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Ohio Latino Affairs Commission [OCHLA] recognizes Distinguished Hispanic Ohioans, in partnership with LEON


Columbus, Oct. 11, 2013: The Ohio Latino Affairs Commission (OCHLA) and the Latino Empowerment Outreach Network [LEON] presented the Governor’s Distinguished Hispanic Awards in conjunction with the LEON Awards, an event “to recognize and honor individuals and organizations who have demonstrated outstanding achievements in the professional or community service endeavors, and who serve as role models for the growing Hispanic community in Ohio.”

The awards gala will took place at the Hilton Downtown Hotel in Columbus on Friday, October 11, 2013.  Under the theme “Unidos,” OCHLA and LEON highlighted the contributions of statewide and local leaders.

Lilleana Cavanaugh


Luis Danyel Falcón sang the national anthem; Karen Labra sang various mariachi songs; and Ohio State University Folklor Hispano performed various traditional dances.  Donna M. Alvarado was the keynote speaker.


The Ohio Latino Affairs Commission is an organization that advises state government on issues affecting Latino Ohioans, connects the diverse Latino communities across the state, and builds the capacity of community organizations so they may better serve the fast growing Latino population of Ohio.    OCHLA is directed by Lilleana Cavanaugh.    Its board of directors includes: Michael Florez (Chair), Rev. Max Rodas, Richard Romero, Mary Santiago, Iris Martínez Juergens, Luis “Tony” Ortiz, V. Anthony Simms-Howell, and Baldemar Velásquez.    


LEON was established in 2000, as a network and a collaboration of individuals, organizations and agencies dedicated to building a healthy Latino community in Central Ohio through the development and support of programs that educate and empower Latinos. The organization’s main focus areas are on health, education, advocacy, and outreach.  LEON’s president is Lourdes Barroso de Padilla.      


The Gala-event’s committee includes: Mary Santiago, Lourdes Barroso de Padilla, Lilleana Cavanaugh, Thalia Amador, Melissa Cárdenas, and Lair Marin-Marcum.


Award recipients are:


~ Distinguished

Hispanic Ohioans ~
Benito Lucio, Columbus

Marilyn Zayas-Davis, Cincinnati
Nancy Méndez, Cleveland
Victor García, Dayton

Angel Arroyo, Lorain
Israel A. Barrios, Lorain
Luis Santiago, Toledo


~ Latino Military Service of Distinction ~

Dr. Manuel Caro, Sgt., Marine Corps (Retired)             
Henry Guzmán., Sgt., US Army (Retired)
Louis Torres, Sgt. US Army (Fallen Hero)                                      


~ Nuestra Familia ~
Richard Herman, Cleveland
Lois Poe Rust, Cincinnati
The Limited Brands, Columbus


~ Special Recognition ~
 Michael Colbert, Director, Ohio Department of Job & Family Services


~ Alma de la Comunidad Award [Presented by LEON] ~

Maritza Motino, Central Ohio


For questions regarding this event, contact 614-728-8344 or visit http://ochla.ohio.gov



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Revised: 10/15/13 15:53:44 -0700.




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