News Column

Corner Office

April 24, 2102

Jesus Chavarria--Editor and Publisher

For more than 30 years, we have presented in the pages of HispanicBusiness magazine diverse individuals whose relationships with private or public markets are remarkable and intriguing. Markets and individuals in business are at the heart of what we do; we observe them, their cycles of performance, and report on their impacts on market dynamics. We report on exceptional leaders and Ms. Maria Goytisolo Hackley of Citibank is such an individual.

You have already met her on the cover. She's at the peak of her professional powers working at Citibank as a managing director of Citi's Financial Institution Group in global banking. Ms. Hackley grew up in a banking family in Cuba, which led her to study financial analysis at Georgetown University.

Often, the influence of surroundings can subtly suggest a career to take. For Linda R. Urrutia-Varhall, it was growing up near an air base. Today she has the rank of brigadier general in the Air Force and is director of intelligence of the U.S. Southern Command, helping to detect threats to the nation.

Selecting just one person for the Woman of the Year honor is never easy because each of this year's 10 nominees embodies the talents and perspective of Hispanic women who work their way into influential positions. But it is not just in the corporate and public sector that Hispanic women have influence.

"This is the opportune time for anyone to start a business," Suzanna Sanchez, recently elected board president of the National Latina Business Woman Association said. The words apply directly to Hispanic female entrepreneurs. While starting a business can be daunting, Hispanic women are succeeding. The U.S. Census Bureau forecast that the estimated 778,000 Hispanic women who own businesses would have combined revenues of $46 billion this year. A nice infusion for the economy's ongoing recovery.

Success seems to be all around as we take a look at the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. It celebrated its 35th anniversary this month, quite a notable achievement considering only a few short years ago it had fallen into disarray and had between 300 and 400 members. Today, it has 5,000 members thanks to the concerted efforts of a strong board of directors working with an energized and efficient executive staff.

One area of success that is still uncertain comes in the presidential political arena, where Republicans and Democrats alike are courting what is expected to be a large number of Hispanic voters going to the polls in November. Juan Sepulveda, who became the senior adviser on Hispanic affairs for the Democratic National Committee (DNC) in November, talks about what the DNC has been doing to court the Hispanic vote and why the Democrats believe Hispanics will vote for President Obama in November.

Source: (c) 2012. All rights reserved.

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