Article and photos by Brenda Peña, MPA
What makes a good leader? From bringing people together to building key relationships, leadership comes with a wide-range of qualities. However, in the Latino community, leadership is so much more than overcoming obstacles; it’s about one’s heart, passion and motivation.
This past November, the National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders (NALCAB) visited the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) downtown campus for their annual Colegio Community Economic Development Fellowship Training. NALCAB is a nonprofit organization who represents and serves geographically diverse nonprofit organizations that are providing community development to help build our nation’s Latino communities. The UTSA Policy Studies Center is proud to showcase these opportunities that help give voice to Latino leadership.
Leaders from around the U.S. are chosen to participate in the Fellowship in efforts of providing a platform for their organization and to learn the importance of their leadership within the Latino community. Each member has an opportunity to speak about their experiences within their organization, as well as obtain new knowledge of how they can continue to make a difference. NALCAB gives members the opportunity to learn from other Latino leaders in order to help enhance their expertise and gain professional insight.
“Leaders bring people together,” says Roger Enriquez, Associate Professor and Director at UTSA’s Policy Studies Center. “They have the ability to influence people to achieve their goals. We value these qualities here at UTSA and are proud to continue the drive for Latino leadership.”
UTSA public administration professor, Dr. Kandyce Fernandez, shared valuable insight with her presentation, “Panarchy Ecosystems for Change,” which challenged members to think vividly about their communities and the obstacles they face. This discussion unraveled a unique conversation about macro and micro issues that the Latino community experiences, highlighting the importance of Latino leadership, education and impactful strategic plans in order to help communities thrive. Dr. Fernandez’s presentation also helped highlight the definite need for advocacy work to help influence the enhancement of these changes so that Latino communities can prosper.
Thrive Advisory, LLC CEO, Lupita Gonzalez, presented “Leadership in Nonprofit Organizations.” This presentation opened the conversation about leadership adaptation, self-awareness, and in some cases, the lack of Latino leadership within communities.
Latino leadership is necessary for community development. Although obstacles are inevitable, overcoming them with culturally sensitive leadership is what makes a positive impact on the Latino community. It is important that as we continue to come together to value the education and advocacy necessary to help all future Latino leaders to succeed.
To learn more about NALCAB and the Colegio Fellowship Training, please visit their website at www.nalcab.org.
The UTSA Policy Studies Center helps provide insightful and educational opportunities to students and professionals. To learn more about upcoming events click here.
First picture: Thrive CEO, Lupita Gonzalez, discusses nonprofit leadership with NALCAB members.
Second picture: Dr. Kandyce Fernandez (center) poses with Director of Training and Development, Carol Rodriguez (right), and Program Coordinator, Natalia Chaves (left), of NALCAB
Third picture: NALCAB member, Rodolfo Rodriguez, presents his Latino community initiatives.