'Winds of Opportunity' resonate through the Windy City leaving a formidable impression on the thousands of student and professional attendees
DALLAS, Oct. 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Midnight, Saturday, October 23, marked the close of another successful and impactful National Society of Hispanic MBAs (NSHMBA) Conference and Career Expo, this year being held in downtown Chicago's McCormick Place.
Like conferences past, attendance this year was unparalleled and attracted more than 7,200 attendees from the academic and professional sectors. From current students and newly minted graduate students to the seasoned professional, each came to interact, network, learn and enhance their career paths – something for which the NSHMBA organization is renowned.
Lead sponsors for this year's event included Humana, State Farm and The Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame, and also more than 290 corporate, academic, non-profit and government sponsors who had booths on the career expo floor.
Pre-conference events began on Wednesday with the NSHMBA CEO reception presented by Accenture's Executive Director of Supply Chain Practice, Jose T. Morales. Thursday – officially the first day of the conference – was host to a full day of seminars, workshops, and networking events, known as Professional Development Day, presented by such notable companies as Target, sponsor of the day's opening general session on Health and its impact within the company and communities, followed by Best Buy, McDonald's, Sears Holding, Hewitt, Vanguard, Pitney Bowes and IBM, all hosting breakout sessions on topics of career development, diversity, finance, global management, leadership, marketing and strategy.
Moctesuma Esparza, award-winning filmmaker and producer, closed the Comcast-sponsored general session.
No time for idle time, Friday began with the NSHMBA CEO Speaker Series and its breakfast sponsored by Sara Lee Corporation. Presenting was CJ Fraleigh, CEO of North American Retail and Foodservice, and drew a turnout of more than 1,200 attendees for the early morning event. Other speakers for the day's sessions included Edward B. Rust, State Farm CEO; Douglas R. Conant, Campbell Soup Company CEO; and Craig Herkert, SuperValu Inc CEO. Coinciding with the CEO Speaker Series was the Executive Forum sponsored by SunTrust Bank, including a keynote by Humana, and sessions on Power and Influence and Trends in Corporate and Non-profit Directorship.
Also on Friday morning was the official ribbon cutting, where NSHMBA CEO Manny Gonzalez, Chair of NSHMBA Board of Director Mark Ponce, and Commissioner for Business Affairs and Consumer Protection for the City of Chicago Norma Reyes, together with this year's lead sponsors, recognized the 2010 Conference & Career Expo and opened the expo floor.
Gonzalez noted the great work and efforts of the sponsors, attendees and staff, who each year go above and beyond to ensure a great event.
"I am really awe-stricken at the concerted effort and work that go into pulling off our annual conference & career expo," said Gonzalez. "To onlookers, attendees are given exactly what they are seeking; to the insiders – the sponsors, the staff, and the organizers – this is an amazing example of dedication, support, passion and sheer loyalty. We cannot thank everyone enough for making such a great event possible."
Other notable events included the Entrepreneurial Success Program sponsored by Nationwide, and the Scholarship Luncheon, sponsored by Target, where recipients of this year's NSHMBA Scholarship Program were recognized. NSHMBA's tribute to female leadership past and present, was introduced with the launch of the NSHMBA Women Leadership Network. Additionally, McDonald's was sponsor to the Education for Success Program that was designed to kick-start high school students' scholastic pursuits by giving them a floor-level perspective of the NSHMBA 2010 Conference & Career Expo.
Putting the official cap on this year's conference was the Brillante Awards for Excellence Ceremony, where the 2010 recipients were recognized for their dedication and steadfastness to the Hispanic community. This year's winners included:
Corporate Excellence - State Farm
Corporate Executive Excellence - Raymond Arroyo
Educational Excellence (academic) - University of Notre Dame-Mendoza College of Business
Entrepreneurial Excellence - Murray Mann
Member Services - America Baez
As with years past, the event included some of the best in hosts and entertainment. Emcee was John Quinones, Emmy award-winning co-anchor of ABC's "Primetime" and the Luna Negra Dance Theater and Tenor Diego Silva the featured entertainment. The evening concluded with the official announcement of the location of the 2011 Conference & Career Expo in Anaheim, California, October 13-16.
The National Society of Hispanic MBAs (NSHMBA) was created in 1988 as a non-profit organization. Widely known as the "Premier Hispanic Organization," NSHMBA serves 32 chapters and over 8,000* members in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. It exists to increase the number of Hispanics graduating from MBA schools through scholarships, awareness programs and mentorship; enhance career management opportunities for Hispanic MBAs from school to leadership positions, through job placement and world class professional development; to be the partner of choice for organizations seeking to hire and develop Hispanic talent; and recruit and retain as life-long members a majority of Hispanic MBAs. For more information visit www.nshmba.org
*Based upon 2009 membership data
SOURCE National Society of Hispanic MBAs