The 20th anniversary of Hispanic Women of Distinction anticipated a sell-out, and that it did! Celebrated on September 10th at the Signature Grand, hundreds of guests enjoyed the meticulously executed charity luncheon presented by Latina Style Magazine in partnership with Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center.
“We are thrilled to kick-off Hispanic Heritage Month in south Florida with this annual celebration of Hispanic-American women who are strengthening the social fabric of this country, ” said Elaine Miceli-Vasquez, event co-founder. Her late husband, Erwin M. Vasquez, M.D. created the luncheon to bring awareness to the contributions of Latinas in the community, honoring their culture and traditions and their philanthropic spirit. A special proclamation issued by State Representative Marie Woodson was read to the audience to commemorate the 20th anniversary.
Guests were treated to a complimentary MoTITO, by Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Latin entertainment, a fantastic silent auction benefiting HANDY, a non-profit that has met the needs of more than 50,000 children in foster care and a business expo during the cocktail hour. The ballroom doors opened to a spectacular room design, the annual parade of former honorees, customized gift bags for each guest and a fabulous gourmet lunch.
A first-time concert, featuring Grammy winner, flautist, Nestor Torres along with the Bobby Rodriguez Orchestra entertained the guests prior to announcing the 2021 honorees.
The first award, Latina Pioneer of the Year was presented to Omaida Velazquez, M.D. Professor and Chair, Department of Surgery University of Miami Miller School of Medicine Surgeon-in-Chief, University of Miami Health System & Jackson Health System, followed by the first-ever UP & COMER award, to 20 year old Juliette Ashley Valle, whose impressive community service was applauded by all in attendance..
The 2021 honorees walking the 160 foot runway, were introduced one by one to the audience by Mistress of Ceremonies, Myriam Masihy, on-air reporter with NBC6 / Telemundo.
The 2021 honorees are: Melida Akiti, Yineth Sanchez Aslan, Maria Antuna, Erbi Blanco-True, Jacqueline Lopez-Devine, Thayra Hausheer, Heidi Alzate Kaufman, Jessica Marra, Jaene Miranda, Lubby Navarro, Kimberly Valentin, and Carolina Veira.
More than 45 sponsors and numerous media partners contributed to the success of this milestone celebration. “We are grateful for all the guests, advertisers, benefactors and corporate partners who demonstrate their commitment to diversity”, stated Miceli-Vasquez. ”