Awardees to receive Latina Living Legend & Emerging Latina Leader Awards
The DFW Hispanic 100, a network of Dallas/Ft. Worth area Hispanic women leaders working to increase business and leadership opportunities for Latinas, will honor Lupita Colmenero with its 2019 Latina Living Legend (LLL) Award and Rebecca Acuña with its inaugural Emerging Latina Leader Award (ELLA).
The LLL award recognizes the lifetime commitment of a DFW area Latina who has distinguished herself through her profession, active community and civic participation, volunteerism, and/or philanthropic endeavors.
“Lupita has dedicated a lifetime to helping to change the narrative of the Hispanic community through mass media,” said Lucinda Rocha, President of the DFW Hispanic 100. “She celebrated our culture before doing so was popular, and used her publications to create positive role models for our families. In helping Latino owned businesses and publications thrive, Lupita has helped our families to thrive. She has touched the lives of not only those close to her, but also countless others who have been moved by her words and actions.”
Lupita Colmenero is the Co-Founder and Publisher of El Hispano News, the oldest Spanish language newspaper in North Texas, as well as the Executive Vice President of LATINA Style Inc., the first national magazine dedicated to the needs of Latina professionals. A nationally respected expert on parenting and educational issues, Colmenero serves as the President and Founder of Parents Step Ahead, a Dallas-based nonprofit which engages parents in their children’s educational development and has served more than 50,000 families to date. She has served on numerous nonprofit boards, including the Cuban National Council and the National Association on Corporate Responsibility. In 2005 she was the first woman elected President of the National Association of Hispanic Publications Inc., where she championed the cause of minority owned businesses and prioritized training and mentoring Hispanic publications.
The ELLA award recognizes a Latina professional making an impact on women and girls through her engagement and leadership in her community and profession.
“Rebecca deeply believes in mentorship and aims to knock down obstacles for the next generation,” added Rocha. “She aims to create the personal and professional networks to help others thrive both in her corporate role and in her community efforts. Her volunteer efforts are centered on her passion of leveling the political playing field for women and communities of color.”
Rebecca Acuña is a Director of Government Affairs for PepsiCo where she represents the global portfolio of food and beverage brands before public policy makers and opinion leaders in seven states. Prior to joining PepsiCo, she was the Executive Director of the Latino Center for Leadership Development. Rebecca has also served in leadership roles in political campaigns and federal and state government in Washington, D.C. and Texas. A veteran of the Texas State capitol, Rebecca has served as a Chief of Staff and Communications Director for three members of the Texas House of Representatives and one Member of Congress. She was the first Latina tapped as statewide Press Secretary for a major-party gubernatorial campaign in Texas. In January, Rebecca received the Ellis Island Honors Society’s Beacon Award which recognizes young Americans, who are considered influencers, and highlights immigrants as important contributors to the United States. Rebecca serves on the Board of Directors for the Workforce Solutions of Greater Dallas, The ChildCareGroup of Dallas, IGNITE Texas State Council, and the League of Women Voters of Greater Dallas where she is also a Co-Chair of the Susan B. Anthony Luncheon.
Colmenero’s and Acuña’s contributions to Dallas area Latinos will be recognized during a reception on October 10, 2018 from 5:30 to 7:30 pm at Vouv Event Center located at 4445 Sigma Rd. in Dallas. The proceeds benefit the H100 Latina Giving Circle.
Past honorees of the Latina Living Legend award have included some of the most prominent Latina leaders in North Texas such as the honorable Anita N. Martinez, Gloria Campos, Adelfa B. Callejo, Dr. Gloria Contreras, Dolores Gomez Barzune, Dr. Catalina Garcia, Sheriff Lupe Valdez, Dr. Michele Bobadilla, Bea Salazar, and Mercedes Olivera – who was honored posthumously.