Molera Alvarez Group
As Co-founder and Managing Partner of the Molera Alvarez Group (a leading government affairs and public relations firm based in Phoenix, Arizona) Ruben Alvarez is involved in all aspects of client services. As a former top staff member to two state governors, Alvarez provides a wealth of experience in establishing and maintaining cooperative working relationships with representatives of community, business, and public interest groups. Mr. Alvarez has a successful record of developing and implementing local and national Hispanic outreach efforts for both political and corporate interests.
Prior to forming the Molera Alvarez Group, Alvarez served as Governor Jane Dee Hull's Policy Advisor for Mexico and Hispanic Affairs. Mr. Alvarez was primarily responsible for the strategic direction and management of cross border policy initiatives between Arizona and Mexico. Mr. Alvarez has worked with all levels of government on matters pertaining to Mexico policy, NAFTA, the border region, and Hispanic affairs.
In addition, Alvarez's government experience also includes serving as the Governor's Director of the Office of Equal Opportunity, where he was responsible for implementing and overseeing outreach efforts to develop greater communication links between state agencies and underrepresented communities.
Alvarez currently serves as a Board Member of the Washington, D.C. based Latino Leaders Network, is an Advisory Board Member for Voto Latino, and Past Chairman of the Board of Directors of the American Lung Association of Arizona/New Mexico. Alvarez also served as the Arizona Chair for the Viva Bush Campaign in 2004 and is a former member of the Republican National Committee's Hispanic Advisory Council.
Chairman, City View
As chairman of CityView, Henry now dedicates his efforts to creating ownership opportunities for working families through the investment of funds provided by two of the world's largest institutional investors. Previously, Cisneros was president and chief operating officer of Univision Communications in Los Angeles, the Spanish-language broadcaster, which has become the fifth-most-watched television network in the nation.
From 1993 to 1997, Cisneros served as the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. As a member of the President's Cabinet, Secretary Cisneros was assigned America's housing and community development portfolio. He is credited with initiating a major revitalization of many of the nation's public housing developments and with formulating policies which have contributed to today's record homeownership rate. Prior to joining the Cabinet, he was Chairman of Cisneros Asset Management Company, a fixed income money management firmed operating nationally.
In 1981, Cisneros became the first Hispanic American Mayor of a major U.S. city. During his four terms in office, Cisneros helped rebuild the city's economic base and created jobs through massive infrastructure and downtown improvements, making San Antonio one of the most progressive cities in the nation.
In 1984, he was interviewed by the Democratic Presidential Nominee as a potential candidate for Vice President, and in 1986 was selected the Outstanding Mayor in the nation by City and State magazine.
Mr. Cisneros has served as President of the National League of Cities, Chairman of the National Civic League, Deputy Chair of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, and as a board member of the Rockefeller Foundation. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master's degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Texas A&M University. He earned a Master's degree in Public Administration from Harvard, a Doctorate in Public Administration from George Washington University, and has been awarded over 20 honorary doctorates from leading universities.
Rev. Luis Cortés
President, Esperanza USA
The Reverend Luis Cortés is the president and CEO of Esperanza, the largest Hispanic faith-based community-development corporation in the country. In January 2005, he was featured as one of Time magazine's "25 Most Influential Evangelicals."
Recognized as a national leader of Hispanic concerns and community development, the Reverend Luis Cortés founded Esperanza (formerly known as Nueva Esperanza, Inc. and Esperanza USA) in 1987. The inspiration for Esperanza grew out of the Hispanic Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity, also founded by Rev. Cortés in 1982. He is board member and founder of United Bank; the first African American owned commercial bank in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Rev. Cortés was honored with two doctorates in divinity, has a master's degree in divinity, and a master's degree in economic development from Southern New Hampshire University. Rev. Cortés is the author of several books and has won numerous awards and honors.
Rev. Luis Cortes' Blog
TIME: 25 Most Influential Evangelicals
NPR: The Rev. Luis Cortes on the Hispanic Vote
Professor, University of Washington
Luis R. Fraga joined the University of Washington as Associate Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement in July 2007. He is the Director of the Diversity Research Institute at UW as well as a professor of Political Science. His research interests include Urban Politics and Policy, Educational Politics and Policy, Race and Ethnicity Politics.
Fraga received his Ph.D. from Rice University. He is a former member of the American Political Science Association's standing committee on Civic Engagement and Education that co-authored Democracy at Risk: How Political Choices Undermine Citizen Participation, and What We Can Do About It (Brookings Institution Press 2005). He is also co-author of Multiethnic Moments: The Politics of Urban Education Reform (Temple University Press 2006). He is one of six principal investigators on the Latino National Survey (LNS), the first-ever sixteen-state stratified survey of Latinos in the U.S. The survey asks questions regarding Latinos' political attitudes, behavior, and beliefs. This project has received $1.2M in support from major foundations and universities. Fraga is principal investigator on the project "Interests and Representation: Ethnic Advocacy on California School Boards," the first-ever statewide study of Latino school board members in California.
Lisa García Bedolla
Associate Professor, University of California at Berkeley
Professor Lisa García Bedolla is an Associate Professor at the University of California at Berkeley. She received her Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale University and her B.A. in Latin American Studies and Comparative Literature from the University of California, Berkeley.
Professor García Bedolla is interested in the political incorporation of Latinos and other racial/ethnic groups into the American political system. Her recent projects include; a historical study of group citizenship status in California during the 19th century, an evaluation of voter mobilization strategies by community-based organizations in southern California and the Central Valley, and a longitudinal study of the political socialization of immigrant youth in Orange County. Her work focuses on the intersection of race, class, and gender.
She is the author of Fluid Borders: Latino Power, Identity, and Politics in Los Angeles (University of California Press, 2005), which won the American Political Science Association's Ralph Bunche Award for the best book in political science on ethnic and cultural pluralism and a best book award from the American Political Science Association's Race, Ethnicity, and Politics Section. Her articles have appeared in the Journal of Politics, Politics and Gender, Latino Studies, the Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy, State Politics and Policy Quarterly, Social Science Quarterly, and in numerous edited volumes.
García Bedolla, L. Fluid Borders: Latino Power, Identity, and Politics in Los Angeles. Berkeley:
University of California Press, 2005.
García Bedolla, L. "Intersections of Inequality: Understanding Marginalization and Privilege in the Post-Civil-Rights Era."
Politics and Gender, forthcoming.
García Bedolla, L., J. Lavariega Monforti, and A. Pantoja. "A Second Look: The Latina/o Gender Gap."
Journal of Women, Politics & Policy, forthcoming.
García Bedolla, L. "The Gender, Race, and Ethnic Implications of Initiative Policymaking in California."
California Policy Issues Annual 6 (2005): 21-33.
García Bedolla, L. "Resources and Civic Engagement: the Importance of Social Capital for Latino Political Incorporation."
Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy 17 (2005): 41-54.
Alvarez, R. M. and L. García Bedolla. "The Foundations of Latino Voter Partisanship: Evidence from the 2000 Elections."
Journal of Politics 65 (2003): 31-49.
Rodolfo De La Garza
Professor, Columbia University
Professor de la Garza combines interests in Political Behavior and Public Policy. In Political Behavior he specializes in ethnic politics, with a particular emphasis on Latino public opinion and electoral involvement. His primary interests in public policy include immigration and immigrant settlement and incorporation. He has edited, co-edited and co-authored numerous books including The Future of the Voting Rights Act; Muted Voices: Latinos and the 2000 Election; Sending Money Home: Hispanic Remittances and Community Development and Bridging the Border: Transforming Mexico-U.S. Relations. He has also published in leading professional journals such as the American Journal of Political Science and International Migration Review. Currently he is directing studies on immigrant incorporation, Latinos and U. S. foreign policy and Latino voting patterns.
Professor de la Garza has participated in the evaluation and design of community service programs, including increasing immigrant access to health services in California and an evaluation of Texas's state-sponsored naturalization campaign.
He has also chaired a series of seminars on Latinos and foreign policy that have emphasized increasing Hispanic involvement in international affairs. He served as Vice-President of the American Political Science Association and received the Life-time Achievement Award of the Committee on the Status of Latinos in the Profession of the American Political Science Association in 1993. He is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations.
The Future of the Voting Rights Act by David L. Epstein, Richard H. Pildes, Rodolfo O. de la Garza, and Sharyn O'Halloran (Paperback - Sep 30, 2006)
Muted Voices: Latinos and the 2000 Elections (Spectrum Series) by Rodolfo O. de la Garza (Paperback - Sep 15, 2004)
Patterns of Latino turnout: Study of the 1992-1998 general elections, Harris County, Texas (Examining Latino voting patterns) by Rodolfo O De la Garza (Unknown Binding - 2002)
Sending Money Home: Hispanic Remittances and Community Development by Rodolfo O. de la Garza (Paperback - Aug 2002)
SOL Executive Director
Inspired by His Family
Javier was born and raised in the Westside in Los Angeles. While Javier's great grandparents were the first in his family to arrive from Jalisco, Mexico, each generation since has maintained firm roots in both Jalisco and California. Early on, Javier learned the value of hard work and sacrifice by working with his father as a janitor, gardener and later as a mechanic. On regular family trips to Mexico, Javier learned the values of community, family and working together. "In our small town everyone understands that our lives are tied together and that by working together we can survive hard times. Times just always seem to be hard."
To Fight for a Better Life
After barely graduating from high school and working a number of "going-nowhere" jobs, Javier met Ron Wilkins - a leader in LA's 60s Black power movement. "Ron talked to me about great leaders of the past that helped to define a new path for people like me: A role to make things better. Ron saw in me something I did not see in myself.” Later, Javier helped organize several trips to peace camps in Chiapas, Mexico where he saw firsthand extremely poor and desperate indigenous communities struggle for a better life. To this day, the organization, commitment and struggle of the people he met in Chiapas set the bar for his work.
Bringing Together Years of Labor and Community Organizing Experience
After graduating from UCLA, Javier escaped a brief stint in a UCLA PhD program to work as a community organizer under Anthony Thigpenn in South Los Angeles, and later with Day Laborers. Javier soon became an experienced organizer and helped the Justice for Janitors movement. The 2000 Justice for Janitors Strike brought out in Javier that same euphoria he felt in Chiapas. It gave him hope that if people work hard, build their resources and continue to grow and be strategic, they could make change.
Putting Hard Work and Sacrifice into Politics
After many years as a Union Organizer, Javier and other Union leaders built one of most dynamic election field machines in America. Javier focused on the members of the Union and how they could change politics in California and how they could change themselves in the process. "It was great to see the confidence grow in the members. I always said, we are not fighting for politicians, we are fighting for our place in America." Javier brings an exuberant and energetic 'Si Se Puede' attitude to everything he does while the janitors, hotel workers, laborers, and community leaders drive the work of SOL.
In honor of his father who died of cancer last year, Javier has asked for his bio to be replaced by an image of his father as a young man in Santa Monica in 1969. It is Javier's parents Miguel and Teresa Gonzalez to whom he owes the World. Javier Gonzalez is 36 and has two beautiful daughters, Melanie and Sienna, and they are proud to call Hawthorne their home.
Mickey Ibarra & Associates
After serving as Assistant to the President and Director of Intergovernmental Affairs at the White House from 1997-2001, Mickey Ibarra established Mickey Ibarra & Associates, a government and public affairs firm in Washington, D.C. His clients include corporations, associations and governments in need of issue advocacy, intergovernmental support, and Hispanic outreach.
Hispanic Magazine has named him among the "25 Most Powerful Hispanics in Washington, D.C." He is the Founder and Chairman of the Latino Leaders Network, a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing leaders together. Currently Ibarra serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF) and the Board of Directors of eLeaderTech, Inc.
At the White House, Mr. Ibarra was responsible for building support for the President's policy initiatives and responding to the concerns of state and local elected officials as well as the U.S. Territories. In 1998, President Clinton appointed Ibarra to serve as a vice-chair of the White House Task Force for the Salt Lake 2002 Winter Olympic Games.
Prior to his White House appointment, Ibarra was the Political Manager for the National Education Association. His responsibilities there included assisting with campaign strategy development, federal candidate support, political education, and state government affairs. He also served as the Senior Advisor and Director of Special Projects for the Clinton-Gore '96 campaign. A native of Salt Lake City, Mr. Ibarra taught at-risk high school students for five years in the Utah public schools. He served in the United States Army from 1970-1973.
Fostering leadership among Latinos: Mickey Ibarra
Roberto Lovato is a New York-based contributing Associate Editor with New America Media and a frequent contributor to The Nation Magazine. He has also written for The Los Angeles Times, Salon, Der Spiegel, Utne Magazine, La Opinion, and other national and international media outlets. On the electronic front, Lovato has produced programming for NPR, Pacifica, and the Univision Television Network, where he helped develop and produce Hora Cero, one of that network's first documentary series on immigration in the United States. He is also the former Executive Director of CARECEN, the largest immigrant rights organization in the country at that time. You can find him posting regularly on media, migration, politics and other issues at his blog.
The Nation Articles:
In These Times Articles:
Public Eye Articles:
Los Angeles Times Articles:
Ruben E. Navarrette Jr.
Ruben Navarrette Jr. is a nationally syndicated columnist with the Washington Post Writers Group. His twice weekly column appears in more than 175 newspapers. The second-generation Mexican-American is one of fewer than 10 Latino syndicated columnists in the United States, and one of the country's youngest syndicated columnists overall.
The two-time Harvard graduate is also an editorial writer and board member for The San Diego Union-Tribune. A former radio talk show host in three markets (Los Angeles, Phoenix and Fresno), he writes and records commentaries for National Public Radio's "Morning Edition." On television he is often called upon to discuss current affairs on CNN and on "The Newshour with Jim Lehrer" on PBS. He has also appeared on "Now with Bill Moyers," "The Chris Matthews Show" and "The O'Reilly Factor."
Navarrette's first book, "A Darker Shade of Crimson: Odyssey of a Harvard Chicano," was published to favorable reviews by Bantam Books in 1993, when the author was just 26 years old. In 2000, his essay, "Vindication" (about the difficulties encountered in attempting to launch his writing career) was selected from over 5,000 entries as one of the 101 contributions to "Chicken Soup for the Writer's Soul," an installment of the best-selling "Chicken Soup for the Soul" series.
Column in SignOnSanDiego:
Articles in RealClearPolitics:
Co-Chair, McCain National Hispanic Advisory Council
Ana Navarro was born in Nicaragua. In 1980, at age eight and as a result of the Sandinista revolution in their native country, she and her family immigrated to the United States and resettled in Miami.
Ms. Navarro is a graduate of the University of Miami. In 1993, she obtained her Bachelor in Arts Degree with Majors in Latin American Studies and Political Science. She obtained a Juris Doctorate in 1997. She has expertise on Latin American and Hispanic issues.
In 1997, she was a special advisor to the Government of Nicaragua. In that role, she was one of the primary advocates for NACARA (Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central American Relief Act). In 1998, at the request of then gubernatorial candidate, Jeb Bush, she was part of a three person team that advocated and eventually won passage of HARIFA (Haitian Refugee through Immigration Fairness Act).
She served on Gov. Jeb Bush's transition team and was briefly, Director of Immigration Policy in the Executive Office of the Governor.
In 1999, she returned to the private sector and has represented private and public clients on federal issues, particularly related to immigration, trade and policy affecting Central America.
In 2001, she served as Ambassador to the United Nation's Human Rights Commission and helped bring about a condemnation of the Government of Cuba for human rights abuses.
She has served on the Board of the National Immigration Forum, South Florida Boys Scouts, Florida FTA, and currently serves on Miami Dade College Foundation.
Co-Chair, Obama National Campaign
Federico Peña is a noted Latino public official who served two terms in the Colorado General Assembly and two terms as mayor of Denver, Colorado. In 1992 he became U.S. Secretary of Transportation under U.S. President Bill Clinton. Federico currently serves as Managing Director in Vestar's Denver office, which he joined in 1998.
In 1992, after Clinton won the presidential election, Peña joined his "transition team" for transportation issues, and was later nominated as Secretary of Transportation. Peña was one of the most visible and influential secretaries in the history of the office. He was involved in several high-profile aviation issues, including foreign investment in USAir, formal complaints against Japan and Australia for restrictions on U.S. air carriers, and advocacy of tax and loan guarantees for the major airlines. Peña earned the eternal enmity of the automotive industry by pushing a piece of legislation called the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act, which encourages long-range municipal plans for alternate modes of transportation such as mass transit, bicycling, and walking.
Peña's successes reportedly impressed President Clinton, and his liberal theories on transportation policy became well-known. By the end of his term as Secretary of Transportation, Peña had become one of the most prominent Latino Democrats in the country.
Contemporary American Success Stories: Famous People of Hispanic Heritage : Geraldo Rivera, Melissa Gonzalez, Federico Pena, Ellen Ochoa (Mitchell Lane Multicultural Biography Series)
by Barbara J. Marvis and Barbara Tidman (Library Binding - Sep 1995)
President, NDN (Formerly known as New Democrat Network)
Simon Rosenberg is President and Founder of the New Democrat Network, NDN, a leading progressive think tank and advocacy organization.
Simon has worked in national politics and the media world for more than 20 years. He started his career in network television, as a writer and producer at ABC News for five years, before working on the Dukakis and Clinton Presidential campaigns. On the Clinton campaign, he was a member of the famous 1992 Clinton War Room. After the campaign, Simon worked at the Democratic National Committee and Democratic Leadership Council before starting what is now NDN in 1996.
During his time at the helm of NDN and its predecessor organization the New Democrat Network, Simon has helped elect more than 50 new members to the Senate and House of Representatives. He has also been an influential champion of a new and more modern agenda for the nation, an innovator in helping progressives reach out to and communicate with Hispanic voters, and a leader in creating the 21st century progressive movement.
Simon is a member of the Aspen Institute's 2001 Class of Henry Crown Fellows and served on the 2004 Democratic National Convention Platform Committee. He sits on the boards of the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service and the publication Democracy: A Journal of Ideas. Simon was recently named one of the 50 most powerful people in D.C. by GQ magazine. A 1985 graduate of Tufts University, Simon lives in Washington, D.C. with his family.
New Democratic Network:
On March 7, 2007, NDN hosted a bicameral event focused on comprehensive immigration reform.
As the founder and CEO of Impacto Group LLC, one of the few woman-owned communications and market research firms in the United States, Leslie Sanchez has become a much sought-after voice on social and economic trends affecting women and the emerging U.S. Latino community. Hispanic Business magazine named her one of the nation's "100 Most Influential Hispanics."
A former Bush administration official, Sanchez is known for her straightforward style and in-depth understanding of the political and cultural landscape inside—and outside—Washington, DC. A veteran of numerous local, state and national campaigns, in 1999 she served as Deputy Press Secretary of the Republican National Committee. In this capacity, she helped create the Republicans' first-ever multi-million dollar ad campaign aimed at Hispanic voters. She later served as Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans. Sanchez is a frequent columnist, and her public analysis has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, U.S. News & World Report, as well as on NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox News, MSNBC, CNN, Univision, Telemundo, and leading PBS programs, including News Hour with Jim Lehrer.
Real Clear Politics Article:
What's in a 'Ghetto'
Los Republicanos: Book and Website:
Information coming soon...
Lionel Sosa is an independent marketing consultant and a nationally recognized portrait artist. He founded Sosa, Bromley, Aguilar & Associates, now Bromley Communications.
Lionel was named "One of the 25 most influential Hispanics in America" by Time Magazine in 2005. Sosa has been a Hispanic Media Consultant in six Republican presidential campaigns beginning in 1980 and has been media advisor in over 100 political campaigns. These campaigns included; Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush and now Sosa is co-chairman of the John McCain advertising committee.
From 1991 to 1995 he was Chairman of DMB&B/Américas, a network of 23 advertising agencies in the U.S. and Latin America with billings of $500 million representing multi-national clients such as Coca-Cola, Burger King, Anheuser Busch, American Airlines, 23 Procter & Gamble brands, Western Union and Sprint.
Sosa has served on the Board of Regents of The Texas A&M University System, on the board of directors of The Hispanic Scholarship Fund, ACT (American College Testing), Bank of America, Texas, Taco Cabana and National Convenience Stores. He has served as Vice-Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the University of the Incarnate Word and as a member of the Board of Directors of Sesame Workshop, creators of Sesame Street. He chaired both the United Way of San Antonio and the San Antonio Symphony and served on Eastman Kodak's External Diversity Advisory Panel.
In the spring of 2001, Lionel was a Fellow at the Institute of Politics at Harvard University in Cambridge and regularly guest lectures at The University of Texas in Austin, Texas State University, The University of Houston and The University of the Incarnate Word.
Lionel Sosa TIME Article:
The Americano Dream: How Latinos Can Achieve Success in Business and in Life
USC, Annenberg School for Communication
Roberto Suro is a veteran print journalist with extensive experience in foreign, domestic and Washington coverage as a senior staffer for The New York Times and The Washington Post.
Prior to joining the School of Journalism faculty in August 2007, he was director of the Pew Hispanic Center, a research organization in Washington D.C. which he founded in 2001 as a project of the Annenberg School for Communication. At the Center, Suro supervised the production of more than 100 publications that offered non-partisan statistical analysis and public opinion surveys chronicling the rapid growth of the Latino population and its implications for the nation as a whole.
Suro's journalistic career began in 1974 at the City News Bureau of Chicago as a police reporter, and after tours at the Chicago Sun Times and the Chicago Tribune he joined TIME Magazine, where he worked as a correspondent in the Chicago, Washington, Beirut and Rome bureaus. In 1985 he started at The New York Times with postings as bureau chief in Rome and Houston. After a year as an Alicia Patterson Fellow, Suro was hired at The Washington Post as a staff writer on the national desk, eventually covering a variety of beats including the Justice Department and the Pentagon and serving as deputy national editor.
Coverage of Latinos and, more broadly, immigration to the United States has been continuous themes throughout Suro's career. He is author of Strangers Among Us: Latino Lives in a Changing America (Vintage, 1999), as well as numerous reports, articles and other publications on these subjects. He continues to conduct research and write on the Hispanic population through grant-funded projects and as a non-resident senior fellow of the Brookings Institution.
National Association of Latino Elected Officials
Arturo Vargas is the Executive Director of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, a national membership organization of Latino policymakers and their supporters governed by a 25-member Board of Directors. Vargas also serves as Executive Director of the NALEO Educational Fund, an affiliated national nonprofit organization that strengthens American democracy by promoting the full participation of Latinos in civic life. Prior to joining NALEO, Vargas' was Vice President for Community Education and Public Policy of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund where he supervised and directed MALDEF's community education and leadership development programs. His prior positions at MALDEF included Director of Outreach and Policy where he coordinated the organization's 1991 redistricting efforts which led to an historic increase in the number of Latinos serving in the California legislature. Before that, Vargas directed MALDEF's National 1990 Census Program, an award-winning national outreach and public policy effort to promote a full count of the Latino population. Before joining MALDEF, Vargas was the senior education policy analyst at the National Council of La Raza in Washington, D.C.
Vargas is a nationally recognized expert in Latino demographic trends, electoral participation, voting rights, the Census, and redistricting.
Vargas presently serves on the boards of Zero Divide, the Council on Foundations, the Independent Sector, the Alliance for a Better Community, and the United Way of Greater Los Angeles. Vargas has received Hispanic Magazine's Hispanic Achievement Award for Community Service, the National Federation of Hispanic Owned Newspapers' Leadership Award, the National Association for Bilingual Educations President' Award, the City University of New York's Civic Leadership Award, Univision's Community Service Corazon Award, and the National School Board Association's Hispanic Caucus Abrazo Award. He has been included in Hispanic Business Magazine's List of 100 Hispanic Influentials twice, and has been named one of the 101 most influential Latinos four times by Latino Leaders Magazine.
Tacos El Pelon
Information coming soon...