This year we are celebrating our 20th Anniversary of the LATINA Style 50 Report. A lot has changed in the past 20 years. Bill Clinton was President, Congress wanted to impeach him, population in the United States stood at 270,298,524, it was the Chinese Year of the Tiger, the Dow Jones industrial average ended the year at 7,539.07, unemployment was at 4.9 percent, median household income was $38,568.00, a gallon of gas cost $1.06. Google was formally incorporated and Google.com was registered as a domain name. “Too Close” by Next topped the music charts, “No Sé Olvidar” by Alejandro Fernández topped the Latin charts for a record eight weeks. Saving Private Ryan was the top movie money maker at $216,199,000. Denver defeated Atlanta in Super Bowl XXXIII, the Yankees crushed San Diego in the World Series and the Chicago Bulls with Michael Jordan ran over Utah. Remember any of it?
THE 2017 LATINA STYLE 50 ANNUAL REPORT
TWENTY YEARS IN THE MAKING.
So much has changed since then, diversity and inclusion was just a nice discussion topic. Today’s population exceeds 323.1 million and demographic and market changes have brought the diversity and inclusion issue to the very front. The hiring, training and retaining of minorities, especially Latinas, has become a business imperative for corporations wanting to address this new reality.
Over the years, the survey has also evolved to ensure more opportunities for Latinas are taken into consideration. This survey is one of a kind. With the mission to recognize the work corporate America is doing to advance and empower Latinas, the survey not only reflects on opportunities given to Latinas but it is also a reflection on the culture of the company and their overall focus on diversity and inclusion.
Over the years, the LATINA Style 50 Report has highlighted thousands of companies from a variety of industries. We are proud to recognize companies that support programs encouraging training, mentorship, and promotion for Latinas. The LATINA Style 50 report is a navigator for Latinas as they seek advancement and career opportunities. Following is a listing of the companies we believe have generated the best opportunities for Latinas in the United States for 2017.
We are honored to recognize Prudential Financial, Inc. as our Company of the Year for 2017. They have participated in the survey since its launch and have developed a wonderful track record of empowering Latinas by providing them with great career opportunities. Congratulations Prudential Financial, Inc.!
Senior Vice President and Head of Investments & Pension Solutions
Yanela Frias leads the $230 billion Investment & Pension Solutions business, where she is responsible for the Pension Risk Transfer, Longevity Reinsurance, Structured Settlements and Stable Value businesses within Prudential Retirement, and related institutional product innovation efforts domestically and internationally. Prior to this role, she was responsible for all aspects of Prudential Structured Settlements’ strategy and operations. She was also in charge of advancing Prudential’s position as a top-tier provider of Structured Settlements solutions, strengthening relationships with key intermediaries, optimizing Prudential’s new business product offering, and ensuring that clients and business partners received world-class customer service. In her 20 years with Prudential, Frias has had significant leadership roles serving as Chief Financial Officer for Prudential’s Individual Annuities business and Chief Financial Officer for Prudential’s Individual Life Insurance business, where she led the finance function and played a significant role in the acquisition of The Hartford’s Individual Life Insurance business. Frias has also served as a Managing Director within the Treasurer’s organization, and an Assistant Treasurer for Prudential Financial, Inc. where she had full responsibility for the borrowing, liquidity, capital markets execution and capital planning functions for the enterprise. Frias received a B.S. in accounting and an M.B.A. in finance from Rutgers University. She is a Certified Public Accountant and a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Frias resides in Westwood, NJ with her husband and two daughters.
2.Johnson & JOhnson
Maria Eduarda Kertesz
President of U.S. Baby, Oral and Wound Care
Maria Eduarda Kertész is President of U.S. Baby, Oral and Wound Care, where she manages some of Johnson & Johnson’s most iconic brands, totaling $1.5+B. She is an expert in leading organizational change and shaping business strategy. Previously, Kertész led the J&J Consumer Business in Brazil for five years, totaling 700+ people. Kertész’s leadership and transformation efforts helped the Brazilian business grow by 80 percent since 2010, due to strong increase in household penetration, aggressive investments on national media and digital channels and store execution. She has been named among the top 10 women leaders in Brazil, and by the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association as a 2017 Luminary, for serving as a role model in J&J. Kertész is an active mentor and sponsor to others, helping advance other women’s careers. She is a global co-leader for the Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI) for J&J US Consumer, and was the founder for the Latin American chapter. She has demonstrated her commitment to diversity and inclusion and is on J&J’s Diversity and Inclusion North American Advisory Board. Additionally, she has served as a Board member of the American Chamber of Commerce and was a founding member of the “Mulheres do Brasil” group in her country. Born in Brazil, Kertész earned a B.S. degree in Business Administration from FGV in São Paulo and a Certificate of Special Studies in Administration and Management from Harvard Extension School.
3.Marriot International, Inc.
Senior Vice President and Regional
Brenda Durham is Senior Vice President and Regional General Counsel for Marriott International, Inc. Durham began her career with Marriott International in 1999. In her 19th year with the company she now serves as primary legal counsel for Marriott’s hotels and resorts located throughout the Caribbean and Latin America. In these role she provides oversight guidance to Marriott’s law department group supporting the region. As part of the leadership team for this region, Durham supports and shapes the strategic objectives for the region and the process for evaluating and addressing owner and franchisee feedback, insight and direction. In her previous role, Durham served as the primary legal counsel and oversight to attorney supporting the Asia Pacific, Middle East, Africa and the United Kingdom. Throughout her career, Durham has demonstrated a comprehensive practice that includes negotiating financial, equity, and management agreement transactions. She has played a key role in hotel owner relationship development and dispute resolutions. Durham has also provided guidance and oversight for Marriot’s international global safety and security matters. She has demonstrated her commitment to diversity and inclusion as Human Rights Committee member for Marriott and an Ambassador Counsel member for N Street Village. N Street’s mission is to empower homeless and low-income women in Washington, D.C. to claim their highest quality of life
4. Comcast NBCUversal
SVP, Global Chief Information
Myrna Soto is Senior Vice President Global Chief Information Security Officer (GCISO) of Comcast Corporation. After earning more than 20 years of focused Information Technology and Security experience and accolades from a variety of industries, including: financial services, hospitality, Insurance/Risk Management and gaming/entertainment, Soto joined Comcast in 2009. In her eight years at Comcast she has earned the highest-ranking Latina. In her role, she is responsible for aligning security initiatives with enterprise programs and business objectives to ensure information assets and technologies are protected across the entire organization. She works closely with all of the technology and security teams across the organization to develop cyber security, network/infrastructure security, data security strategies, and operational efficacy in security programs, policies, and technology risk management. Soto is also the Executive Champion of Comcast’s Hispanic employee resource group, Unidos. Prior to Comcast, Soto served as Chief Information Security Officer and Vice President of Information Technology Governance for MGM Resorts International (formerly known as MGM MIRAGE). She has previously held senior leadership positions with American Express, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Lines and Kemper Insurance. In 2015 she was recognized by SC Magazine as the Top 10 Power Players for Women in Security. She is also an Executive Management Committee Board Member (Vice President) of HITEC (Hispanic IT Executive Council) and is a Member of the Board of Directors for CMS Energy & Consumers Energy
5. Walt-Mart Stores, Inc
Executive Vice President of Operations, Sam’s Club
Gisel Ruiz serves as the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Sam’s Club, a membership warehouse and a division of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. In this role, she oversees the operations of more than 650 Sam’s Club locations across the country, in addition to the Real Estate and Operations Transformation teams. Ruiz began her career at Walmart 25 years ago as a management trainee and has gained significant experience across operations and human resources. In her most recent role, Ruiz was Executive Vice President of the International People Division, supporting more than one million associates in 26 countries outside the United States. She has also served as the Walmart U.S. Chief Operating Officer where she was responsible for more than 4,000 stores at the time. She has led periods of high growth and expansion of supercenters and neighborhood markets, and has been recognized for her advocacy for diversity and inclusion. In 2010, LATINA Style honored Ruiz with the LATINA Style Corporate Executive of the Year Award. In 2012, 2013 and 2014, she was named one of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business by FORTUNE magazine. In 2013, she was awarded the Hispanic Federation’s “Premio Orgullo” award, and she was also the recipient of the “Woman of the Year” Distinguished Service Award from the USO of Metropolitan New York. She has a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Santa Clara University, where she also completed the Retail Management Institute program.
Senior Vice President – Premium CAre and customer Loyalty
Throughout her career with AT&T, Carmen Nava has been a customer advocate, focused on improving the customer experience. She leads a national customer care operation serving AT&T Entertainment Group, AT&T Services, Inc., consumer mobility, DIRECTV, and U-verse customers. Nava began her career as a summer intern with Pacific Bell in California, while attending the University of Southern California (USC). She has served AT&T and its customers for over 30 years in a variety of executive roles. These include consumer operations, human resources, external affairs, customer experience and marketing. Nava supports the company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion and is a member of the advisory board for HACEMOS, the Hispanic/Latino employee association of AT&T, and LEAGUE, the company’s LGBT and allies group. She serves on the Corporate Advisory Board of USC’s Latino Alumni Association. In 2015 and 2016 Nava was named one of the “Top 100 Most Influential and Notable Hispanics” in tech by the Hispanic Professionals in the Information Technology Industry. In 2015 and 2016, LATINA Style Magazine also recognized Nava as one of the nation’s “Top 5 Latina Executives” of the year. She was honored for her work to empower women and the Hispanic community. Nava obtained her bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business in 1984. She and her husband, Robert, reside in Dallas, Texas. They have one daughter, Natalie.
Senior Global Inclusion
& Diversity Managing Director
One of FORTUNE and the Association of Latino Professionals for America’s ’50 Most Powerful Latinas of 2017,’ Nellie Borrero has worked for three decades as a passionate advocate for inclusion and diversity – at Accenture, for its clients, in its communities and beyond. Borrero joined Accenture in 1986 as the first Latina at the company and shortly thereafter created the first role focused on diversity. Today, working with the company’s most senior leaders, she sets the vision and strategy for Accenture’s inclusion and diversity initiatives and is focused on accelerating its global agendas for women, LGBTQ, persons with disabilities and ethnic diversity. Under her direction, the company has launched several training programs around the world in multiple segments of diversity. Borrero has lent her voice to publications such as Forbes, The Chicago Tribune and National Public Radio (NPR) and is a sought after speaker for her inspirational impact, seeking to raise awareness for the advancement of women and ethnic minorities in the workplace. She serves on the board of Comprehensive Development, Inc. and has received coaching certification from the Hudson Institute and the International Coaching Federation. Outside of work, Borrero enjoys her personal time reading, playing tennis, spending quality time with family and purposefully giving to the world.
Sigal Cordeiro is the Global Product Marketing Executive Director for General Motors’ emerging market vehicles. In this role, she works to ensure that future cars and SUVs for countries like Brazil and China exceed customer expectations, deliver on the brand promise, and align with the company’s business priorities. Sigal joined General Motors in 2000 as part of its Marketing Leadership Program and since then has held numerous positions in Marketing, Product Research, and Brand Research in the U.S. and Germany. Her most recent experience was as General Director for Chevrolet Global Marketing, where she led the globalization efforts of the Chevrolet brand around the world. As the highest-ranking Latina at General Motors, Sigal is an active member of the Leadership Advisory Board for the GM Latino Network, providing strategic guidance and support to the employee group. Sigal’s past experiences include working at TAM Brazilian Airlines in various marketing capacities, and at NBCUniversal as Director of Consumer Insights. Sigal holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Fundacao Getulio Vargas in Brazil, and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. She has also completed the Chief Marketing Officer Program from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
Raquel Rivera works for Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies Corporation company, which is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines and auxiliary power units. Rivera rejoined Pratt & Whitney in 2016 as Vice President, Product Delivery Centers.
Rivera has global responsibility for final assembly and test of commercial, military and industrial gas turbine engines, auxiliary power units, propulsion systems and customer flight lines. She ensures parts and module material flow for all product lines is coordinated across all engine assembly sites and is planned according to the master schedule delivery plan.
Rivera joined Pratt & Whitney in 1992 and spent over 20 years in Operations, Commercial Engine Programs, Aftermarket Services and UTC Fire & Security. Previously, she also worked at Aetna as Vice President of Continuous Improvement where she launched the company’s Lean Operating System. Rivera was elected to the YWCA Academy of Women Achievers and was recognized by the Hartford Business Journal as top 40 under 40 for excelling professionally and her strong community involvement. She has served as the executive champion for the Pratt & Whitney’s Hispanic Leadership Forum and led various United Way Community Campaigns.
Rivera holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts and a Master’s degree in Manufacturing Engineering from Boston University.
Mayra Diaz is Vice President and Managing Director in the Retail Annuities organization of New York Life. In her current role, she leads Client Service Operations for Third Party Distribution (TPD) customers in Retail Annuities. She is responsible for the development and maintenance of the infrastructure to support inforce policy owner services for annuity products sold through TPD channels and NYL Direct. Diaz oversees the implementation of objectives, policies, procedures and standards for various teams including, call center, inforce services and claims. She is also responsible for comprehensive shared services support across TPD Client Service Operations and Customer Experience (new business and producer services) including training programs, quality measurement programs, audit liaison, and reporting. Additionally, she leads a career growth program and related initiatives in support of all Retail Annuities employees. Diaz has gained extensive experience in the financial services industry. During her career, she has held numerous leadership roles. Prior to joining New York Life, she served as Assistant Vice President for Essex Corporation, a third party marketer. She graduated from St. John’s University with a B.S. degree in Business Administration. Diaz is a New York State life insurance agent and is FINRA licensed as an investment representative (Series 6) and as a registered principal (Series 26). She currently serves as a mentor in Baruch College’s Executives on Campus Mentorship Program.
Grace Puma is the Senior Vice President and Chief Supply Officer of PepsiCo. Puma leads a Global Supply Team comprised of Global Logistics, Global Procurement, and the PepsiCo Global Concentrate Solutions business. Globally, PepsiCo has 22 different brands generating more than $1 billion each in annual retail sales with net revenues of over $66 billion. In her current role as CSO, she has strategic leadership accountabilities for 12 concentrate manufacturing operations, ~$26B of purchase spend and ~3000 worldwide employees. Her scope of responsibility includes driving: enterprise supply chain strategy; productivity; commodity risk management; concentrate plant health/safety; product quality and supply service to PepsiCo’s businesses. Puma is a seasoned executive experienced at transforming organizations into globally connected, locally wired business functions that drive performance. Prior to joining PepsiCo, Puma was Chief Procurement Officer for United Airlines. She held various senior leadership positions in global procurement at Kraft Foods. Her early career was in strategic procurement at Motorola and Gillette. Recognized as a top Hispanic leader, Puma is valued for her ability to find innovative solutions, building strong business relationships and developing talent. Puma holds a B.A. in Business Administration and Economics from Illinois Benedictine University. She is a current board member for Williams-Sonoma. In 2017, Puma was ranked as the #4 Most Powerful Latina by FORTUNE magazine and the Association of Latino Professionals for America. In 2016, she was recognized as the “Executive of the Year” by LATINA Stylemagazine.
Mercedes Figueroa Mondragon is currently responsible for Logistics Procurement, Customs, Inbound and Outbound Logistics for FCA Mexico’s operations. This broad role requires overseeing critical, tactical operations as part of managing the transportation of parts and materials from Mexican Suppliers to FCA’s Mexican plants. In addition, she also manages the transportation of finished vehicles produced in Mexico, the United States, Canada, Europe, Brazil and Asia to Mexican Dealers as well as the transportation of Mexican produced vehicles to NAFTA, Europe and Latino American markets. One of Mondragon’s key activities is her Customs responsibility role that enables the efficient and timely flow of parts and finished vehicles across international borders. Mondragon also strives to help grow and develop the next generation of leaders. In 2014, Figueroa initiated the Women’s Forum at FCA Mexico initiative. The Forum addresses the need for development and coaching/mentoring for career professional women at FCA to become leaders and executives at the corporation. The annual Forum concludes with final presentations to directors and the CEO. An inspiration and motivator, Mondragon’s department received a first-place award from FCA Mexico Motor Citizens Program for San Lorenzo Huitzizilapan river trash cleaning. In addition, she is an active participant in the ‘Goal with a Cause’ event to raise funds for disabled children, and “Here Nobody Surrenders” race fundraiser for kid’s cancer. Ultimately, she is giving of her time and talent inside and outside of FCA.
Over 800 companies were surveyed to produce the LATINA Style 50 Report for 2017. The companies were evaluated on a variety of metrics such as employee statistics, recruitment, training, retention, employee benefits, advancement opportunities for women and additional factors such as leadership programs and Latina representation in senior positions.
Due to the wide scope of questions, different departments within the company collaborate to provide the most accurate and updated information. The process can take weeks to months depending on the company structure. After the completed survey is submitted it is carefully reviewed by the LATINA Style committee. Every answer is carefully reviewed and measured. Each company and its programs are also thoroughly examined. Companies are evaluated using a scoring system, researched information on the company, interpretation of the written responses provided in the survey and public information. All information is kept confidential by LATINA Style.
The LATINA Style team is in contact with the company representatives to ask additional questions and further compile research to confirm survey gatherings. The final survey includes questions on their highest-ranking Latina, Hispanic affinity groups, recruitment efforts, supplier diversity information, and much more. A number of confidential interviews are conducted with Latinas in the companies selected and a section on veterans is also included.
The final ranking is not based only on the published chart. The chart is only a portion of the final review. Each survey is carefully reviewed to ensure that all information and opportunities for Latinas is taken into consideration.
The LATINA Style team wants to thank all of the companies who participated in the 2017 LATINA Style Report. Every year your participation helps provide our community and our readers with the most accurate insight into the top companies for Latinas to work for. Participation in the survey provides companies an opportunity to monitor their progress from year to year, as well as benchmarking themselves against other leading companies in their industry. We thank you for your participation and entrusting us with your information.
With an unblemished record of participation since 1998 and always placing at the very top of the list, Prudential Financial, Inc. has distinguished itself since the very beginning as a company who nurtures its associates and paves their road for a successful career. That is one of the reasons why they have been recognized with practically every award that exists on diversity and inclusion. Sustaining through the years a top level of excellence is not possible without a full commitment from the very top. We thank Chairman & CEO John R. Strangfeld and the Prudential Financial, Inc.’s Board of Directors including Gilbert F. Casellas and George Paz for their vision, leadership and continued dedication to empower Latinas in the workplace. With one of the company’s core values being respect for each other, Prudential Financial, Inc. has found a way to empower their associates; women or men, despite diverse backgrounds, countries and nationalities. With 49,000 employees in 47 countries and territories, the company has to perform a delicate balancing act staying on message across the borders. Yanela Frias, Senior Vice President and Head of Investment & Pension Solutions, the highest-ranking Latina in the company and one of the leading Latinas in the financial industry, has spent 20 successful years with Prudential Financial, Inc., a clear example of how a Latina can succeed in this special company. Congratulations Prudential Financial Inc.!
Written by Paul Roldan, Senior Partner
Allgen Financial Advisors, Inc
Uncertainty is prevalent in the United States as we’ve witnessed a change of presidential administration, worldwide violence, racial tensions, and challenges to traditional pillars of this country including diversity and inclusion. The questioning of value when it comes to diversity of thought and culture has infiltrated all societal institutions including government and education. Yet, in the midst of uncertain times throughout recent history, LATINA Style continues to challenge the world with its claim that investing in Latinas makes sense on all societal fronts.
Since 1998, LATINA Style has recognized companies that are committed to diversity and inclusion in their respective workforce, especially those that provide career advancement opportunities for Hispanic women. Each year, LATINA Style chooses 50 companies (LS50) via an extensive survey as being the most sensitive to Latinas’ needs and goals in the workplace and that provide the best career opportunities for Latinas in the U.S. Since 2001 we have tracked the stocks of the Top 50.
Using moral or values based criteria to invest has been attempted via “socially responsible funds” (investment funds that use certain value or moral principles to invest, such as not investing in casinos or tobacco companies). This type of investing, however, has been critiqued as underperforming the stock market at large due to limited availability of investment options for investors. While potentially satisfying an investor’s quest to promote a moral or philosophical value, investments are ultimately judged by performance or total return.
LATINA Style challenged this critique by commissioning Allgen Financial Advisors, Inc. (www.allgenfinancial.com) a Registered Investment Advisory Firm based in Florida, to test and compare the returns of companies in the LS50 to the stock market at large. Using the S&P 500 index to represent the market at large, Allgen Financial Advisors, Inc. compiled yearly returns of the S&P 500 vs. yearly returns equally allocated among the LS50 for the respective years.
The S&P 500 gained 11.96% in 2016. Comparatively, an investment in the LS50 would have increased by 25.98%. When aggregated with hypothetical performance of the index and real returns of the S&P 500 since 2001, the chart below shows the LS50 outperforming the S&P 500 over that time period overall. The yearly average for the LS50 was 10.63% better than that of the S&P500 from 2001 through 2016. In real dollars, a $100,000 hypothetical investment in the LS50 in the beginning of 2001 would have resulted in a final account balance of $402,953 while an equivalent investment in the S&P500 would have resulted in a final account balance of $232,791 at the end of 2016. That represents a 73% positive cumulative difference ($170,161 more) for an investor choosing to invest in the LS50 index versus the S&P500.
|Average Annual Real Return since 2001*|
|LS 50 Index||18.93%|
As seen in the graph, investing in the LS50 for this period would have more than quadrupled an investor’s initial investment whereas a similar investment in the stock market would have doubled the initial investment. This performance takes into account that the LS50 underperformed the S&P 500 five times during the 16 years studied. Yet, even with these underperforming years, longer term returns have consistently shown the LS50 outperforming the S&P500 index overall.
While the analysis is by no means comprehensive in that there are multiple other variables to consider when making investment decisions, it does provide an interesting consideration in a time when the value of cultural diversity is being questioned. As such, these results have affirmed again that investing in companies that live out responsible, social practices, as do the LS50, can be morally beneficial while financially prudent.
*This analysis is based on available data at the time of analysis. Some company performances have been omitted as they no longer exist or were not publicly traded. This analysis and returns are also based on a yearly rebalancing of the portfolio to take into account the different companies that are chosen as part of the index each year and an equal weighting of each company. In addition, the measured performance and conclusions derived therein reflect a retrospective look at market performance as the study is conducted after the companies have been selected. It is never prudent to invest based on historical stock performance alone. In addition, the LS50 index is not a real market index but rather a dynamic collection of companies as chosen yearly by LATINA Style magazine. The rates of return and performance illustrated do not reflect any costs associated with investing in either index.
As such, the above article should not be construed, nor is it written to provide financial advice as individual situations may vary and past performance is not indicative of future results. Any decision to invest in equity markets should be consulted with a financial professional.
One of the highest achievements a corporate executive can aspire to is to be asked to serve on a corporate board. Diverse boardrooms are good for business by bringing different insights, experiences, and guidance to the table — all essential components in today’s global environment. Although women have made significant strides in the corporate workplace, statistics show that women, especially Latinas, still have a long way to reach parity in corporate America. Catalyst, a leading nonprofit organization with a mission to accelerate progress for women through workplace inclusion, provides us with insight on the current landscape, ideas and solutions to make progress.
According to Catalyst, women hold 19.9 percent of the board positions of S&P 500 and only 4.4 percent of those board seats are held by Latinas. It has become more critical than ever with the increasing growth of the Hispanic population that companies and their boards reflect those who they serve. Yet, most companies still have very low representation of women on boards, and even less Latinas.
Among the LATINA Style 50 Companies, there are seven Latinas who serve on their boards. These Latinas exemplify the best of what a professional can achieve with the right balance of hard work, leadership, talent, and passion. These Latinas willingly share their knowledge, offering financial insights, wisdom, and leadership in business, government and their community. They are defying the odds and are helping to form a pipeline for more diverse boards.