healthy relationships within Latin@ families and communities.

For donations, go to Purple Purse Foundation

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