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OLA and OHCC leadership awards presented at Gala

Sept. 4, 2009: The Ohio Latino Affairs Commission (formerly, OCHLA) and the Ohio Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (OHCC) joined forces at the Renaissance Hotel in downtown Columbus Friday evening, to recognize Latinos and non-Latinos’ outstanding contributions in the areas of business, policy, and service.

Joanne Bailis with Andres González

The OCHLA acknowledged outstanding policy and service with The Governor’s Distinguished Hispanic Awards, which highlighted three Ohio Latino/a leaders, and The Governor’s Nuestra Familia Awards, which highlighted three Ohio non-Latino/a leaders that had done their utmost in supporting and contributing to the Latino communities in Ohio.

Six Latino/a business leaders were recognized by the OHCC for the leaders’ entrepreneurial and advocacy efforts.

With a theme of “¡Juntos!” Mary Santiago, Vice Chair of the OLA and DHO Awards Committee, exclaimed: “We are honored by the opportunity to partner with the Ohio Hispanic Chambers of Commerce to celebrate outstanding men and women, as we acknowledge their efforts and dedication to make Ohio a better place for all.”

Latino Leadership Awardees included:

GOVERNOR’S DISTINGUISHED HISPANIC OHIOANS AND NUESTRA FAMILIA AWARDS: María T. Lang (Cincinnati), Onnie Martin (Cincinnati), Rosa Torres Caskey (Dayton), María Cardona (Lorain), Dina Ferrer (Lorain), and Joanne Bailis (Cleveland).

BUSINESS AWARDS: Lourdes León (Fairfield) Business Woman of the Year; Rick Zamora (Cleveland) Business Man of the Year; Joe Santiago (Cleveland) Government Hispanic Business Advocate of the Year; Victoria Nuñes (Columbus) Corporate Advocate of the Year; Joe “Rafi” Rodríguez (Dayton) Hispanic Advocate of the Year; and Liborio Alcauter (Columbus) Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year.

The keynote speaker was U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown.

Ezra C. Escudero is the Executive Director of the OLA.

Photos courtesy of Richard Romero

Mary Santiago with Maria Cardona

Mary Santiago with Dina Ferrer





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