Paving A Path, Encouraging Generations
Over the past fifty years or so, society in the United States has changed significantly. With the women’s movement, females have been able to break out of the domestic role and step outside the home to find a career of their own. However, many obstacles still remain and the challenges women face can be vast, especially to women of a minority.
One incredible man recognized the tremendous accomplishments of the Latin community and created a prestigious event to pay homage to these amazing women. Dr. Erwin Vasquez founded The Hispanic Women of Distinction Charity Luncheon back in 2001. The luncheon is held to recognize honorees that are believed to be making a difference in the community and in their everyday lives.Although he is no longer with us, his beautiful wife Elaine Vasquez not only continued his tradition but has poured her heart and soul into every detail, allowing for its tremendous success.
Last week was the 17th anniversary of the event that was held to honor Latina women who have diligently worked to change history and pave the way for a better America. With over 70 nominees, it was a challenging mission to narrow down the award winners. Each phenomenal woman proves daily that minorities are a thing of the past, as we grow into a diverse world.
With over 900 guests, the luncheon celebrated 12 award winners for their efforts. The event not only featured an incredible meal but the entertainment was a glorious fashion show that was put on by designer Karina Herrera, a previous award winner. Inspired by the luxury and versatility of Versace, Karina’s designs offers a more affordable option without sacrificing sexiness or elegance. Her fabrics and unique design pieces took months to create and the end result looked flawless on the runway. She epitomizes what this entire event represents, a true leader in not only the Latin community, but for women everywhere.
But the success of this event can also be shown through it’s silent auction. A unbelievable $14,600 was raised during the one hour auction for Habitat for Humanity, an organization that builds homes for low income families. In addition, $5000 was donated to the Light of the World Clinic, a not-for-profit medical facility founded by the late Dr. Vasquez himself. And lastly, a $1000 check was presented to Kakes for Kids, an organization that creates birthday parties for foster children. All of these are non-profit organizations set out to change the world through compassion and dedication and the Luncheon’s raised donations are sure to help them continue their missions.
With such an elaborate showcase of leadership, the high fashion runway event, and the charity collections and auctions, there was an unbelievable amount of details to keep track of and maintain. Only someone that truly understands its necessity could keep this flawlessly organized like the gears in a clock. Year after year, Elaine Vasquez keeps her husband vision alive and continues to grow the luncheon’s success and visibility.
The carefully chosen co-hosts for the event, Angela Posillio and Carlos Anaya, both understood not only the show’s mission but were entertaining and engaging. The chemistry between them brought a fun and enjoyable flow to the evening as they introduced guests and discussed their successes.
Angela has a grace and poise that is both mesmerizing and admirable. Founder of the Ms. Latina International and Ms. International World Pageants, Angela sees tremendous dedication and persistence in Latina women at a very young age planning for their future dreams and taking steps to make a difference in the world. She not only co-hosted the event, and worked closely with Elaine but she also helped to coordinate the fashion show. The classiness she brought to the stage and her well documented success as a strong leader and successful business woman, both demonstrated exactly what the event represented, Latina women paving the way for young ladies and leaving a legacy of strength and perseverance.
Carlos Anaya, graced the stage with his dapper style and charismatic charms. No stranger to the camera as he is a reporter, host, multimedia producer, and social media influencer. As the founder of Anaya Media and Cafecito Espiriutal, and an air contributor for multiple national shows, Carlos has an understanding to just how significant the impact of the Latin community has on the world today. He explains that the US Hispanic market is vital for brands to reach out to because they currently have over a trillion dollars in purchasing power and that number will most likely continue to rise. The Hispanic Women of Distinction Luncheon offers a non competitive platform to launch brands. His excitement at the microphone paralleled his belief in the necessity of the event.
The Hispanic Women of Distinction Luncheon’s vibe was exhilarating and listening to the stories for the honorees and how they are leaving a legacy for young women to follow is admirable. It would be near impossible to leave the luncheon without feeling motivated and excited about conquering goals and impacting our society in a positive way. Dr. Erwin Vasquez and Elaine Vasquez are pioneers and true missionaries, ensuring that hard work, dedication and passion is recognized, awarded, and encouraged in a unique and memorable way. Seeing who will grace the Top 12 list next year is an exciting thing to contemplate.