News Column

LULAC National Convention and Job Fair Opens June 29

June 22, 2012


The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) will be hosting its 83rd annual national convention, exposition and job fair from Monday, June 25, through Friday, June 30, in Orlando, Fla.

This year's theme hits the target: "America's Latino Community -- Center Stage."

LULAC will provide its supporters with tons of great speakers discussing relevant and pertinent topics affecting the Hispanic community.

Highlights include: Dr. Jill Biden, second lady of the United States, who will be the honored guest speaker at a Community Service Breakfast on June 28; and Attorney General Eric Holder, who will be a keynote speaker at the Unity Luncheon along with George Sheldon, acting assistant secretary at the Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Returning for her second year in a row is Labor Secretary Hilda Solis.

"We are bringing a very diverse and respected group of dignitaries and leaders to Orlando," said Brent Wilkes, LULAC executive director. "Central Florida is home to more than half a million Latinos -- one of the fastest-growing Hispanic communities in the country. Florida's Latino population is the third largest in the nation, and this diverse Latino community is redefining the social, political and cultural landscape of the I-4 corridor and it creates the ideal setting for the LULAC national convention."

Other confirmed speakers are Liz Montoya, U.S. Office of Personnel Management; Lisa Pino, acting assistant secretary in the Office of Civil Rights, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture; and John U. Sepulveda, assistant secretary in the U.S. Dept. of Veteran Affairs; Leon Rodriguez, director in the Office of Civil Rights, Health and Human Services; Alejandro N. Mayorkas, director of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services; Wade Henderson, president and CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights; and Dr. Howard Koh, assistant secretary for Health at the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services.

HispanicBusiness will interview Lupe De La Cruz, PepsiCo's senior director of government affairs, following his speech at the LULAC Women's Luncheon, which will celebrate Latinas' important role in today's business world and society. HispanicBusiness will ask De La Cruz about PepsiCo's work with the Hispanic community through La Promesa de PepsiCo, PepsiCo's Hispanic corporate initiative. (Expect to see the interview the week following the LULAC convention.)

This year's convention will feature LULAC's voter registration and mobilization campaign, which encompasses an on-the-ground grass-roots effort to engage thousands of volunteers located in more than 25 states and 40 cities. As part of these efforts, LULAC will be hosting a town hall on the Latino vote, moderated by Homan Machuca, senior reporter for Telenoticias Orlando and contributor to the Election 2012 team on

"As the nation's premier Latino gathering, our convention attracts more than 20,000 participants for a week filled with renowned speakers, seminars and entertainment," Wilkes said.

The 2012 LULAC Expo will feature 300 corporate partners, government agencies, colleges and universities, labor unions, armed forces, and nonprofit organizations displaying their products and services while recruiting Hispanic employees at the LULAC Career Fair. Other events that are free and open to the public include a health fair offering free screenings, and the Concierto de la Gente, featuring Tito Nieves and Jesse & Joy, among others.

As an organization with a large membership in Puerto Rico and a large number of members here in the mainland U.S., LULAC will host a town hall on the future of Puerto Rico for the second year in a row and will be joined by distinguished guests from the White House, Michael Strautmanis, deputy assistant to the president and counselor for strategic engagement to the senior adviser, and James Albino of the Domestic Policy Council. Other members from the president's task force on the status of Puerto Rico will also join LULAC at the convention.

In addition, the LULAC convention hosts the Federal Training Institute (FTI), an intensive and structured career-development program open to all government employees. This year, the FTI will also host concurrent community briefings/workshops for job seekers looking for opportunities in the federal government. The community workshops are free of charge and are open to all veterans and the Orlando Metropolitan area community.

The convention will take place at the Disney Coronado Springs Resort and Convention Center.

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Source: (c) 2012. All rights reserved.

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