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Speakers & Special Guests

We were honored to have the speakers below for the 2008 conference.
Check back soon for our special guests in 2009.

Rosa Rosales was re-elected LULAC National President on July 14, 2007 at LULAC’s 78th National Convention in Chicago. She was first elected July 1, 2006 at LULAC’s 77th National Convention. She leads the largest and oldest Hispanic civil rights organizations in the United States.

Ms. Rosales is the Founder and Director of the National Association of Public Employees (NAPE), a San Antonio based union. Prior to holding this position, Ms. Rosales served as Office Director of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) from 1997-99.
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Lydia Aranda is Vice President & Regional Director of Diverse Segments for Wells Fargo, overseeing strategic growth and business development in Arizona, New Mexico and Nevada.

Prior to joining Wells Fargo Ms. Aranda served under Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano for several years as Governor’s Small Business Advocate, Executive Director of the Governor’s Small Business Council, and as Director of Small Business Services for the Arizona Department of Commerce. In her current role with Wells Fargo, Ms. Aranda works closely with business and community leaders, focusing on the emerging and diverse markets throughout the southwest.

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Mary Castillo is the author of three novels – Switchcraft, In Between Men and Hot Tamara – and her novellas have appeared in the anthologies, Names I Call My Sister and Friday Night Chicas. Her feature stories have appeared in national magazines such as Rise Up, Latino Future and LatinaVoz. She welcomes readers to her website at www.marycastillo.com

Henry Cejudo, U.S. Olympic Gold Champion and his Mom Nelly Rico

BEIJING -- Henry Cejudo called it the American dream.

The son of undocumented Mexican immigrants who had to work two jobs to keep food on the table, Cejudo gave the U.S. its first Olympic gold medal in freestyle wrestling in Beijing Tuesday with a stunning win over Japan's Tomohiro Matsunaga in the 55-kilogram (121 pounds) final.

Barbara J. DesMarteau is the Director of the Adams County Community & Economic Opportunity Department that includes the Workforce & Business Center, Community Development, and Head Start.  Adams County is located in the Denver metro area and includes a population of over 400,000 residents.
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Ann Marie Gonzalez - A woman weighed down with tragic childhood memories, diagnosed with cervical cancer, felt as if her life was spiraling out of control.  Ann Marie Gonzalez is no different than any other woman struggling with the pain, anger and guilt we all carry from our past.  Most live out their lives never fulfilling their full potential, accepting the deck of cards they are dealt with without so much as a whimper.  Gonzalez sets herself apart because she chose life and not death.  She was shown how to open up, listen and feel Divine Guidance during an out of body experience, where she was miraculous healed.  What started as an exercise in Channeling the Divine, turned into a cathartic experience liberating her through the writing of Divine For Life, an inspiring guide leading us to let go of the pains of our past, reminding us of our Divinity and teaching us how to manifest our hearts desires. 
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Thelma Gutierrez is a CNN correspondent based in Los Angeles. Since she joined the network in 2001, Gutierrez has traveled to Kuwait and Mexico on assignment. She has reported on numerous issues including human trafficking, immigration and on the trials and tribulations facing those currently serving in the U.S. armed forces.

Previously, Gutierrez was a special assignment correspondent at CBS Los Angeles affiliate, KCBS-TV. She reported on medical issues and served as a contributor to the award-winning, weekly investigative newsmagazine, 30 Minutes of Special Assignment.

 
  Lydia has been involved with empowering communities for the past 17 years since her early days of walking precincts in Los Angeles County.

In California, former member of CHIRLA (Coalition for Humane Immigrants Rights of Los Angeles) since it's inception in late 80's.

When in Los Angeles, she was part of a state-wide effort to assist more than 9,000 legal permanent residents become US citizens in the post prop 187 era.  She received statewide mention in the LA Times.  She also tracked their swearing in ceremonies to ensure their voter registration

 Ricky Lizalde isn't crying about being eliminated from Bravo’s Project Runway. He’s instead moving forward. In fact, he talks to us from his basement while preparing to headline a fashion event in his hometown of Escondido, Ca, the city where he and his 13 brothers and sisters grew up with their Mexican – and strict Catholic – parents. The 35-year-old reveals that this heritage is reflected in his creations, from his clothing to his personally-designed tattoos, the most noticeable of these being a Virgen de Guadalupe image permanently engraved on his shoulder. Lizalde even designs his own hats, an accessory he was never without while on the show.
 Adriana Comellas-Macretti is part of the Executive Department. In her role as a Director she manages State Farm’s relationship with its Goodwill Ambassador Julie Stav and several Hispanic partner organizations. She also works with the Human Resources, Agency Recruiting and other departments in helping them with their strategies in recruiting, retention, and development of multicultural associates. From 2004-February 2006, Adriana was part of the Multicultural Business Development Group where she helped develop strategies and tactics including recruiting bilingual agents and associates. 
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  Maria Marin is an author, radio host, a national newspaper columnist and an international motivational speaker. She is considered one of the leading motivational trainers on the subject of “Personal Empowerment” and “The Art of Negotiation”. Her captivating presentations and compelling messages have earned this worldwide acclaimed speaker many honors that identify her as one of the most powerful, charismatic and persuasive voices for self-improvement today.
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 Kathy Cano-Murillo, the Crafty Chica, has built an international career out of her love for making and teaching art. After selling her work to stores like Bloomingdales, Target.com and hundreds of  boutiques around the country, Kathy launched a crusade to inspire other women to get crafty.

Her award-winning web site, CraftyChica.com, receives more than 50,000 unique visitors a month and has been praised by NPR, USA Today, Latina Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, and dozens of other media outlets. She writes a nationally syndicated newspaper column, hosts her own series on LifetimeTV.com, is the author of seven creativity books, leads a craft cruise on Carnival, and teaches art workshops around the country.
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  Julie Stav, Financial Expert & New York Times Best-Selling Author

For the more than 41 million Hispanics in the United States, Julie Stav is the financial expert. With a revolutionary multi-media communications platform, Julie inspires and empowers people from all walks of life through her wildly popular national radio show, “Tu Dinero con Julie Stav”; her New York Times bestselling books; and her latest endeavor launched in June 2007: Tu Dinero, a cutting edge digital publication that delivers the best and most relevant financial news to the Hispanic community faster than ever before.  But there is more to Julie’s story than most people know – unfortunately a troubled childhood threatened to doom her to a life of failure and despair, but thankfully her tenacity ultimately propelled her to unbounded success.
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2009 Registration
Coming Soon

Be sure to attend this year's Fashion Show



Free On-site Expo
Free Expo - Open to Public
2009 Expo Open to Public
Oct 1st - 2nd



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