News Column

Latina Empresaria Day Filled with Empowerment

August 21, 2013

Staff reports -- HispanicBusiness

Sheila E. and Daisy Fuentes were inducted into the CHCC's Latinas Hall of Fame.
Sheila E. and Daisy Fuentes were inducted into the CHCC's Latinas Hall of Fame.

The California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce's Latina Empresaria Day highlights women's power.

The Empresaria event was held during CHCC's annual convention in August. Among the highlights was the induction of Daisy Fuentes and Sheila E. into the chamber's Latinas Hall of Fame.

Latina Empresaria Day focused on empowering female Hispanic entrepreneurs and business professionals. Women attended motivational panels and workshops, enjoyed a fashion show and ended with the Latina White Party featuring comedian Cristela Alonzo and 2012 Grammy nominee Trio Ellas.

"The overall feeling and message of the Latina Empresaria Day was excitement, empowerment, confidence and unity," said Brenna Butler Garcia, CEO of the San Joaquin County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Guest speaker Monica Gil, senior vice president of public relations and government relations for the Nielsen Co. shared findings about the Latina consumer.

"Hispanic women are a key growth engine of the U.S. female population," said Garcia, adding that by 2060 there will be no single-dominant ethnic group. "Latinas are overwhelmingly the decision makers for household-purchasing decisions, and they are quickly expanding their purchasing power with big-ticket items."

When it comes to business, Garcia said Hispanic women entrepreneurs are facing the same obstacles as the rest of the Hispanic enterprise community -- accessing capital, professional and educational development, and opportunity.

"Several of the workshops focused on how Latinas can gain a competitive edge in each of these areas to become better prepared and maximize opportunities to develop a successful business model," Garcia said. "I also really enjoyed the workshop series, especially hearing from panel members discussing the importance (of) uniting our chamber constituency to advance business initiatives that are important to our members."

An impromptu performance of Sheila E. rocking out on an empty trash can at the CHCC Latina Hall of Fame Luncheon was another highlight for Garcia.

"Sheila E. was truly inspiring when she spoke about her childhood trauma and how that experience translated later into her passion and drive to change her community for the better," Garcia said. "Both (Sheila E. and Daisy Fuentes) were so humble and appreciative to receive such a distinguished award from the CHCC."

Source: (c) 2013. All rights reserved.

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