La Paz Chattanooga's first ever Latino Leadership Awards, recognizing and honoring Latino leaders in the Chattanooga area, is sold out, officials said. It will be held on Monday from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Mountain City Club.
Officials said, "Since the awards banquet was first announced in June of this year, La Paz has enjoyed the overwhelming support of the Chattanooga community. Higher-than-expected table sponsor demand by area businesses drove the organization to set aside more seats than originally planned for corporate partners, and on the eve of the event, seat purchases by the general public have claimed all remaining spots."
"When the La Paz staff decided to turn the Latino Leadership Awards into a reality, we believed it would capture the interest and goodwill of many people in Chattanooga," said David Martin, development and communications manager at La Paz. "However, we have been pleasantly surprised by the how quickly that support has materialized. Corporate sponsors and the public, alike, have rallied behind us, helping La Paz do what is necessary to make this inaugural event a success. Such support gives evidence to the fact that the Mission of La Paz - "to empower and engage Chattanooga's Latino community through advocacy, education and inclusion" - resonates with people from all points across the area."
Theevent will feature co-keynote speakers Andy Berke, Tennessee state senator, and his wife, Monique Prado Berke, vice president of human resources for global services at Unum. A "Chattanooga's Choice" award will be given to the nominee voted for by the broader Chattanooga community as the Latino who best demonstrates outstanding leadership qualities, service, and a commitment to community enrichment. There will also be one leader selected by the La Paz Chattanooga board and staff as the "Latino Leader of the Year."
"The most encouraging part of the leadership review process was the overwhelming number of responses we received following our request for nominations," said Mr. Martin. "It was a difficult task to finalize the honoree field, but we are confident that we have identified a solid collection of leaders from all points across Chattanooga. They each represent a healthy balance between professional success and community involvement."
Finalists to be recognized at the Latino Leadership Awards are:
Mariano Cebrián - Panoram Imports, LLC
Eduardo Centurion, Jr. - New City Fellowship
Juana Gamez - Entre Nosotras
Angela Garcia - Noticias Libres
Gabriela Halfin - Hamilton County Department of Education
Marisol Jimenez - Hamilton County Department of Education
Velvet Hernandez-Johnson - Unum
Gladys Pineda-Loher - Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce
Marta Ordonez - Entre Nosotras
David Ortiz - Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee
Dr. Carlos Parra - Southern Adventist University
Christian Patiño - Patiño Enterprises, Inc.
Pedro Pons -Chattanooga Language School
Karla Ramirez - Blood Assurance
Lydia Salva - Partnership for Families, Children and Adults
Voting for the "Chattanooga's Choice" Award is now closed.
To learn more about the Latino Leadership Awards finalists, visit http://lapazchattanooga.org/awards/