This week marks the end of Hispanic Heritage Month, a period of time in the United States when we celebrate and honor all the impact and achievements of Hispanic Americans. At Genius Plaza, we are firm believers that representation matters, so showing our children the impact Latino Americans have made throughout United States history helps them see the possibilities. Those possibilities were on display September 15th through October 15th, as several companies and groups put on events I was able to attend.
In New York City, Google, NBC4, and Telemundo 47 hosted a discussion on how Latinos have shaped New York’s culture and arts scene. The evening was filled with great discussions from Assemblyman Marcos Crespo, Rosal Colón from Orange is the New Black, Henry Muñoz from the National Museum of the American Latino Commission, Professor Frances Negrón-Muntaner from Columbia University, and Daniel Gallant from the Nuyorican Poets Cafe. The Ballet Hispánico also made an appearance. The event coincided with the launch of Google’s amazing exhibit on Latinos in the US, which I would encourage everyone to take a look at!
Ogilvy’s LatinRed and Unilever held series of events to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Several of the events centered on fundraisers for Puerto Rico, to help them recover from the devastation from Hurricane Maria, and Mexico, recovering from the series of earthquakes that struck. One of my favorite events was the kickoff, which covered the increase of Latinos in advertising within the industry, and its impact on the way agencies approach the creative work of ad campaigns. The panel was made up of Alfie Vivian from Unilever, Yvette Baez from Univision, and Lucinda Martinez from HBO. Alfie made an amazing point: as Latinos assert themselves economically, it will force companies to reflect that reality politically. So, the best way to bring about that change is to think twice about Latino purchasing decisions.
Finally, at Genius Plaza, we began Hispanic Heritage Month celebrating the impact that our Latino Learning Champions have had on our students. Within those thirty days, we have added more inspiring STEAM career professionals. We invite you to take a look, and reach out if you have other Latin professionals who can inspire our children to “be the change they want to see in the world.”