This is part of a sponsored collaboration with Prudential and Dime Media. However, all opinions expressed are my own.
Hispanicize is one of my favorite events of the year. Not only does it give me the chance to catch up with friends that come from all over the world to attend, but it always provides me with opportunities for personal and professional growth. This year was no exception. Having just gone on a big vacation with the family, I hadn’t quite figured out how to manage my work schedule this year and attend. Then, something happened to make it all come together: I was chosen as a Prudential Brand Ambassador! With Prudential being the title sponsor of the event, I knew this was a chance I couldn’t pass up, and made arrangements to attend two half days (Something is better than nothing!)
While my time at Hispanicize was shorter than I hoped (mostly because the unpredictability of traffic into downtown put a serious damper on any plans I made), I was able to enjoy both the Positive Impact Awards and the Tecla Awards. The Positive Impact Awards recognize Hispanic Americans who do outstanding work in their communities. The awards were created to honor Louis Pagan, co-founder of Hispanicize, who died unexpectedly in 2013. This year, Hispanicize honored California Assemblywoman Wendy Carrillo, journalist and Senior Digital Director for the Futuro Media Group Julio Ricardo Varela, and Kirk Michaelis, owner of El Bolillo Bakery in Houston, who won the 2018 Person of the Year. Want to know more about these outstanding people? Read about them here. The Positive Impact Awards also included a performance by five-time Latin Grammy Award Winner Fonseca. Hispanicize always brings it’s A-Game when it comes to musical performances!
The Tecla Awards recognize our community’s top influencer talent by honoring content creators in various niches and media formats. The awards are always fun, but this year was the best to date: it was hosted by Jenny Lorenzo, aka “Abuela”! And, The Chonga Girls were in the house too…I was totally fan-girling! I’m happy to report that several friends were nominated for awards, and quite a few of them won, including Melanie Mendez-Gonzales who won this year’s Best Social Good Creator – “The Jewel Award”, named after the amazing and greatly-missed Jewel Figueras. Both the Positive Impact Awards and Tecla Awards were truly enjoyable evenings!
But it wasn’t all awards shows and red carpets. Prudential had quite the presence throughout all of Hispanicize and at the Exhibit Hall, including Prudential representatives that took the time to speak with visitors about the best ways to get financially fit and plan for the future. I took advantage of this opportunity and spoke with representatives Roberto and Tony. As I mentioned a couple of months ago, we have some big financial goals this year. The first thing we are tackling are our credit cards. Roberto confirmed what I suspected: when faced with several financial hurdles at the same time, such as credit card debt, planning for retirement, establishing an emergency fund, and getting life insurance, get those credit cards out of the way first! That will open up some funds to be able to focus on the other items. We have been chipping away at our cards, similar to the Snowball method mentioned in this article.
As new homeowners again (I know that sounds redundant, but that’s what we are), we are cautious to not make the same mistakes we made last time that ultimately led to foreclosure. This article is a great resource for those looking to buy their first home. With time we have learned to stay on budget, minimize our spending when possible, and save for the future. There have been a few bumps in the road, but we are on our way to meeting our financial goals, and it feels really good to be able to say that.