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La Paz Chattanooga Announces Finalists for the 2023 Latino Leadership Awards

Finalists and honorees will be recognized at the Latino Leadership Awards ceremony at the Westin Chattanooga this September.


CHATTANOOGA, TENN. (August 1, 2023)La Paz Chattanooga, the longest-serving non-profit organization working directly with the Chattanooga area’s rapidly-growing Latino population, announced today finalists for the 2023 Latino Leadership Awards. Having added new award categories and updated the event format from a luncheon to an evening soirée with dinner and dancing, the team at La Paz is eager to elevate these Latino leaders making a noticeable impact in the Chattanooga area.


“We received some truly outstanding nominations this year — choosing finalists was no small feat, and it’s safe to say that our selection committee has their work cut out for them in choosing winners,” said La Paz Chattanooga executive director, Stacy Johnson. “We hope you’ll join us in celebrating these incredible professionals, organizations, and community members for all they do to make our city a more connected and inclusive Chattanooga.”


Award categories, as well as finalists in each category, are listed below:


Latino Leader of the Year

Paulo Hutson Solórzano, A Medida Communications

Liz Gibbons, Chattanooga School of Language

Iris Negrete-Regagnon, Hamilton County Schools International Welcome Center


Chattanooga’s Choice

Dylan Rivera, City of Chattanooga

Arnold Alexis Ruelas, Entrepreneur/Consultant

Viridiana Marin, Chattanooga Community Fridge/Tennessee Immigrant & Refugee Rights Coalition


Latino Community Champion Award (organization/business)

The Enterprise Center

Hamilton County Schools

Cempa Community Care

Brewer Media/Tu Radio

Hamilton County Health Department


Emerging Latino Leader Award

Daisy Hernandez Puac, Howard School

Mateo Jimenez, The Enterprise Center

Liliana Trejo Zavaleta, Red Bank High School


La Paz Volunteer of the Year Award

Velvet Hernandez-Johnson for leadership in Tech Goes Home Spanish classes

Raiza Barahona & Amira Marquez Moreno for helping launch the La Paz food pantry

Ashton Jolley for crucial support in building efforts for Latino student success


Latino Business of the Year

The Local Juicery + Kitchen, Luis Contreras and Gisela Bellina

Supermercado El Sol, Carlos Perez

LogistiX, Carlos Garcia


Latino New Business of the Year

MR Construction LLC, Ivan and Marta Manrique

CulturAlly, Angela Garcia

Ayelet’s Style Indigenous Mexican Art, Claudia Berck





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