WASHINGTON—The Mid-Atlantic Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (MAHCC) hosted the 2011 Poinsettia Festival Awards Dinner and Dance at Kellogg Conference Hotel at Gallaudet University on Nov. 19.
The theme of 2011 MAHCC annual event was "English Literacy: Pathway to the American Dream." Despite the difficult economic times, the Mid-Atlantic Hispanic Chamber of Commerce continues to flourish, commented Dr. Jorge Ribas, president of MAHCC.
The Chamber recruited 50 new members, mostly in the technology, professional, and financial services and also initiated new programs.
MAHCC awarded literacy champions from Maryland and Virginia.
Maryland Literacy Champion of The Year was awarded to Sandy Doggett. Virginia Literacy Champion of The Year was awarded to Mary Ann Nocerino. Doggett and Nocerino have been actively involved with providing English Literacy programs and counseling to Hispanic adult immigrants.
MAHCC awarded Victor R. Ramirez, the current State Senator for District 47 in Prince George's County of Maryland, as Legislator of the Year. He was born in San Salvador, El Salvador, and grew up in Maryland. Ramirez was admitted to the Maryland Bar in 2001 and has his own law office. He has worked pro bono for organizations like the House of Ruth, providing domestic violence victims with free legal support in court.
Ramirez was elected as State Delegate in 2003. He sponsored "The DREAM Act of Maryland," a bill which eventually passed that allows undocumented immigrant students residing in the state of Maryland to enroll in state colleges and pay in-state tuition rates.
MAHCC awarded the Central American Resource Center (CARECEN) as Latino Nonprofit of the Year. CARECEN fosters the community development of the Latino community in the Washington metropolitan region.
CARECEN was founded in 1981 to protect the rights of refugees arriving from conflict zones in Central America, and to help ease their transition by providing legal services. Over the last 30 years, thousands of Latino immigrants have benefited from their services in immigration, housing and citizenship as well as empowerment, civil rights advocacy, and civic training.
MAHCC awarded Lou Caceres as Maryland Banker of the Year. Mr. Caceres has been in the banking business since 1986. He joined the Sandy Spring Bank in 1999 and has served as Executive Vice President since 2002.
Mr. Caceres said that Sandy Spring Bank has become the biggest community bank headquartered in Maryland. He pointed out that Sandy Spring Bank is a heavy community focused bank; not only does the bank offer financial help to local businesses, it also contributes to many volunteer activities of local communities. Mr. Caceres was very proud that Sandy Spring was recently recognized by the Washington Business Journal as one of the top five philanthropic companies in the DC metropolitan area.
MAHCC honored the Prototype Productions, Inc., as Mid-Atlantic State's Entrepreneur of the Year. This business is the dream of two brothers, Joe Vladimir Travez, an architect, and Italo Danilo Travez, a mechanical engineer. They co-founded Prototype Productions in 1991. Their vision was to establish an all-encompassing creative environment, containing talented designers from varying fields, and to provide their studio with the most sophisticated design and management software, manufacturing equipment and machine tools.
Today, Prototype Productions Inc. has evolved into a mature project management, design, and product development and manufacturing firm, serving many clients in the Fortune 500 list. Their clients include Lucent Technologies, NASA, Lockheed Martin, ARC, Medtronic, Immersion Medical, NIST, Naval Research Lab, Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab, and Marriott International.
Mr. Italo Travez was present to accept the award. He offered advice for new entrepreneurs: "If you have a passion for something, just go forward to work hard for it, and you will be successful eventually."
URL to article: http://www.theepochtimes.com/n2/united-states/hispanic-business-organization-recognizes-hard-work-152147.html
Photo caption: Lou Caceres is awarded Maryland Banker of the Year by Mid-Atlantic Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (MAHCC) at Kellogg Conference Hotel at Gallaudet University on Nov. 19. (Grace Yao/The Epoch Times)
Copyright © 2011 Epoch Times. All rights reserved.