Eva Longoria Baston & America Ferrera Empower Latinas through ‘She Se Puede’
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Eva Longoria and America Ferrera

By Monica Luhar

“Sí se puede” is a powerful phrase that was coined by labor activist Dolores Huerta, who pushed for better working conditions and rights for farmworkers.

(It was also used as an empowering chant by a group of Latina cheerleaders in the Disney Channel Original Movie, Gotta Kick it Up! featuring award-winning actress America Ferrera).

Today, the phrase continues to serve as an empowering message for Latinas in the form of a new nonpartisan digital community platform known as “She Se Puede” (with a particular emphasis on the word, “she”).

She Se Puede—launched by actress-activists Eva Longoria Baston and America Ferrera, and a group of passionate Latina leaders—aims to empower Latinas “to realize and act on their own power.”

The platform gives Latinas an opportunity to celebrate their impact and achievements, connect with community resources, and be inspired by diverse lifestyle content highlighting Latinas.

“America and I worked with Dolores for decades and we just wanted to have her blessings because there’s such history in ‘Sí se puede,'” Eva told GMA.

“It was birthed from me and America and Zoe Saldana, and we were all campaigning in Florida, advocating for yet another candidate on a stage, giving talking points and we were going, ‘Why aren’t we advocating for ourselves? Where’s the community? And not only of Latinos, but specifically of Latinas,'” Eva said.

Too often, Latinas are underrepresented in entertainment, government, and other aspects of society. Their voices are often excluded from the narrative, which is why the idea for “She Se Puede” came into conception to embolden and inspire Latinas to trust in their power.

“Unless and until we believe in our own potential and realize our own power, we will remain underrepresented as a political and cultural force,” said America Ferrera.

The goal for “She Se Puede” is to build a unique digital community and lifestyle platform “for Latinas, by Latinas” by publishing relatable and inspiring, everyday lifestyle content ranging from health, food parenting, beauty, to civic engagement. It’s also an opportunity to help provide Latinas with the tools they need to own their power.

Eva and America have both encouraged Latinas to share their “She Se Puede” moments on social media to engage and inspire a growing and close-knit Latina community where women see themselves reflected through everyday, raw moments.

Eva recently shared a Facebook photo of herself breastfeeding her son while working on set as a director. Eva posted, “This is my She Se Puede moment! This [photograph] was taken when I was directing right after my son was born. Breastfeeding on set, pumping milk on my breaks, and directing a television show was challenging. But I did it! And I knew I could because we (Latinas) can accomplish anything! Follow @she_sepuede and celebrate a moment you’re proud of with #shesepuede for a chance to be featured.”

America Ferrera, Rosario Dawson, Zoe Saldana and Eva Longoria are seen prior to the Latinas Stand Up rally in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Alexander Tamargo/Getty Images)

In September—just a few weeks before the presidential election—She Se Puede posted a call out on Instagram encouraging Latinas interested to join the “She Se Puede Power Squad.” It was part of an effort to encourage Latinas from across the country to step up and transform their lives, communities, and country by acting as community ambassadors.

For Eva, the platform is very much an empowering state of mind for Latinas:

“So when we say empowerment, we mean we want Latinas to feel empowered in everything that they do, from their careers, to their workouts, to what food they eat, and even how they can request their mail-in ballot,” said Eva.

The digital platform was officially created by a team of Latina leaders passionate about mobilizing and creating change in the community: Alex Martínez Kondracke, America Ferrera, Carmen Perez, Christy Haubegger, Elsa Collins, Eva Longoria Bastón, Jess Morales Rocketto, Mónica Ramírez, Olga Segura, and Stephanie Valencia.

Eva Longoria: From Desperate Housewives to Political Activist

Eva has used her influence as a Latina actress, director, producer, entrepreneur, and philanthropist to make a positive impact in the Latina community.

Known as the character Gabrielle Solis in the comedy-drama series, Desperate Housewives, Eva has often looked to the show’s storytelling and execution in her own journey as a producer. The show first aired its pilot in October 2004, putting her in the spotlight.

“For her, the Desperate Housewives pilot was a masterclass in how to create and launch a TV show, and she says she still uses what she learned from that experience as a producer launching her own shows,” Variety said.

The 2017 Philanthropist of the Year has also used her platform as an actress to shed light on other critical issues ranging from politics to better education and entrepreneurship opportunities for Latinas.

Eva has also been a prominent advocate for disability rights and amplifying the voices of Latinos in politics.

Eva Longorial and America Ferrera at Latinx event
Eva Longoria and America Ferrera attend The Latinx House And Netflix Host Their Joint Kick-off Party At The 2020 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Owen Hoffmann/Getty Images for The Latinx House)

She has been associated with many different charities and foundations over the years, with a focus on advocating for various causes affecting women and children.

In 2006, she co-founded Eva’s Heroes, an organization that aims to enrich the lives of individuals with intellectual special needs.

Eva’s Heroes is an organization that is very near and dear to her heart, as she has a sister with special needs. “I am blessed with a sister who has special needs. Now, I want to impact the lives of similar young adults nationwide,” said Eva.

With her entrepreneurial spirit and inspiring advocacy career, Eva has long been fighting for more representation of Latino political leaders, co-founding Latino Victory Fund, a progressive political committee to help grow Latino political power and influence.

Most recently, she headlined and opened up the 2020 Democratic National Convention with an inspiring speech about saving our democracy and making our voices heard:

“So, tonight we stand together, united by the values we cherish: Decency, respect, justice, and the opportunity to rise up. We always hear that line about this being the most important election of our lifetimes, but this year, it really is.”

In her keynote speech, she also acknowledged the lives lost and impacted by COVID-19, compounded by immense job loss and division. “Yet, in the middle of the fear and sorrow and uncertainty, people have come together because they know we are better than this. America is better than this,” she added.

It wasn’t long until Eva received criticism for headlining the convention from Marco Rubio in a tweet that said, “Brilliant move! No one is more in touch with the challenges & obstacles faced by everyday Americans than actors & celebrities.”

Eva hosted the DNC, not just as an actress, but also as a Latina woman with immense influence and advocacy for different important causes affecting women and the Latino community, said Refinery29.

Beyond her trailblazing work and committing to better Latino representation, she is also committed to empowering and supporting the Latino community through education and entrepreneurship opportunities.

In 2013, Eva received her master’s degree in Chicano Studies from California State University, Northridge. She has also worked tirelessly to help advocate for more Latino representation and job opportunities for Latinos in the Hollywood entertainment industry. USC Annenberg reported that between 2007 and 2013, only 3 percent of films featured leads or co-leads with Latino actors. And, of the films that were analyzed, only 4.5 percent of all speaking characters were Latino in the past decade.

Through her work with the Eva Longoria Foundation, Eva has been committed to investing in Latino community leaders and entrepreneurs. She recently joined forces with the Latino Community Foundation to continue supporting Latina entrepreneurs in California during the “Coming of Age” 15th anniversary gala in May 2020.

During the gala, Eva announced a new initiative aimed at investing and supporting Latina entrepreneurs in California. Proceeds from the gala supported Latino organizations that provide vital services to low-income families that are impacted by wage loss as well as California farmworkers and their families.

Eva has long been an outspoken advocate for Latino representation and has empowered Latina youth through various mentorship and STEM programs at the Eva Longoria Foundation.

The foundation’s programs help narrow the opportunity gap that many Latinas face through culturally relevant programs, such as STEM education, mentorship, parent engagement, and entrepreneurship.

The Eva Longoria Foundation says Latinas are a rapidly growing demographic with immense potential, but they “disproportionately lack educational opportunities and face economic challenges.”

The goal of the foundation is to close the education gap and help Latinas build better futures through education and entrepreneurship.

Along with supporting and empowering Latino youth, Eva is passionate about civic engagement, empowering Latino voters, and advocating for more Latino representation in politics.

She co-founded the Latino Victory Project—a progressive political action committee–to elevate the voices of Latinos through politics and increase representation “at every level of government.”

In July, Eva headlined a kickoff event announcing Latino Victory Fund’s launch of the First Latinas program geared toward electing “trailblazing Latinas” to increase Latina representation in government and other aspects of political life.

Eva Longoria, actress, activist, and Co-Founder of Latino Victory, gets ready to remove her “Vote” mask to speak before Democratic Presidential Candidate Joe Biden. (Photo by JIM WATSON / AFP) (Photo by JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images)

Whether it’s saving our democracy to empowering youth and advocating for women, Eva has become an outspoken and much-needed voice in the Latina community.

America Ferrera: From Ugly Betty to Advocating for the Rights of Women

As an award-winning actress, producer, director, activist, organizer, and the proud daughter of immigrants from Honduras, America Ferrera has paved the way for Latina representation, speaking out about pressing political issues, and encouraging women to be in “decision-making roles” by getting a seat at the table.

In the early 2000s, America appeared as a Latina lead in the cult-favorite ABC comedy series Ugly Betty and the movie Real Women Have Curves, along with countless other groundbreaking lead roles. She has also gone on to star in the NBC show Superstore and has produced and directed several TV shows.

She has also received countless awards and was recognized as the first Latina to win an Outstanding Lead Actress Emmy for her lead role in Ugly Betty.

“I don’t fit in traditional boxes for women on screen. When I became an actress, my mere presence was a revolution because I wasn’t supposed to exist in this industry,” America told net-a-porter in an interview.

America has spoken out about the need for Latinas to see themselves represented on television. In an interview with the New York Times, America talked about the importance of diverse storytelling and representation:

“Our writers aren’t sort of pulling issues from the headlines. They are mostly driven by the characters in the show. And this is where the real necessity for diversity is exemplified. It’s so that the storytelling is rich and compelling and relevant to today because that is what our world actually looks like. That is what our culture should be reflective of—all the different points of view and real-life experiences that one has as an America.”

America is also a storyteller herself: She wrote a New York Times bestselling book, American Like Me: Reflections on Life Between Cultures, which highlights the experience of growing up between cultures.

Perhaps America’s most notable role off-screen is one as an advocate for women and helping Latinas and women of color recognize their true power and influence.

She has continued to advocate for women across the globe. She recently served as a keynote speaker for the Texas Women’s Foundation virtual luncheon September 29, 2020.

Her keynote address highlighted the importance of creating opportunities for women and empowering them to speak out about their experiences. It was also an opportunity to discuss her book, which features essays of 31 other first-generation American artists and activists who share their personal accounts of assimilating in America and staying connected to their roots.

One of her most impactful and life-changing moments was when she was invited as the opening speaker at the historic inaugural Women’s March in D.C. in 2017, where she used her platform as an actress and women and civil rights advocate to create and inspire change.

America is no stranger to speaking out against injustices. She has also spoken out about various issues concerning immigration, the environment, and healthcare. She talked about the importance of the Women’s March and how that day continued to impact and inspire change:

“None of us knew how historical the march would be. We’ve lost so much ground in this country going backwards, making people’s lives less equal and dignified. I think back to that day: we’re not alone, people will show up,” America told net-a-porter.

America’s experience at the historic Women’s March was something that continued to inspire her advocacy through her nonprofit organization, Harness. She began thinking of innovative ways to mobilize and bring communities together through the power of love, relationship building, and sustaining movements.

In an excerpt from “Together We Rise: Behind the Scenes at the Protest Heard Around the World” as quoted by Time Magazine, America talked about the impact of the Women’s March and the need to continue talking about channeling energy into sustaining the movement: “Our gatherings grew into an organization called Harness. We bring people together in the hope that those wanting to use their voices can do it from a deeper, more rooted place, because they are invested in real, personal relationships. That’s the fuel. The people you meet, the bodies you hug, the stories you hear. We don’t have to worry about people going home and forgetting what they heard and what they need to do. You don’t forget about people you know and love—you carry them in your heart. If we can bring that ethic of community and love into our daily lives, I believe we can sustain the movement.”

In 2016, America addressed the Democratic National Convention and later that year. After the events that transpired after the election, she launched Harness, along with her husband, Ryan Pier Williams, and Wilmer Valderrama.

The organization features a robust community of artists, activists, as well as entertainment leaders to elevate the experiences of marginalized communities. Today, Harness is more critical than ever during a pandemic that has claimed the lives of 200,000 Americans and continued racial injustice.

In an interview with Vogue, America talked about the decisions that others make about the lives of others and the importance of art and spreading political awareness:

“People make decisions every single day that impact my life—the air I breathe, my ability to walk down the street and be safe, how much money I make for the job I do, whether I can choose what happens to my body. And at every important social moment in our history, artists have played a role. It doesn’t have to be about marching. The art itself has a role to play. At the end of the day, it’s about wielding that sword with awareness.”

America also hasn’t shied away from getting political and speaking out about inequalities and injustice to women. She shared her personal experience as a survivor of childhood sexual assault during #MeToo:

“First time I can remember being sexually assaulted I was 9 years old…I told no one and lived with the shame and guilt thinking all along that I, a 9-year-old child, was somehow responsible for the actions of a grown man,” America told Variety.

America Ferrera Book
America Ferrera Book

She also went on to show solidarity with leaders and activists during the launch of the Time’s Up Movement, an initiative that aims to address issues related to sexual harassment in the workplace and the need for more advocacy for women. Several Hollywood leaders and celebrities like America and Shonda Rhimes committed to the movement’s mission in solidarity.

According to InStyle, America was one of the “first women in Hollywood who listened when 700,000 blue-collar women wrote an open letter offering support for those who’ve publicly shared their sexual harassment stories.”

In 2019, America helped mobilize and lead a group of actors including Eva, Kerry Washington, and others to meet with immigrant lawyers and migrant families seeking asylum.

America was deeply concerned about the Trump Administration policies and treatment of refugees. She told NBC News that the visit to the shelter in Tijuana was an opportunity to educate others on important issues.

She referenced being a mom and holding her newborn just the previous year, and thinking about the lack of running water or clean food that many refugees who are trying to seek asylum are denied: “How dire would my situation have to be to grab this brand new child and walk for a month, with no access to clean water and food, not knowing what I would meet along the way, to try and seek asylum and safety and refuge because my situation was so bad?” America questioned.

Over the years, America has become an empowering force in the Latina community. She’s been a much-needed voice speaking out about issues that concern women.

The Future of ‘She Se Puede’

Both America and Eva have made an impact speaking out about important issues affecting our communities, while empowering Latinas to tap into their inner strength and power.

The launch of She Se Puede comes at a critical time in the wake of important movements amplifying the impact of women, particularly Latinas.

As prominent Latina women with immense influence, both Eva and America are committed to continuing to uplift the voices of Latina women both online and offline.

She Se Puede continues to be a hopeful and optimistic digital community platform that addresses Latinas’ unique needs and provides ongoing support and resources to empower change.

“She Se Puede is the destination for the modern Latina who wants to level up her life. We celebrate our diverse experiences and dreams, and provide the tools we need to own our power. She Se Puede is a community for Latinas, by Latinas.”

Hispanics In Wine Organization Aims To Empower Latinx Wine Communities
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Hispanics in Wine cofounders Lydia Richards and Maria Calvert holding two glasses of wine up to the camera with a sunset over a city behind them.

By Mike DeSimone and Jeff Jenssen, Forbes

Social organization Hispanics in Wine was founded with the aim of promoting equality and diversity and helping Latinx professionals advance in the wine industry. Founded in September 2020, it consists of a social media space and website which serve as a digital platform for insight into opportunities and resources for members of the community.

It was established by Lydia Richards and Maria Calvert alongside wine professional Ivonne Nill. The organization’s mission is to give back to Spanish-speaking communities by promoting equality and helping the new generation of Latinx professionals advance in the wine and hospitality industries. Hispanics in Wine also intends to help wine companies better communicate with their Spanish-speaking consumers.

Cofounders Maria Calvert and Lydia Richards met while working in wine public relations at Colangelo & Partners, a well-known agency with offices in New York and California. Calvert, a native of Quito, Ecuador, is currently working as an independent Public Relations Consultant with a focus on startup and established brands in wine and food, while Richards, who hails from Panama, recently started a job as PR Manager at Taub Family Companies: Palm Bay International and Taub Family Selections.

At this time Hispanics in Wine has more than 30 members and is prepared to grow as word spreads within the wine and hospitality industries. Hispanics in Wine aims to encourage and connect people from diverse backgrounds to pursue their career path in the industry through the organization. It also intends to help wine brands and companies cater to the Latinx population in the U.S., whose buying power is forecasted to top $1.9 trillion by 2023.

As Women’s Month draws to a close, we are concluding our focus on women in the wine industry with this interview of co-founder Maria Calvert.

World Wine Guys: What was the impetus behind starting Hispanics in Wine?

Maria Calvert: In 2018, I transitioned to the wine industry and met Lydia Richards at a public relations agency. As part of our PR jobs, we work closely with all types of professionals in the alcohol beverage and hospitality industries, including sommeliers, retail stores, restaurants, trade, press, wine brands, winemakers, marketing professionals, and many others. Coming new into the wine industry, you see people of color cutting the grapes and working behind the scenes, but we noticed the lack of representation and diversity when attending trade events, press trips, and executive meetings. In addition to the lack of BIPOC, Hispanic, and Latinx professionals in decision-making roles, we noticed the lack of Spanish language resources for our community, brands neglecting Hispanic and Latinx consumers, and the need to amplify the work done by vineyard stewards.

As a result of our professional experience as two Latina immigrants in the wine industry and Covid disproportionately impacting the hospitality industry and minority communities, we decided to launch Hispanics in Wine in September 2020. We chose this month in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. Culturally, Hispanics and Latinx work together as a community; it’s part of our pride, family, our roots. Community is so important to us, and this is something that we are trying to replicate with Hispanics in Wine. We created this centralized digital space for individuals to feel welcomed by the industry, to find important English and Spanish resources, to provide a sense of community with other Hispanics & Latinx alcohol and hospitality professionals, and more importantly, to educate the public about our communities and amplify the diverse talent and knowledge we offer and promote more representation in the industry.

WWG: Which areas of the wine community have you drawn members from thus far?

MC: The Hispanics in Wine team are four women with different professional careers, hailing from different countries, and different journeys in the wine industry: Lydia Richards, Ivonne Nill, Emilia Alvarez, and myself. It is important to highlight our team diversity because it allows us to understand the industry’s needs, bridging the gap for opportunities and language, and build a broad Hispanic and Latinx beverage and hospitality community.

As a result of our team’s efforts and continued outreach, we have connected with wine professionals across the United States and worldwide. We have a community that covers the spectrum of wine and hospitality. For example, we have Nial Harris García, Wine Director at the Conrad Hotel in Washington D.C., Hugo Arias, Head Sommelier at The Grill in Washington D.C., Gabriela Fernández, Marketing and Event Coordinator for a California wine producer, Jesica Vargas, Founder and Wine Blogger of AndesUncorked, DeAnna Ornelas, President of non-profit organization AHIVOY, Sam Parra, Owner of PARRA Wines Co., and many others. Our Hispanics in Wine community is growing every day, and we have received tremendous support from many wine professionals in the industry who want to help in any way possible.

WWG: How are you reaching Latinx members of the wine community in order to let them know about Hispanics in Wine?

MC: We are working with our Hispanics in Wine community to help spread the word, share the “Hispanics in Wine Spotlight Series” within their network, and notify other Hispanics and Latinx professionals about this initiative. We started Hispanics in Wine on social media, and we now have a website. We have received inquiries from individuals trying to pursue a career in wine who reached out to us via Instagram, and individuals who found our website via Google GOOG +2.8% search. We have also received inquiries from other Hispanic and Latinx professionals asking how they can help with the initiative and perhaps serve as mentors.

Click here to read the full article on Forbes.

Eva Longoria to Direct & Executive Produce ‘The Gordita Chronicles’ Comedy Pilot for HBO Max
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Eva Longoria speaking in front of a zoom camera giving her speech for the Critics Choice Awards

Eva Longoria is set to direct and be an executive producer of new Latino comedy pilot The Gordita Chronicles for HBO Max. The Gordita Chronicles follows the life of a preteen Dominican girl who is having trouble fitting into a very opulent and extravagant Miami, in the 1980s no less.

Zoe Saldana along with her sisters will serve as producers on the show.

The family comedy is based on the childhood of Latina journalist Claudia Forestier (who will also serve as a producer and writer for the show). Forestier also is an executive story writer for Selena: The Series.

As for the cast, Juan Javier Cardenas and Diana Maria Riva will star in the pilot. Cardenas is mostly known as Dante in The Walking Dead. And Riva is most known for her role as Detective Perez in Dead to Me.

Longoria isn’t a stranger to television directing. She has more than a dozen credits ranging from Grand Hotel, Black-ish, and The Mick. Eva, however, is making her film directing debut with Flamin’ Hot. The biopic is about the Mexican janitor who invented the Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. Longoria made the announcement on instagram earlier this month.

“I’m BEYOND excited & honored to announce my part within this brilliant team of women coming together to create ‘The Gordita Chronicles’ 🎬💪🏽.” She went on to say, “The lack of representation and diversity in Hollywood continues to be a major focus, rightfully so, and I’m so honored to be a part of the change!”

Click here to read the full article on Remezcla.

Cardi B says she will launch haircare line to teach people about ‘Afro-Latina’ hair
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Cardi B performing onstage during the Grammy Awards ceremony at the Los Angeles Convention Center

Cardi B has said she will launch her own range of haircare products, in an attempt to teach people about “Afro-Latina” hair.

The rapper said she was inspired to work on the products after receiving offensive comments about a video she posted about her natural hair.

“This year I will be coming out with a haircare line,” Cardi B wrote on Instagram. “I think [it is] time for people to educate themselves on nationality, race and ethnicity.”

She added: “People [are] thinking every Hispanic is Mexican or something and must have the same hair texture, colour and features.

“Being Hispanic/Latina don’t make your hair long, don’t make your skin light [and] don’t make your face features slim especially [if you come from] Latin countries from the Caribbean islands … DNA has something to do with your hair not your nationality.”

In another tweet, Cardi B wrote: “Hair texture [doesn’t] make you a race, however I am Afro-Latina.”

Cardi B said the haircare line was something she had been working on for herself and for her daughter’s hair. It is not known if the line will contain a hair mask product, a recipe for which she shared online last year. The mask included avocado, argan oil, mayonnaise, black castor oil, olive oil, two eggs, honey and banana.

In 2020, Latino consumers under 35 spent $663m on beauty products, with hair care, hair colour and nails dominating, according to Nielsen.

Juvan José Amaya, a partner at Juve consulting, said the Latin beauty market was in transition.

“We are slowly shifting the idea that Latinas have nice hazel or green eyes, or look ‘exotic’,” he told WWD. “As a generation we hate the word exotic, that’s a big ‘no’… [beauty is] starting to become a little more … inclusive and accepting of natural features, such as curly hair.”

Click here to read the full article on the Guardian.

Hispanics In Wine Organization Aims To Empower Latinx Wine Communities
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two women smile at the camera and hold a glass of wine as the sun sets in the background

Social organization Hispanics in Wine was founded with the aim of promoting equality and diversity and helping Latinx professionals advance in the wine industry. Founded in September 2020, it consists of a social media space and website which serve as a digital platform for insight into opportunities and resources for members of the community.

It was established by Lydia Richards and Maria Calvert alongside wine professional Ivonne Nill. The organization’s mission is to give back to Spanish-speaking communities by promoting equality and helping the new generation of Latinx professionals advance in the wine and hospitality industries. Hispanics in Wine also intends to help wine companies better communicate with their Spanish-speaking consumers.

Photo: Forbes

Cofounders Maria Calvert and Lydia Richards met while working in wine public relations at Colangelo & Partners, a well-known agency with offices in New York and California. Calvert, a native of Quito, Ecuador, is currently working as an independent Public Relations Consultant with a focus on startup and established brands in wine and food, while Richards, who hails from Panama, recently started a job as PR Manager at Taub Family Companies: Palm Bay International and Taub Family Selections.

At this time Hispanics in Wine has more than 30 members and is prepared to grow as word spreads within the wine and hospitality industries. Hispanics in Wine aims to encourage and connect people from diverse backgrounds to pursue their career path in the industry through the organization. It also intends to help wine brands and companies cater to the Latinx population in the U.S., whose buying power is forecasted to top $1.9 trillion by 2023.

As Women’s Month draws to a close, we are concluding our focus on women in the wine industry with this interview of co-founder Maria Calvert.

World Wine Guys: What was the impetus behind starting Hispanics in Wine?

Maria Calvert: In 2018, I transitioned to the wine industry and met Lydia Richards at a public relations agency. As part of our PR jobs, we work closely with all types of professionals in the alcohol beverage and hospitality industries, including sommeliers, retail stores, restaurants, trade, press, wine brands, winemakers, marketing professionals, and many others. Coming new into the wine industry, you see people of color cutting the grapes and working behind the scenes, but we noticed the lack of representation and diversity when attending trade events, press trips, and executive meetings. In addition to the lack of BIPOC, Hispanic, and Latinx professionals in decision-making roles, we noticed the lack of Spanish language resources for our community, brands neglecting Hispanic and Latinx consumers, and the need to amplify the work done by vineyard stewards.

As a result of our professional experience as two Latina immigrants in the wine industry and Covid disproportionately impacting the hospitality industry and minority communities, we decided to launch Hispanics in Wine in September 2020. We chose this month in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. Culturally, Hispanics and Latinx work together as a community; it’s part of our pride, family, our roots. Community is so important to us, and this is something that we are trying to replicate with Hispanics in Wine. We created this centralized digital space for individuals to feel welcomed by the industry, to find important English and Spanish resources, to provide a sense of community with other Hispanics & Latinx alcohol and hospitality professionals, and more importantly, to educate the public about our communities and amplify the diverse talent and knowledge we offer and promote more representation in the industry.

WWG: Which areas of the wine community have you drawn members from thus far? 

MC: The Hispanics in Wine team are four women with different professional careers, hailing from different countries, and different journeys in the wine industry: Lydia Richards, Ivonne Nill, Emilia Alvarez, and myself. It is important to highlight our team diversity because it allows us to understand the industry’s needs, bridging the gap for opportunities and language, and build a broad Hispanic and Latinx beverage and hospitality community.

As a result of our team’s efforts and continued outreach, we have connected with wine professionals across the United States and worldwide. We have a community that covers the spectrum of wine and hospitality. For example, we have Nial Harris García, Wine Director at the Conrad Hotel in Washington D.C., Hugo Arias, Head Sommelier at The Grill in Washington D.C., Gabriela Fernández, Marketing and Event Coordinator for a California wine producer, Jesica Vargas, Founder and Wine Blogger of AndesUncorked, DeAnna Ornelas, President of non-profit organization AHIVOY, Sam Parra, Owner of PARRA Wines Co., and many others. Our Hispanics in Wine community is growing every day, and we have received tremendous support from many wine professionals in the industry who want to help in any way possible.

WWG: How are you reaching Latinx members of the wine community in order to let them know about Hispanics in Wine?

MC: We are working with our Hispanics in Wine community to help spread the word, share the “Hispanics in Wine Spotlight Series” within their network, and notify other Hispanics and Latinx professionals about this initiative. We started Hispanics in Wine on social media, and we now have a website. We have received inquiries from individuals trying to pursue a career in wine who reached out to us via Instagram, and individuals who found our website via Google search. We have also received inquiries from other Hispanic and Latinx professionals asking how they can help with the initiative and perhaps serve as mentors.

WWG: Can you tell us about some of the initiatives that Hispanics in Wine has implemented?

MC: We launched the “Hispanics in Wine Spotlight Series,” where the team conducts virtual English and Spanish interviews with talented Hispanic and Latinx professionals in the United States and worldwide, such as sommeliers, wine producers, marketing experts, retailer owners, portfolio specialists, social influencers, and bloggers, to learn about their journey in the wine industry, speak about educational opportunities, and provide essential advice to the next generation as well as changes they want to see in the industry.

Our mission with these interviews is to inspire individuals to enter the industry, thereby increasing the talent we offer as a community. Ultimately, we want to increase pressure on companies to hire Hispanic and Latinx professionals for leadership roles, drawing from our deep well of unique backgrounds, experiences, viewpoints. According to Nielsen data, by 2023, we expect the buying power of the U.S. Latinx population to top $1.9 trillion, which is higher than the gross domestic product of countries like Australia, Spain, and Mexico. Targeting this quickly growing consumer base by aligning with Hispanic and Latinx values has never been more critical.

Through the “Hispanics in Wine Spotlight Series,” we also aim to highlight the diverse backgrounds of the Hispanic and Latinx communities in the United States and worldwide. We hail from vastly different geographies, whether Latin America, Central America, the Caribbean, Spain, or the United States; we have different traditions, we look different, and in some instances, we claim unique local languages, such as Guaraní in Paraguay, Catalan in Spain, or Quechua in Ecuador.

Additionally, with our public relations expertise, we are also working with the local and national press to include Hispanics and Latinx alcohol beverage and hospitality professionals at the forefront for feature stories and share their knowledge with key external stakeholders. In the near future, we hope to execute a program aimed at providing educational training, scholarships, and professional opportunities for advancing in the industry – both via in-house opportunities and partnerships with external organizations. Lastly, we are also looking to partner with wine companies looking to tap into the Hispanic and Latinx consumer market.

Read the full article at Forbes.

Eva Longoria Named to Television Academy Foundation Board of Directors
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Eva Longoria at a red carpet event, posing for the camera

Cris Abrego, chair of the Television Academy Foundation, TODAY announced two new chair appointees to the Foundation’s board of directors: Eva Longoria, actress, director and CEO, UnbeliEVAble Entertainment, and Ivana Kirkbride, Global Director of Content Strategy and Programming, Facebook Inc.

Longoria and Kirkbride will work alongside Abrego and Foundation board members to help further the nonprofit’s work promoting inclusion within the television industry and providing educational and professional development programs for students with diverse backgrounds. The Television Academy Foundation’s signature programs include a renowned annual internship program, media faculty conference and the College Television Awards, in addition to an extensive archive of oral histories of television legends, The Interviews.

“We are thrilled to welcome two exceedingly accomplished, inspiring and engaged trailblazers to the Foundation’s board,” said Abrego. “As leaders in their respective fields, their expertise and thought leadership will help drive the Foundation’s initiatives and champion the advancement of aspiring professionals from underrepresented communities to ensure a more inclusive, next-generation television talent pool.”

Having worked consistently in Hollywood for over 20 years, Eva Longoria has cemented herself as an industry staple known for her work both in front of and behind the camera. An award-winning actress, director, producer, entrepreneur, philanthropist and activist, Longoria has been leading the charge of diverse and female representation since her starring role in the hit ABC series Desperate Housewives. Through her production company UnbeliEVAble Entertainment, Longoria has become one the most significant trailblazers and recently renewed her overall deal with Twentieth Television. Founded in 2005, the company actively chooses purposeful projects that accurately represent the stories of the Latinx and other underrepresented communities. It was also recently announced that the company will partner with ViacomCBS’ Entertainment & Youth Group for their First Time Directors program highlighting BIPOC and women filmmakers to produce 50 films across the group’s portfolio of networks and streaming services.

Longoria has directed countless hours of television and is currently preparing to direct three feature films-the biopic Flamin’ Hot for Searchlight, workplace comedy 24/7 for Universal Pictures in which she will executive produce and star opposite Kerry Washington, and female action comedy Spa Day for Sony Pictures. Recently named by People magazine as one of the Women Changing the World, Longoria is a dedicated philanthropist and activist who has consistently lent her voice to the issues she is passionate about, ranging from immigration to STEM education. Committed to empowering Latinas everywhere, Longoria established the Eva Longoria Foundation (ELF) in 2012 to help Latinas build better futures for themselves and their families through educational programs, scholarships, mentorship and entrepreneurship. She is a founding member of TIME’S UP and co-founder of Latino Victory Fund and Momento Latino. Longoria has also been the face of L’Oreal Paris for over 15 years.

Continue to Broadway World to read the full article 

Photo Credit: Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Acura

Latinas earn $0.55 for every dollar paid to White men, a pay gap that has barely moved in 30 years
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Hispanic woman working on a tablet in a bright warehouse

By Courtney Connley, CNBC

This year, Latina Equal Pay Day falls on Oct. 29, marking how far into the new year Latinas have to work to earn the same pay white, non-Hispanic men earned the previous year.

When translated into a dollar amount, Latinas today earn, on average, just $0.55 for every dollar earned by White men, leaving them with a pay gap that surpasses that of women in all other racial groups. Over the course of a 40-year career, it’s estimated that Latinas stand to lose $1,163,920 due to the wage gap, according to data from the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC). Assuming that a Latina and her White male counterpart both start working at age 20, NWLC estimates that due to this wage gap a Latina will have to work until she’s 92 to earn what her While male peer earned by 60.

The ongoing pay disparity that Latinas face is one that has barely budged within the last 30 years, according to NWLC. In 1989, Latinas were paid just $0.52 for every dollar paid to White men. This means, that the Latina pay gap has only narrowed by a penny every decade since.

“I think there’s a lot of performative wokeness happening,” Jasmine Tucker, NWLC’s director of research, tells CNBC Make It about the Latina pay gap and why it’s barely improved over the last 30 years. “I think people are saying they care about this issue, but they’re not actually taking steps to address this issue.”

She says that while more companies are publishing reports to try and prove that they pay people in the same job fairly, it’s important to examine who these companies are hiring and what positions they’re hiring certain people for.

“I feel like there’s a lot of gaming the system in that way,” Tucker adds. ”[Companies] are like, ‘Oh well, we’re paying them the minimum wage. We’re paying them a living wage.’” But, she says, “when you’re doing the bare minimum, and then you’re also faster promoting White men into C-suite positions” then you’re not really making progress.

Today, for every 100 men promoted to manager, just 71 Latinas are promoted at the same rate, according to Lean In and McKinsey & Company’s 2020 “Women in the Workplace” report. The study describes this inequity as “the broken rung,” in which Latinas face barriers around sexism and racism that often block them from being promoted to manager.

Tucker explains that the longstanding pay disparities Latinas face have only been exacerbated by the Covid-19 crisis, with nearly three in 10 Latinas working a front-line job today, but still being underpaid for their work.

For example, Latinas make up just 7% of the overall workforce, but they account for 22% of child-care workers. On average, Latinas working full-time, year-round in child care earn just $0.88 for every dollar earned by White men in the same occupation, according to NWLC. Similarly, Latinas working as cashiers and retail salespeople earn just $0.76 for every dollar paid to a White man in the same role, and Latinas working as janitors, maids and housekeepers earn just $0.61 for every dollar paid to a White man in the same role.

“We’re depending on their labor like never before, but we’re not paying them what we owe them,” says Tucker, while adding that many of the jobs Latinas are overrepresented in are also jobs that have experienced major layoffs during the pandemic. In September, nearly one in nine Latinas were unemployed. But Tucker argues that this number is likely higher when you account for the thousands of women who’ve been forced to leave the labor force because of the overwhelming demands to work, teach and parent at the same time.

“I think there’s really a lot of suffering happening here because Latinas were already struggling to make ends meet before this crisis,” Tucker says. She adds that “if they had the [financial] cushion that some of their White male peers had,” then they would be in a much better position to weather the storms of today’s economy.

Click here to read the full article on CNBC.

Selena Gomez ‘Thrilled’ to Land First No. 1 on Top Latin Albums Chart With ‘Revelación’
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Selena Gomez pictured in an all blue dress against a blue background with a dining table in front of her filled with food and art pieces

By , Billboard

It’s the biggest week for a Latin album by a woman since 2017. Plus: Gomez is the first woman to concurrently lead Top Latin Albums & Latin Airplay in over a decade.

Selena Gomez makes a splashy entrance on Billboard’s Top Latin Albums chart as her Revelación EP debuts at No. 1 on the March 27-dated survey. Her first-ever Spanish-language effort arrives with 23,000 equivalent album units earned in the U.S. in the week ending March 18, according to MRC Data — marking the biggest week for a Latin album by a woman since 2017.

“I never go into anything expecting a No. 1 so I do not take it for granted,” Gomez tells Billboard. “It’s always a bit nerve racking before releasing any music because as artists we put so much of ourselves out there. For this EP specifically, I was the most nervous I have been in a long time because my heritage means so much to me and I have been talking about doing this for over 10 years. I wanted it to be perfect. I am thrilled to see the response from my fans and also from people who might not have listened to my other music.”

The Top Latin Albums chart ranks the most popular Latin albums of the week in the U.S. based on multimetric consumption as measured in equivalent album units. Units comprise album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). Each unit equals one album sale, or 10 individual tracks sold from an album, or 3,750 ad-supported or 1,250 paid/subscription on-demand official audio and video streams generated by songs from an album.

Biggest Week for a Latin Album by a Woman Since 2017: The seven-track Revelación was released March 12 via Interscope/IGA. Of its starting sum of 23,000 equivalent album units, album sales comprise 14,000 and the bulk of the remainder are SEA units (equaling 12.21 million on-demand streams of the set’s songs). Selena’s debut Latin project boasts the biggest week for a Latin album by a woman in nearly four years, since Shakira’s El Dorado started with 29,000 units in its first week (chart dated June 17, 2017).

“Without a doubt the most challenging aspect was having to do all of the sessions over Zoom,” Gomez adds. “We started recording the EP right before Covid shut everything down. In the beginning there were times I ended up canceling sessions because I found it so uninspiring not to be in the same room with everyone. I eventually was able to get past it and am extremely happy with how the music came together. [Producer] Tainy was very patient with me while I worked through my frustrations.”

First Album by a Woman at No. 1 on Top Latin Albums Since 2017: Revelación is the first album by a female act at No. 1 on Top Latin Albums since Shakira’s El Dorado spent its fifth and final nonconsecutive week atop the list dated Aug. 5, 2017.

Highest Debut by a Female Solo Act Since 2016: Gomez also notches the highest debut by a female solo act since Jenni Rivera’s Paloma Negra Desde Monterrey likewise debuted atop the list in November 2016. In between Rivera and Gomez, a collaborative set by two women launched at No. 1: Gloria Trevi and Alejandra Guzman’s Versus in July 2017.

Click here to read the full article on billboard.

She was American’s first Latina to captain a flight. Now, she’s a pioneer poet, too
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Linda Pauwels sitting in the pilots quarters of a plane

BY WALTER VILLA, MIAMI HERALD

In 2000, Linda Pauwels became a pioneer pilot, the first Latin woman ever to captain an American Airlines flight.

Now she’s a pioneer poet, too.

Last year, she authored “Beyond Haiku: Pilots Write Poetry.” In the 50-page book, she incorporated the contributions of 40 pilots, including her own prose. She also asked the children of pilots — ages 6 to 17 — to contribute illustrations to accompany the poems. She used the work of 18 artists.

Weston’s Liz Booker, the founder of the Aviatrix Book Review website — which details more than 500 books of all genres that feature women in aviation — was impressed with “Beyond Haiku.”

“The book is the first of its kind that I’m aware of,” said Booker, a retired Coast Guard helicopter pilot. “I’ve seen poetry books by a pilot. But I’ve never seen a collection of poems from different pilots, especially with children doing the artwork.”

Pauwels got the idea for the book last year, when the COVID-19 pandemic crippled the airline industry, leaving many families hurting. To help, Pauwels is donating all proceeds from the book to the Allied Pilots Association’s Emergency Relief and Scholarship Fund, which works in support of furloughed pilots and their families.

In the first three months since publication, Pauwels has been able to raise $2,200.

But Pauwels, a 57-year-old part-time Miami resident, has only just begun. She has written a second book, “Beyond Haiku: Women Pilots Write Poetry,” which is set to be released this summer.

She is also still an active pilot for American Airlines. In fact, on March 8, to promote International Women’s Day as well as her second poetry book, the plan is that she will captain a flight from Miami to Dallas. The entire crew will be female, including Pauwels’ first officer as well as eight flight attendants.

“The March 8 flight will bring back memories,” Pauwels said. “I was part of American’s second all-female crew in 1989. The first one was in 1987.”

COMING TO MIAMI
Born in Argentina, Pauwels lost her father when she was 6 years old. Within four months, Pauwels’ mother, Mabel, moved the family to Miami, where Linda dreamed of becoming a doctor.

But after Mabel started working at Miami International Airport as a traffic and operations agent for TACA Airlines, Pauwels’ interest in flight grew.

Pauwels, while working a night shift at the front desk of a Miami Beach hotel, was also a full-time, straight-A student at Miami Dade College’s Career Pilot/Flight Engineer program. She graduated from MDC in 1985, and American Airlines hired her in 1988 as a flight engineer on a Boeing 727.

Her interest in writing goes back a long way. In fact, she was the Orange County Register’s first aviation columnist in the mid-2000s.

Pauwels, who speaks Spanish, English and French, has a graduate degree in education. She will soon dive into Mandarin so she can be ready to resume piloting American’s post-COVID-19 flights to China.

Pauwels’ main residence is in the Dallas area, where American is headquartered. She recently got caught up in mid-February’s Texas snowstorm.

A married mother of two adult children, Pauwels and her husband were without power for four days during the storm. Outside their doors were 8 inches of snow. Inside, with the thermometer reading 37 degrees, Pauwels wrote two haikus, including:

Three mourning doves

Sit, puffy chested

Snowy bamboo fence

SOFTER SIDE OF PILOTS
Pauwels admits poetry is not known to be popular among mostly male aviators.

But she also thought writing haikus could help pilots deal with the stress of the job.

“Pilots live in a world of structure — we fly by the rules,” Pauwels said. “This book deconstructs some of that rigidity and allows the people on the other side of the cockpit doors to see that there is a softer side to the men and women who fly.”

As for her book’s artwork, Pauwels said she knew “poems alone wouldn’t cut it, and I wanted to give children an opportunity to create in their own style.”

Callista Chabot, a 17-year-old from New Hampshire, is drawing the cover illustration for Pauwels’ second book. The illustration depicts a butterfly riding on the nose of an airplane.

“I like the contrast between masculinity and femininity,” said Chabot, whose father, Jason, is a captain.

Chabot, who dreams of writing and illustrating her own children’s books one day, said she was thrilled to be selected for a book by women poets.

“I’m a strong feminist,” she said. “To get to work on a project written by women who work in a male-dominated industry is cool.”

Click here to read the full article on the Miami Herald.

New ‘In The Heights’ movie trailer teases prideful moment of Latino visibility, cast says
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In the Heights film poster

By Nicole Acevedo of NBC News

Lin-Manuel Miranda, creator of the hit Broadway musical “Hamilton,” and film director Jon M. Chu are ready to bring Latinos the “Crazy Rich Asians” moment many have been craving.

Chu, who directed “Crazy Rich Asians,” one of 2018’s biggest blockbusters, partnered with Miranda and screenwriter Quiara Alegría Hudes to adapt Miranda’s Tony-winning musical “In The Heights” into a film set to premiere June 18 in theaters and on HBO Max.

“This is a big movie musical,” Miranda said during a virtual event Saturday ahead of the premiere of the film’s newest trailers during the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards Sunday night.

“We’re so used to asking for less, just to ask to occupy space. As Latinos, we’re like, ‘Please just let us make our little movie.’ And Jon, on every step of the way, he was like, ‘Nope, this is a big movie.’ These guys have big dreams, we’re allowed to go that big,” Miranda said.

“In The Heights” tells the story of a block that’s disappearing as gentrification begins to take hold of the predominantly Latino neighborhood of New York City’s Washington Heights, where the film was shot over two years ago and where Miranda grew up. The film centers on several characters dealing with issues of family, love and community — an ode to the original musical which was highly praised for countering Latino stereotypes.

One of the film’s main characters, Nina, is a studious and ambitious young Latina who goes to Stanford University as the first person in her family to attend college, and everyone in the neighborhood admires her as the “one who made it out.”

“The struggle of the first-generation American in the Latino community is not talked about a lot because it’s almost like a privilege, but there’s a lot of identity crisis that comes with it,” said Leslie Grace, the Bronx-born Dominican singer and actress who plays Nina. “I’m so blessed to have explored that with Jon, with Lin, with Quiara and all of the cast.”

Anthony Ramos stars as Usnavi, a bodega owner, after recently appearing in the Oscar-winning film “A Star Is Born” and originating the roles of John Laurens and Philip Hamilton in “Hamilton.”

“I’ve never seen anything where there’s 75 Latinos in the middle of the street dancing and singing about pride and where they come from,” Ramos said during the virtual event. “I get emotional when I’m thinking about this movie and what it means to me and the culture,” especially one that continues to be significantly underrepresented in Hollywood films.

Click here to continue reading this article at NBC News 

Photo Credit: Warner Bros. 

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