IRVING, Texas, Aug. 25, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today Prospanica announced the winners of the highly anticipated Brillante awards, the first awards given under the organization's new name. Founded in 1988 as the National Society of Hispanic MBAs, the organization nurtured Hispanic students in their efforts to obtain MBA degrees. Twenty-eight years later, many of those original students have risen to executive leadership positions in Fortune 500 corporations and corporate boards. Prospanica strives to empower all Hispanic business professionals to achieve their full educational, economic and social potential as it seeks to become the leading catalyst for Hispanic achievement.
This year's Brillante Awards reflect that change. The awards will be presented at the 2016 Prospanica Conference & Career Expo during the Brillante Gala, an event emceed by Liliana Gil Valleta. An award-winning entrepreneur, World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, and TV media contributor, Lili brings a multi-faceted perspective on leadership to the Brillante Gala. Past winners will be on hand to present the award to this year's recipients, and this ceremonial handoff will be celebrated in grand fashion by salsa legend Tito Rojas.
To further underscore that change, Prospanica will also award the Founder's Award for the first time in several years. This is the highest award the organization offers, given to individuals who distinguish themselves through lifetime achievements and contributions to the Hispanic community. In this way, a powerful example of lifelong leadership will be highlighted to a roomful of rising stars.
Founder's Award: Linda Alvarado
Ms. Alvarado is a trailblazer for others to follow as exemplified through her entrepreneurial endeavors in her own construction company, as a co-owner of the Colorado Rockies and through leadership roles on various corporate boards. An advocate for small businesses and advancement of Hispanics in Corporate America, Ms. Alvarado is not only raising the standard among Hispanic professionals but helping others to achieve success alongside her.
Brillante Award for Corporate Excellence: Comcast-NBCUniversal
Comcast NBCUniversal has proven to be an outstanding corporate partner to Prospanica for many years.
It continues to demonstrate a commitment to recruiting and advancing the careers of top Hispanic talent around the country.
Brillante Award for Educational Excellence: University of Central Florida
During the past 10 years, UCF Career Services has supported Prospanica by promoting the organization to UCF students and alumni. Its belief in Prospanica's vision has led to the establishment of the UCF student chapter.
Brillante Award for Entrepreneurial Excellence: Sonia Clayton
Sonia is known as "The Oracle of the Hispanic Business Woman in America," as quoted by US congressmen and senators, and she is also a Harvard Business School Strategic Negotiator. Her educational foundation provides scholarships so students can complete their education and reach their goals in life.
Brillante Award for Member Excellence: Janet Simms
Janet was one of the founding members of the New Jersey Prospanica Chapter and also held the position of Chapter President from 2012-2014. Her leadership and commitment are considered a template for establishing and maintaining a successful Prospanica chapter.
Brillante Award for Community Excellence: Dr. Laura Murillo
Dr. Murillo's focus on community and business stretches far beyond her current role as President and CEO of the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. She serves on numerous boards and is involved in many community organizations. She is truly a role model in the Hispanic community.
"The Brillante Awards are an excellent example of the dedication required by this caliber of leadership. When we celebrate those leaders who have made large scale impacts, we highlight the power and possibilities for the next generation," said Thomas Savino, CEO of Prospanica.
Founded in 1988 as NSHMBA (National Society of Hispanic MBAs) to advocate for Hispanic graduate level education, Prospanica, is the non-profit organization dedicated to empowering Hispanics to achieve their full educational, economic, and social potential. With more than 45 Professional and University chapters nationwide, including Puerto Rico, Prospanica helps professionals and partners build on connections and career development to fortify the Hispanic workforce. Prospanica's national conference and career expo is a 4-day event that brings together thousands of recruiters and hiring managers from Fortune 500 companies to build connections between Hispanic talent and recruiting opportunities. Attendees will also benefit from professional development, on-site career management services, and networking events. Prospanica's Corporate Advisory Board is a major supporter of this event and includes the companies: Abbott, Accenture, American Airlines, Bank of America, BASF, Cigna, Dell, Delta Air Lines, ExxonMobil, Ford Motor Company, GSK, Intel Corporation, Johnson & Johnson, Microsoft, Nationwide, Paychex, Pepsi Co, Pitney Bowes, United Health Group, United Technologies Corporation, Wells Fargo, The University of Texas at San Antonio College of Business, Daniels College of Business, University of Denver, Georgetown University, McDonough School of Business, Rutgers Business School, The University of Texas at Austin, McCombs School of Business, and The University of Texas at San Antonio College of Business. For more information visit www.prospanicaconference.org