Posted by: Latinos Progresando
July 27, 2017
In years past, MEX talks has attracted as many as 300 professionals, philanthropists, and community residents, while reaching a broader digital audience, domestically and abroad. And because students receive a discounted ticket rate, MEX talks operates as a special medium to engage directly with Chicago’s emerging Latino leaders.
The 5th annual MEX talks will take place at the historic Goodman Theatre—a venue that is hailed as “America’s Best Regional Theater” (Time magazine) and “Chicago’s flagship resident stage” (Chicago Tribune), and is distinguished by the quality of its artistic programming and civic engagement. We are also extremely excited that this year’s one-of-a-kind speaker series will be headlined by the award-winning journalist, Maria Hinojosa, who has risen to prominence over the decades on the NPR-distributed program Latino USA.
Maria Hinojosa Futuro Media Group, Headline Speaker
Maria Hinojosa is an award-winning journalist who created the Futuro Media Group and is renowned for anchoring and producing the NPR-distributed audio program, Latino USA. Through her work, Maria has informed millions about the changing cultural and political landscape in America and abroad, in particular reporting on immigrants, Latinx, and underreported populations. She is the author of two books and has won dozens of awards including four Emmys. She is currently the Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz Chair of Latin American and Latino Studies at DePaul University in Chicago.
Carlos Ramirez-Rosa 35th Ward, City of Chicago
Carlos Ramirez-Rosa is a lifelong Chicagoan who has worked as a community organizer with the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, a congressional caseworker for U.S. Congressman Luis Gutierrez, and, since May 2015, as the Alderman for the Thirty-Fifth Ward in Chicago. As an Alderman, Carlos has led legislative efforts to win property tax relief, paid sick leave for Chicago workers, and equality for transgender people in public facilities. Carlos received his high school diploma from Chicago’s Whitney M. Young Magnet High School, and his B.A. degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Reyna Hernandez Community Strategist
Reyna Hernandez is a longtime community advocate who supports education, leadership development, and capacity building in the Latino community. She currently provides strategic support to nonprofits and startups in Chicago, as well as to school districts as a Changemaker with Innovare SIP. She is an adjunct faculty member at DePaul University, teaching on issues of Latinos, English learners, and education. Reyna has previously served as an Assistant Superintendent at ISBE, a Research and Policy Associate at the Latino Policy Forum, a Community Education Parent Facilitator at Waukegan CUSD 60, and an educational director and trustee at the National Hispanic Institute.
Sergio Suarez North American Institute for Mexican Advancement
Sergio D. Suárez is a successful business owner and President/CEO of the North American Institute for Mexican Advancement (NAIMA). Sergio is an immigrant from Juanacatlán, Jalisco, Mexico, where he attended school and tended to his family’s farm. Settling in Chicago at the age of 17, Sergio began his career working in a factory, while attending night classes to acquire a refrigeration technician certification. Sergio established his first company shortly thereafter and went on to establish a dozen more successful groups in both the U.S. and Mexico. He has been recognized with several honors for his leadership and community-focused work.
Adolfo Hernandez J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Family Foundation
Adolfo Hernandez is the Director of the Pritzker Community Health Initiative for the J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Family Foundation, where he leads the foundation’s efforts to reduce health disparities for all Chicagoans. Prior to his current role, Adolfo served as the inaugural Director of the Mayor’s Office of New Americans and most recently as the Deputy Director of the Mayor’s Office of Public Engagement. The White House recognized him as a “Champion of Change” for his work to integrate and welcome immigrants in Chicago. The son of Mexican immigrants, Adolfo was born and raised in Chicago’s Little Village community.
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