WASHINGTON - The United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) has announced appointments to its Regional Chair positions as well as Finance Chair and Secretary for the nation's largest Hispanic business organization.
The appointments complete the leadership team announced at the USHCC's national convention in Dallas, where record-breaking attendance of business owners, corporate executives and Hispanic Chamber of Commerce representatives from across the country participated.
"The appointments of these successful business leaders strengthens the leadership of our USHCC Board of Directors," says Board Chair Nina Vaca-Humrichouse. "These accomplished professionals bring a wealth of experience and expertise that makes our board more effective in fulfilling the USHCC's mission to serve our core constituencies: Hispanic Business Enterprises, Hispanic chambers of commerce and our corporate partners."
Martha Montoya, President of California-based Los Kitos Entertainment LLC, is appointed to the Chairmanship of the USHCC's Western region (Region I), which encompasses California, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Idaho, Alaska and Hawaii. Montoya has forged relationships with leaders in corporate America and has previously chaired several committees, particularly in the field of procurement and access to capital, both within the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce. Montoya has a long history of advocating on behalf of minority-owned businesses, with both the public and private sectors.
Don Salazar, President of Creative Times, Inc. and CTI Construction Company, is appointed to the Chairmanship of the USHCC's Mountain West region (Region 2), which encompasses Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Colorado, Nebraska, Arizona and New Mexico. Salazar co-founded the Ogden-Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in 2005 and presently serves as its Chair, and sits on the Utah Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors. He is a past president of the Northern Utah Public Employees Association; an appointee to the State Council on Workforce Services; a member of the Utah Hispanic/Latino Legislative Taskforce and several other community action groups.
Marc Rodriguez, President of Tope Development Corp. and the owner of The Offices of Marc A. Rodriguez, a government relations consulting firm, was appointed as Chairman of the USHCC Board of Directors Bylaws Committee and was also appointed to the Chairmanship of the USHCC's Central region (Region 3), which encompasses Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas and Louisiana. Rodriguez has worked on state legislative issues for the last nine consecutive state legislative sessions in Texas and has a professional history of representing entities with elected and appointed boards. As a professional advocate, Rodriguez has specific expertise in public policy issues including utility regulation, infrastructure, healthcare and natural resources. Rodriguez was recently honored at the Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce's Capital of Texas Awards as the recipient of the Service Award, presented by Texas Secretary of State Esperanza "Hope" Andrade.
David Gomez, founder of David Gomez & Associates (DG&A) is appointed Finance Chair of the USHCC as well as to the Chairmanship of the USHCC's Midwest region (Region 4), which represents Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Kentucky. Gomez has dedicated his knowledge and expertise to increasing the visibility of Latinos in Corporate America. His experience spans across the areas of executive search and corporate board placement and, through his work, has helped Latinos reach the highest ranks of the corporate ladder. Gomez has partnered with both public and private entities on executive placements for both board and senior executive positions.
Elizabeth Chalas Berman, President of Continental Food and Beverage, Inc. (CF&B), the exclusive bottler of Inca Kola in the United States, is appointed to the Chairmanship of the USHCC's Northeast & Mid-Atlantic region (Region 5), which represents West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, District of Columbia, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine. Berman has been honored as the 2009 BMW Ultimate Latina by the USHCC, 2009 Business Woman of the Year by the New York State Federation of Hispanic Chambers of Commerce and received the 2009 Women of Excellence Award from the New York Women's Chamber of Commerce.
Ignacio Veloz, President of the United Retailers Association of Puerto Rico, is appointed to the Chairmanship of the USHCC's Southeast region (Region 6) and will represent Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida and Puerto Rico. Veloz has been recognized for his achievements in the area of Corporate Social Responsibility by the WIC Program Business Owners Association and the Puerto Rican League Against Cancer. Prior to being elected to the USHCC Board of Directors, Veloz presided over several committees such as the Mercury Awards, Convention, Young Entrepreneurs and the Congress of Retail Commerce of the Americas.
Gabriel Pascual, President of Iberica International Corporation and Vice President of PascualDairy, Inc., the US division of Leche Pascual of Spain, the largest family-owned dairy company in Europe, is appointed as Secretary of the USHCC. In the last two decades, Pascual has established over a dozen enterprises in the U.S., Central America and Europe, all specialized in international trade development and distribution; both in the for-profit and not for-profit areas. Currently, he serves his community as member of the board and Secretary of the USHCC, and Vice Chairman of the Latin American Hemispheric Congress of Chambers of Commerce for the US Latin Chamber of Commerce "CAMACOL" among others.
"This year's appointees set the tone for a new era of leadership at the USHCC," says Javier Palomarez, USHCC President and CEO. "Their strategic thinking and innovative approaches will leave a lasting impact on our organization. They are essential to supporting our mission of enhancing business opportunities for Latino entrepreneurs in the global economy."
About the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Founded in 1979, the USHCC actively promotes the economic growth and development of Hispanic entrepreneurs and represents the interests of nearly 3 million Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States that generate nearly $400 billion annually. It also serves as the umbrella organization for more than 200 local Hispanic chambers in the United States and Puerto Rico.