Press Release - La Paz Chattanooga Announces Honorees for the 6th Annual Latino Leadership Awards


CHATTANOOGA, TN - July 24, 2017         

La Paz Chattanooga, a local nonprofit organization that works to engage and empower Chattanooga's Latino community, has announced the honorees for the 2017 Latino Leadership Awards ceremony, set to take place on Monday, September 18th, at the Chattanooga Convention Center. 

The Latino Leadership Awards is an annual La Paz Chattanooga initiative that brings together members of the community in order to recognize and honor Latinos and Hispanics for their career achievements and community involvement in Chattanooga.

Nominations from the community have been pouring into La Paz's office since late spring. The awards selection committee, comprising of past Latino Leader honorees and La Paz leaders, spent many hours considering the nominations and have ultimately selected those who will be honored at this year's ceremony. 

"These individuals have been nominated because of both the accomplishments they have made in their professional pursuits and the impact they have had on the lives of others around them," says Stacy Johnson, La Paz Chattanooga's executive director. "We are honored to recognize their achievements and give our community the opportunity to publicly celebrate some of our city's amazing leaders." 

The honorees for the 2017 Latino Leadership Awards include:

  • Chuy Esquivel, owner of Mexiville
  • Martha Flores, Branch Banker at BB&T
  • Carlos Garcia, local entrepreneur and President/CEO of LicorUSA, LLC
  • Neysa Gorgas-Ríos, Officer with the Chattanooga Police Department
  • Daniel Ledo, Director of Advertising at Lynch Sales Company and Board Chair of Chattanooga Cares
  • Pablo Mazariegos, Director of the Family Resource Center at the Hamilton County Department of Education 
  • Dr. Enrique Ordoñez, Obstetrics & Gynecology Physician at Erlanger Health System
  • Sheila Ortiz, Legal Administrative Assistant at Grant, Konvalinka and Harrison, P.C.
  • Daniela Peterson, Community Engagement Specialist at Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise
  • Kristina Sanchez-Mills, Local Artist and Owner of Artistic Kreations

In addition to recognizing the Latino Leaders listed above, La Paz will also honor five individuals with the following special awards: 

Latino Leader of the Year & Chattanooga’s Choice 

Of the selected 2017 Latino Leaders above, two will be given an additional recognition as either Latino of the Year or Chattanooga's Choice for their individual career achievement and community impact over a significant period of time. A selection committee will determine who will receive the Latino Leader of the Year Award, and the general public will vote for the leader to be honored as Chattanooga's Choice.

The Chattanooga's Choice voting process will begin August 1st. To vote, please visit

Community Champion 

This award recognizes an individual who has championed services for and/or made a significant impact on Chattanooga’s Latino population over a series of years. The recipient of this award may or may not be of Latino heritage.  

Emerging Latino Leader 

Recognizing the emerging influence and accomplishments of a Latino young adult who is 25 years of age or younger. 

Anne Shelton Memorial Volunteer of the Year 

The individual selected for this award will be recognized for their outstanding dedication and volunteer service to support the work of La Paz Chattanooga. 

The awards ceremony will take place on September 18, 2017 from 11:00 a.m - 1:00 p.m. at the Chattanooga Convention Center.

Tickets and table purchases, as well as table sponsorships, are available on the event website at

For More Information

For more information regarding the Latino Leadership Awards, please contact us at or call the La Paz office at 423-624-8414.