PHOENIX, AZ – October 11, 2022 – Hosted at the Downtown Sheraton in Phoenix, Arizona, the 2022 U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) Annual Conference concluded last week as one of the Chamber’s largest gatherings ever of Hispanic businesses. Over the three-day sold-out summit, nearly 1,500 attendees from local chambers of commerce, business leaders, politicians and corporate partners from across the country descended on Phoenix to discuss the growing opportunities for Hispanic enterprises.
Currently, the more than 5 million Hispanic businesses throughout the U.S. add $2.8 trillion to the country’s GDP, ranking the U.S. Latino GDP is the fifth largest in the world, according to the Latino Donor Collaborative presented at DATOS. While impressive for its size, the U.S. Latino GDP is most noteworthy for its growth. Over the past two years, the growth of real U.S. Latino GDP averaged 5.63 percent, double the rate of the broader U.S. economy. This economic block serves as a driving force for continued economic growth and a broad basis of support for the overall U.S. economy.
During the sold-out, bipartisan, conference running October 2-4, the summit hosted 1,445 attendees, including:
● 480+ corporate visitors
● 200+ small businesses
● 140+ local chambers
● 170+ non-profits
● 55+ government agencies
The event’s agenda included a mix of panels and workshops with influential thought leaders, award winners and guest speakers from around the country.
Event highlights include: ● Town Hall with Arizona gubernatorial candidates, Katie Hobbs and Kari Lake. Refer here for the recording in English. ● Release of new survey in partnerships on ways to turn optimism into confidence for the future for business owners. ● Release of the state of the country’s Hispanic market according to DATOS and the AZ Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
● Corporation of the Year award, Raul Anaya, Bank of America
● Large Chamber of the Year, Carlos Medina, Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey
● Employee Resource Group of the Year, Belinda Chavez-Imwalle, Kroger
● Medium Chamber of the Year, Marcos Wanless Seattle Latino Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
● Small Chamber of the Year, Joe Aldaz, Colorado Springs Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
● Hispanic Business Male of the Year, Gonzalo A. de la Melena Jr., Emerging Airport Ventures
● Hispanic Business Female of the Year, Lea Marquez Peterson, Marquez Peterson Group
● Hector Barreto Sr. “Con Ganas” award, Lisa Urias, Arizona Community Foundation
● Entrepreneurial Spirit award, Maria Jose Palacio, Progeny Coffee
● LGBTQ+ Advocate of the Year, Raul Suarez Rodriguez, Merck
Key speakers include:
● USHCC President & CEO, Ramiro Cavazos
● USHCC Phoenix Chamber President & CEO, Monica Villalobos
● Phoenix Mayor and Advocate for the Hispanic community, Kate Gallego
● Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration, Isabella Casillas-Guzman
● Senior White House Advisor, Mitch Landrieu
● Under Secretary of Commerce for Minority Business Development, Don Cravins Jr.
● Chairman, NBCUniversal News Group, Cesar Conde
● CEO & President of the Arizona Coyotes, Xavier Gutierrez
“The goal of the USHCC is to elevate and position the more than 5 million Latino-owned businesses around the country, through our 260 active chambers. During this year’s Annual Conference, we shared insight in overcoming the challenges in obtaining capital, capacity and contracts, some of the most basic, yet crucial elements of scaling a successful business,” said Ramiro A. Cavazos, President & CEO of USHCC. “We’re elated to have hosted nearly 1,500 attendees at this year’s Conference and provide business owners with access to invaluable resources and effective programs. As we say in Spanish, ¡adelante!”
“It was a pleasure welcoming nearly 1,000 people to my hometown of Phoenix for this year’s Annual Conference. By bringing together leaders from public and private sectors, we were able to share knowledge and insight that will continue to empower Hispanic business owners throughout the state, and country,” explained Monica Villalobos, Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. “The energy throughout the event was palpable, and we look forward to hosting more events in the future!”
“Phoenix is one of America’s most dynamic and growing markets. In many ways, we represent the future of this country, given our diversity and economic strength,” said Xavier Gutierrez, President & CEO of the AZ Coyotes. “I applaud the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce for selecting our backyard to host their marquee annual event, which celebrates the incredible contributions of the Latino Business community. The US Latino market is critical for overall economic prosperity, which is evident across the country but nowhere more so than Phoenix.”
The conference came ahead of two key moments for the Hispanic community, including:
– The release of $52.4 billion in funds from the Bipartisan Infrastructure bill, slated for later this month, which will provide a slew of grant and loan opportunities for Hispanic business owners.
– The midterm elections on November 8, 2022, which could change political representation in states throughout the country.
Next year, the USHCC’s 2023 Annual Conference will return to the East Coast and will be hosted at the Loews Sapphire Falls Resort at Universal Orlando on September 24 – 26, 2023 in Orlando, Florida.