Arturo Cázares

Episode 63: From Michoacán to the C-Suite, and the Leadership Lessons in Between

Meet Arturo Cázares, a Latino CEO who overcame adversity growing up in the U.S. and who is now leading Latinos in creating the change we need for a more prosperous society.

Arturo Cázares is a successful Latino executive who has worked in some of the most prestigious companies in the world and is now the CEO of the Latino Business Action Network (LBAN). Arturo shares his story of migrating from Michoacán, his home state in Mexico and growing up in California, picking crops with his family, and living in a dangerous and poor neighborhood. He talks about how his parents and the people around him embraced their Mexican identity, even when it was not always welcomed in the spaces he and his siblings were entering for the first time.

Arturo also talks about how important education was for him and his family, how it was the main reason why his parents left their home country, and how they saw education as the only avenue to bigger and better opportunities. Arturo reveals how studying at Stanford changed his life, thanks not only to the educational opportunities but also to the Latino-focused spaces that Stanford had created, which helped him be himself and feel welcomed. He also talks about what he thinks Stanford still needs to do to increase the representation of Latinos on campus.

We discussed the current state of American society, and why he believes it is our responsibility to make it more equitable and just for all. He also gives advice to Latinos who aspire to make it to the C-suite, and how they can balance playing the game of corporate America with staying true to their identity and values.

Arturo also shares his insights on how Latinx can use their social capital to create change for their community, and why he thinks the environment has to change to make it more welcoming to Latinx. He explains why Latinx should not feel deficient, but rather confident and proud of their contributions and potential.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/arturocazares/ 

Dra. Patty Delgado

Episode 59: How Latinx Culture Can Boost Your Leadership Skills, with the Doctoras of El Puente Institute

Meet Dr. Patty Delgado, an experienced Industrial-Organizational (I/O) Psychologist with 20 years of experience and the CEO and Founder of The Bridgify Group, a boutique research firm. With expertise in the science of human behavior in the workplace, Dr. Delgado’s scope of work focuses on bridging theory and research with people management and workplace practice. Dr. Delgado understands the value of a diverse workforce, where leaders and employees create a cohesive work environment that represents and celebrates each person’s differences. Dr. Delgado is a contributing author, a board member of various organizations, featured in multiple podcasts, an Hispanic/Latino workforce expert, and a leader in the Hispanic community.

In this episode, Dr. Delgado, along with her co-founders and amazing Latina leaders shared their inspiring personal stories, how they met, and how they decided to start collaborating to create El Puente Institute, which conducts research and education centered around the influence of Latinx/Hispanic cultural drivers from psychological and behavioral perspectives.

They also offered valuable insights and tips on how to navigate the challenges and opportunities that Latinx professionals face in the corporate world, as well as how our cultural identity and values can also help us become better leaders.

You don’t want to miss this enlightening and empowering conversation with these three remarkable women who are making a difference in the Latinx community and beyond.

Company website: www.thebridgifygroup.com

LinkedIn: El Puente Institute

Facebook: www.facebook.com/thebridgifygroup

Instagram: www.instagram.com/elpuenteinstitute/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/patricia-delgadothebridgifygroup/ 

Michelle Manzanales

Episode 54: Dancers, Can They be Financially Stable?

Meet Michelle Manzanales, a dancer and choreographer who studied finance but chose to develop a career in Dance despite the financial insecurity associated with artistic careers.

Michelle was born and raised in Houston, TX to a Mexican-american family. She started dancing at age 3, and has not stopped since. Michelle graduate with a degree in finance from the University of Houston, and tried to have a stable career in the field, but she was always a dancer at heart. 

After a couple of years in the financial sector, Michelle decided that she was going to pursue a career as a dancer, and although she didn’t become a multimillionaire, she was always financially independent. 

Michelle talks about her experience growing up, not feeling proud of her Mexican heritage. It was not until later in life, that she began exploring what being “Ni de aquí, ni de allá” means. Dance has helped Michelle explore that in-between world, and now considers it an asset. 

She is now, the director of Ballet Hispánico’s School of Dance. As a teacher and choreographer, Michelle’s goal is for students to feel safe to show up as their authentic selves, and helps them explore their roots and/or learn more about the Latin culture. 

Michelle also discussed the many transferable skills dancers learn throughout their careers, such as problem-solving, courage, and dealing with rejection. She also has a message for parents of dancers who may be worried about their children’s future: 

“Fear more that your child isn't learning those base skills more than fearing them studying the arts” 

Learn more about Ballet Hispánico here: https://www.ballethispanico.org/ 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mmanzanales/ 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michellemanzanales/ 

Dr. Mike Vasquez

Episode 53: Are Careers in Additive Manufacturing/3D Printing Only for Engineers? with Dr. Mike Vasquez

Meet Dr. Mike Vasquez, a former student-athlete at MIT, whose passion for sports led him to develop a career helping companies adopt the revolutionary Additive Manufacturing (AM) technology. 

Dr. Vasquez grew up in Minnesota in a Mexican-American family. He loved playing baseball and dreamed of becoming a professional baseball player, but when he realized his fastball fell a little short of MLB standards, he focused his attention on his passion for STEM. 

One summer, he participated in the MIT Introduction to Technology, Engineering, and Science (MITES) program, which was his first experience with the university, but not the last, as he continued on to earn his Bachelor's and Master’s degrees from MIT, followed by a Ph.D. at Loughborough University, in the UK. 

Dr. Vasquez‘s passion for sports continued while he was pursuing his education. He was the captain of the baseball team at MIT, an activity that gave him balance and sense of community, and he also conducted research related to sports.

It was his passion for sports, materials science, and engineering what exposed him to AM early on in his career, and eventually led him to found his own consulting business to help companies ease the pain points associated with implementing the technology. One of those pain points is finding AM professionals, which are few, partly due to the novelty of the technology but primarily due to the lack of knowledge and information available for the general population. 

Dr. Vasquez noticed this gap and launched AMx - The Advance Manufacturing Experience, a program designed to create awareness of the types of careers available in AM, and to help individuals develop valuable skills that are sorely needed in the industry. One thing is clear, the AM field is not just for scientists and engineers, and there is a vast need for people who love to pull up their sleeves and get their hands dirty. 

AMx was implemented in partnership with local Chicago businesses, and it was initially focused on collaborating with communities in the West side of Chicago. Dr. Vasquez's next goal is to make this program available nationwide.

Check out the AMx experience Here: https://www.3degreescompany.com/amx 

Find out more about the MITES program here:https://mites.mit.edu/ 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mvasquez18/ 

Yanira Guzmán

Episode 46: La gema de tu carrera (The Career Gem)

Conce a Yanira Guzmán, una líder de la comunidad latina en California que está trabajando durísimo para ayudar a nuestra comunidad a crecer y desarrollarse profesionalmente.

Yanira trabaja como especialista de desarrollo de líderes, en su propia empresa llamada "The Career Gem", o traducido como la Gema de tu carrera. En su empresa, Yanira se dedica a entrenar candidatos para mejorar sus carreras profesionales.

Además, Yanira es miembro de la junta concejal de la organización sin fines de lucros, Techueria. Una organización, a nivel global, que brinda servicio a la comunidad más grande de profesionales LatinX en campo de la tecnología, con más de 12,000 miembros. 

Como si eso fuera poco, en el 2020, en medio de la pandemia Yanira corrió una campana política, la cual gano, para el puesto de miembro de la junta Fideicomisaria del distrito escolar unificado del valle de Livermore.

Si quieres conocer más sobre Yanira, recibir consejos de como superarte profesionalmente y sus servicios la puedes encontrar en las redes sociales como: 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/yg_thecareergem/?hl=en 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ygthecareergem/ 

Webpage: https://www.thecareergem.com/ 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/yanira-guzman-thecareergem/  

Dr. Victoria Mora

Episode 45: UWC Day ‘22: Peace Begins with Us

Meet Dr. Victoria Mora, president of the United World College-USA, one of the 18 schools in a global movement that makes education a force for peace and a sustainable future. 

Dr. Mora is a New Mexican whose passion for education was sparked by her mother and the bargain they stroke for 4-year-old Victoria to look at books while her siblings and her mom took their daily nap. Her family helped her nourish that desire to learn, and supported her so that she could become the first Latina to graduate with a PhD from Yale University. 

We talked about Victoria’s journey through higher education, and discussed how the narrative of the “first-generation” can be both inspiring and limiting, and she encourages us to pick and choose which stories we make our own. We also talked about how, regardless of their educational attainments, everyone deserves to be treated with respect. 

In celebration of UWC Day 2022, we discussed the theme: “Peace begins with us”, what it means to her, and how UWC aims to instill such values in the students that participate in the movement. 

We also talked about how a UWC education differs from the public high school education in the US, what the selection process is looking for in students, and the type of financial aid that is available to students all over the world! 

Applications for UWC are open now:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/victoriajmora/ 

Dr. Alejandra Rodriguez Mielke

Episode 44: Your Multiculturalism is Your Superpower

Meet Dr. Alejandra Rodriguez Mielke, a bilingual DEI coach and consultant helping individuals and organizations transcend personal biases and systemic barriers, to help build inclusive & equitable workplaces.

Dr. Mielke is a native of Mexico, where she grew up and studied English language and literature to become a bilingual teacher. She then moved to Austin, TX to pursue a Ph.D. in Language and Literacy Studies from UT Texas, with the hope of learning how to develop fully bilingual curricula. 

Dr. Mielke worked with multiple students and teachers while pursuing her Ph.D., and her experience in the classroom led her to realize that minority students, especially Latinx students, were seen from a deficit-thinking point of view, and their multicultural and multilingual superpowers were seldom recognized as such. 

Dr. Mielke recognized that for Latinx students to succeed in school they needed to be connected to their roots and their heritage, and they needed to see themselves represented in the materials studied. After several years in the field, Alejandra became a learning and development expert. She is now a career coach and works closely with Latinas who are looking to get to the next level. 

During this episode we talked about our multicultural superpowers, the need for connection, representation, and the concept of the “White Female Supervisor” and what to do when those supervisors are not supportive, as managers should be. 

Find out more about Latina Power Coaching here:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/alejandramielke/ 

Laurie Navarro

Episode 43: Latinx Travel Hackers

Meet Laurie Navarro, a Latinx professional that, along with her husband Danny, travel hacking their way around the world, and reclaiming the first in first-class flights, lounges, and top-tier hotels.

Laurie & Danny were born in the US and have Mexican and Colombian heritages. They grew up watching their families work hard to provide a better future, and had to put in their own sweat to achieve not just a bachelor’s degree, but a master degree too. 

By day, they accumulate vacation days while working in their professional fields in Washington DC, and when it is time to cash in those days, they make sure to do it in style. 

Laurie and Danny “Van viajando” around the world because “the world needs to see us”. Through their IG account @latinoswithpassports, they show us how they have travel-hacked their way to exotic places like Dubai and Singapore, while flying first-class!

Laurie and Danny are responsible though! They encourage us to enjoy life while being fiscally responsible and without getting into debt, just working smart by budgeting and making our $$$ work for us.

We also talked about how they have supported each other to pay their debt, and about how they manage their money based on what makes sense for them as a couple, and not based on limiting cultural beliefs that put the burden on men. 

Find out more about Latinos with Passports here:

Taylor Tieman

Episode 34: From Student-Athlete to Lawyer, to Small Business Owner

Meet Taylor Tieman, an attorney and small business owner whose journey to become a lawyer helped her understand the decisions her family had to make to keep them safe. 

Taylor grew up in California playing Softball with the goal of pursuing her bachelor’s degree at an Ivy League school. She achieved her goal by graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, followed by a Juris Doctor degree from Southwestern University School of Law. 

We talked about what it actually means to be a student-athlete and the level of commitment it requires. We also discussed how Taylor’s journey to becoming a lawyer helped her understand why she didn’t grow up speaking Spanish, and the kind of privilege she benefited from as a white-presenting Latina. Taylor also shared her legal advice for small business owners based not only on her experience as a lawyer, but a small business owner herself.

Some of the opportunities mentioned in this episode:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/taylor-tieman-84763325/ 

Marissa Garcia

Episode 33: A Pathway to Become a NASA Engineer

Meet Marissa Garcia, a NASA engineer from El Paso, TX, who shares with us her story, and the tips & tricks that helped her land a job a NASA. 

Marissa is a native of El Paso, TX, and pursued both her Bachelor’s and Master's degrees in Engineering at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). She tells us what it was like to study at a Hispanic Serving Institution, her experience as a young engineer, and the top 3 pieces of advice that helped her land a job at NASA. 

Some of the opportunities mentioned in this episode:

The Center for Space Exploration and Technology Research (cSETR) at UTEP:


NASA Internships Opportunities:



LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/marissa-garcia-7759a2166/ 

Eli Velasquez

Episode 28: Tips to Become an Investor and Support Entrepreneurs of Color 

Meet Eli Velasquez, co-founder of the Investors of Color Network, an ecosystem of black and Latinx accredited investors working to close the racial funding gap in startup capital. Eli is a native of El Paso, TX, who shares the positive aspects of living in a border community, which are rarely mentioned in the media. Eli left El Paso to pursue higher education, initially becoming a mechanical engineer who transformed into a patent attorney after pursuing a Juris Doctor degree while working full time. After living in Boston and California for a number of years, he returned to El Paso to contribute to this vibrant community, but encountered obstacles that led him to become an entrepreneur. Since then, Eli has been involved in the startup ecosystem from the investment side. He shares his experience navigating a field dominated by white men, and encourages the Latinx community to step into an abundance mindset that can enable us to support each other, and share opportunities and resources with our Latinx network. Eli also offered tips we can implement to eventually become investors who can support entrepreneurs from our own Latinx community.

Some of the opportunities mentioned in this episode:

Investors of Color Network: https://www.investorsofcolor.com 

Connect with Eli Velasquez: https://www.linkedin.com/in/eli-velasquez  

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/eli-velasquez/ 

Dr. Teresa Ramírez

Episode 22: Building Resilience and Community Wherever You Go

Meet Dr. Teresa Ramirez, a Mexican-American scientist who is committed to giving back to her community. Dr. Ramirez grew up in Compton, CA, and tells us that despite the negative portrayal of this city in different media, she grew up surrounded by a supportive community that would take care of each other.  She tells us about her passion for helping people, and how her dream to become a medical doctor was always founded in her love for science, and how she eventually made the decision to become a scientist.  Dr. Ramirez also tells us about how SACNAS, a student organization that supports Hispanics/Chicanos and Native Americans in the sciences, not only helped her find life-changing opportunities but also provided a space where she could see herself represented in other scientists.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dr-teresa-r-a02a5770/ 

Cynthia Orduña

Episode 18: Knowing Your Own Value 

Meet Cynthia Orduña, a diversity, equity, and inclusion consultant (DEI), and career coach, who is passionate about helping people develop personally and professionally. Cynthia began looking into systems of inequalities when she started her career in the HR space, and realized the importance of her role, when she could not find other Latinx people like her in similar positions. She then transferred into the Tech space and was enthusiastic about helping companies become more diverse from within, but encountered resistance, so she began working as a DEI consultant to redesign those systems with companies that actually want to put in the work. Cynthia talks money...literally! She is a fierce advocate for salary transparency and shares practical advice, including:

How to respond to the question “What is your expected salary?”

When to talk about money during the interview process.

How to prepare for that negotiation.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/cynthia-orduna/

Dr. Laura Minero

Episode 9 & 10: Overcoming Obstacles Posed by Intersecting Systems of Inequality

Dr. Laura Minero is a psychologist who, with grit and determination, has surpassed the vast obstacles posed by her undocumented status, and she is her to tell you... Si Se Puede my Friends, Si Se Puede! In this two-part episode we will learn about the tortuous path Dr. Laura had to endure to pursue her education, as well as the challenges she faced growing up in the Latinx community while identifying and recognizing her sexual and gender identity. Dr. Laura helped us debunk some myths about the undocumented community in the United States, and highlights the importance of diversity and inclusion in the scientific fields. In this second part, Dr. Laura and I talk about how the Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals program, better known as DACA, untied her hands so she could swim in the ocean of opportunities she was being offered because of her talents and skills, but which she could not take advantage of due to her immigration status.  We discussed the threat the current administration poses to the DACA program, how the recent supreme court decision opened the door for the program to be re-challenged, and how those of you who have the privilege and the duty to vote in the upcoming election, have the power to significantly impact the lives of millions of people in the LatinX community, and the immigrant community at large. 

Link to Part#2: https://www.buzzsprout.com/765251/14243747 

Some of the opportunities mentioned during these episodes:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/laurapminero/