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AWARDS BANQUET SUPPORTS HISPANIC YOUTH OPPORTUNITIES

Princeton, NJ – Corporate and other leaders who help advance Hispanic youth education and careers will be honored at the annual Hispanics Inspiring Students’ Performance and Achievement (HISPA) Three Kings Banquet on January 10. To take place at Pines Manor in Edison, NJ, it will gather some 300 public and private sector leaders, educators and elected officials.

A nonprofit organization active in New Jersey, New York, Texas and Florida, HISPA has mobilized some 2,500 role models to inspire some 11,000 students to date.  Their message: they, too, can fulfill their potential and achieve their dreams through education.

The Three Kings Banquet coincides with the January 6 feast of the Epiphany, known as Three Kings Day, the gift-giving period in Spanish-speaking countries. HISPA recently marked its 1,000th classroom visit where Hispanic role models shared their stories of perseverance to inspire middle school students to excel. HISPA selected this theme to thank persons who share their gifts in support of educational opportunity for Hispanics.

HISPA honors those who excel in their commitment to, participation in and financial support of the programs. The “Transform” Award for Sponsor of the Year will go to the Verizon Foundation, its “Inspire” Award for Champion of the Year to Claudia Vazquez of Prudential and its “Share” Award for Role Model of the Year to Joe Vicente of UPS. The Latino Networks Coalition will receive the Leadership in Mentoring Award, while St. Mary’s University will receive the “Corazón” Award given to organizations that support HISPA via in-kind support.

Gold Sponsor Prudential, Silver Sponsors AT&T and PSEG, and Bronze Sponsors Bristol-Myers Squibb, PNC Bank and UPS will support the event. HISPA also extends a special thank you to Investors Bank, Verizon, Wells Fargo, Merck, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Comcast and Manolo’s Chili.

“This event celebrates the Latino professionals across sectors who have joined forces to step into classrooms and validate students’ visions for their futures,” said HISPA President and CEO Dr. Ivonne Díaz-Claisse.

“This year is very special, as we surpassed 1,000 classroom visits,” she added, “That means thousands of role models and supporting entities believe in the power of our voices. They have accepted our invitation to unite and bring role models to our youth.”

HISPA’s educational programs are made possible by Co-founding Partner the Verizon Foundation. Annual Partners are Educational Testing Service, the PSEG Foundation, Visa, and Southwest Airlines, HISPA’s official airline partner. Annual Supporters are Merck and Wells Fargo.