The National Puerto Rican Day Parade (NPRDP) is the largest demonstration of cultural pride in the nation. Now in its 61st year, the parade takes place from 44th Street to 79th Street along Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, in honor of the 3.5 million inhabitants of Puerto Rico and over 5 million people residing in the United States.
Reborn in 2014, our programs and events focus on promoting Culture, Arts and Education, with special tributes to prominent, historical figures and campaigns to raise awareness of important issues in the community. We are also committed to advancing the pursuit of higher education, awarding scholarships to students of Puerto Rican descent.
Each year, NPRDP hosts a variety of cultural, educational and social, cultural and social events throughout the New York City leading up to the day of the Parade. These include the Education Leadership Awards, Rising Stars Challenge, 152nd Street Cultural Festival, Annual Parade Mass at Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, and the Gala Fundraiser Banquet.
National Puerto Rican Day Parade, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit tax exempt organization and we rely heavily on the support of its sponsors and donations from the community to help produce the events that make up the largest demonstration of cultural pride in the United States. All donations are tax deductible to the full extent permissible by law.
The mission of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade, Inc. is to create a national awareness and appreciation of the Puerto Rican culture and its contribution to the United States.
An iconic institution for over half a century, the mission of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade (NPRDP) is to create awareness and appreciation of Puerto Rican culture and history, as well as to highlight our community’s contributions to the global society. Under the theme Un Pueblo, Muchas Voces (One Nation, Many Voices), NPRDP celebrates the creativity and diversity of thought in Puerto Rico and across our patria extendida (diaspora).
The NPRDP delivers on its mission by producing and hosting a series of events and programs that are designed to celebrate and advance Art, Culture and Education in the Puerto Rican community, both in Puerto Rico and the mainland U.S. NPRDP is committed to promoting the pursuit of higher education through its annual scholarship program, having expanded the NPRDP Scholarship Program 20-fold since 2013, awarding a total of $200,000 to 100 exceptional high school and college students of Puerto Rican descent in 2018.
The National Puerto Rican Day Parade Board Members graciously & generously donate their time and expertise to make the parade a monumental success, year after year. In compliance with our bylaws and given our commitment to succession planning we welcomed three new board members in 2019.
Louis Maldonado, Chair
Louis Maldonado is a consummate marketing professional and champion for the Hispanic community. He is Partner and Managing Director at d expósito & Partners, an advertising and marketing agency specializing in Hispanic marketing, where he leads key agency accounts, including AARP, as well as pro-bono assignments, such as the National Puerto Day Parade and the José Limón Dance Foundation. Additionally, he is integrally involved in new business development, leading several new business pitches that have significantly contributed to the agency’s growth. He also played a key leadership role on the team that developed the award-winning, integrated, Hispanic communications campaign for the 2010 Census. His account leadership has yielded several awards for the agency’s work, including a David Ogilvy Award from the Advertising Research Foundation, several Telly Awards, and a Hispanic Account Planning Excelencia Award. Prior to joining d expósito & Partners, Louis worked at The Marketing Store in Oakbrook, IL, where he was the Account Director overseeing the McDonald’s national Hispanic promotions and brand activation activity, including the LoMcXimo de la Música concert tour, the FIFA World Cup and Mexican National Team activations and the Hispanic overlay to the largest, national promotion, McDonald’s Monopoly.
Prior to his work at The Marketing Store, Louis worked at The Bravo Group, as well as general market ad shop, Warwick-Baker-O’Neill. While at Bravo, he worked in the OTC and Pharmaceutical categories where he led the Wyeth Consumer Healthcare, GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis, and AstraZeneca teams. Louis also led the Philip-Morris USA business, handling the Youth Smoking Prevention and QuitAssist brands. Other Hispanic marketing experience includes work on the Pfizer, H&R Block and Hellmann’s/Best Foods teams. While at Warwick-Baker-O’Neill, Louis worked on brands like French’s Mustard, Frank’s RedHot Hot Sauce and Magner’s Irish Cider.
In addition to his work at d expósito & Partners, Louis has served as guest speaker at premier conferences in Marketing and Advertising, including the ANA Masters of Marketing Conference and LatinVision CEO Summit. He has also guest lectured at several prestigious university MBA programs, including Columbia University, New York University and Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business.
In early 2014, Louis was appointed to the Board of Directors of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade, where he was instrumental in implement in ushering a new era for an iconic institution. His work, in partnership with his fellow board members, resulted in an Emmy nomination for the 2014 Parade broadcast and laid a solid, fiscally sound foundation from which to build in 2015 and beyond. Louis also serves on the Board of Directors for the José Limón Dance Foundation, he sits on the Latina Advisory Panel for Girls Inc. Formerly, he was part of the Next Generation Council for the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Americas and provided pro-bono consultation to Start Strong Bronx, an organization dedicated to fostering healthy, positive relationships to prevent teen dating violence and abuse.
Louis earned an MBA from Indiana University, with concentrations in Marketing and International Business. He completed his undergraduate studies at Baldwin-Wallace College, where he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration and Music. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Louis is also a professional clarinetist and avid musician. He and his life partner, Wilson Guzman, reside in New Jersey and are proud parents of their Standard Schnauzer, Picasso.
Vincent Torres, Vice Chair of Operations
Vincent Torres serves as Vice Chair of Operations for the National Puerto Rican Day Parade Board of Directors.
Born and raised in New York City “Vinny” has been involved with the non-profit sector for over 25 years. As Director of Positive Workforce, a Construction advocacy organization dedicated to obtaining gainful employment opportunities for local and minority building trade workers, he has been responsible for over 10,000 placements in the construction industry. Vinny currently is a board member of El Barrio/East Harlem Community Board 11. He has an important role in initiating and reviewing planning, land use and zoning matters, the City budget, municipal service delivery and many other advocacy matters relating to the welfare of East Harlem. With a number of monthly public committee meeting covering a range of important community issues, Vinny currently serves both the Economic Development and Land Use Committees.
Dora Díaz, Vice Chair of Communications
Rosevelie Marquez Morales, Corporate Secretary
Ms. Márquez Morales is past president of the Puerto Rican Bar Association and general counsel of the Hispanic National Bar Association. She has served as co-chair of the New York State Bar Association’s Committee on Diversity and Inclusion, and chair of the Defense Research Institute’s Diversity Committee.
Ms. Márquez Morales received a J.D. from Fordham University School of Law and a B.A. from Barnard College, Columbia University.
Rosa J. Gutierrez, Treasurer
Rosa J. Gutierrez (MBA, AIAF) serves as Treasurer and Executive Board member for the National Puerto Rican Day Parade, Inc.
Ms. Gutierrez recently served as Chief Executive Officer for the Puerto Rican Family Institute, Inc., a not-for-profit, multi-program health and human services organization operating in New York and Puerto Rico and as a Board Member for the Hope for Families and Children Foundation (HFFC), the supporting organization and fundraising arm of the Puerto Rican Family Institute.
Ms. Gutierrez has over 30 years of experience in the Insurance Finance sector with her last role of Vice President of Finance for American International Group (AIG). Ms. Gutierrez also served as Business Leader and President of the AIG Latino Network; an Employee Resource Group.
Ms. Gutierrez received her MBA in Finance from Benedictine University. She has also earned the designation of Associate in Insurance Accounting and Finance (AIAF) is completing the designation of Associate of Regulatory and Compliance (ARC) and received a Certificate in Non-Profit Management from the State University of New York, Purchase College.
Nilda L. Oyola, Education Committee Chair
My name is Nilda L. Quintana Oyola. I am the Vice President of Sales at DOC Brands, Inc, a manufacturer of niche oral care products. I have over 30 years of experience in diverse areas of the manufacturing/distributing industry including supply chain, quality and process development of oral care products within the company.
I am a proponent of education and am dedicated to ensuring future leaders are made.
Alan Taveras Sepúlveda
Born in San Juan, June 17th, 1987. Father Dominican and mother Puerto Rican but raised in Cupey, San Juan. Graduated from Universidad del Sagrado Corazón with a bachelor’s degree in Advertising and studied and MBA with a concentration in IT management from Universidad de Palermo in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He co-founded Très Epic a digital production boutique, the social media movement #standupforpuertorico and Brands Of, the e-commerce for local brands. Brands OF was a part of the second cohort of Parallel 18. He is very involved in the local entrepreneurship ecosystem focusing on local start-ups and innovation. Member of the board of directors of the Festival de La Palabra and collaborator of the Instituto Nueva Escuela. His passion for innovation, business, self-management, education, and his country is what drives his work.
Since becoming a union member in 1985, Eduardo Rosario has been an activist leader holding numerous elected and appointed positions in the union movement. He was an organizer and chair of the Community Services committee for the Northern California Conference of Newspaper Unions during the Northern California Newspaper Strike of November 1994. He later became president of Graphic Communications International Union Local 4, executive board member of the San Francisco Labor Council (AFL-CIO), as well as president of the San Francisco chapter of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA).
As a member of the executive board of the San Francisco Labor Council (AFL-CIO), he has coordinated international conferences such as the Western Hemisphere Conference Against NAFTA and Privatization that brought together 413 delegates from 21 nations from throughout the Americas, and the Open World Conference that brought together 560 delegates from 56 nations from around the globe. He has proudly represented the U.S. labor movement as a juror to the International Conference Against Child Labor and Forced Labor, held in Mexico City, and was a member of the National AFL-CIO delegation to the People’s Summit held in Santiago, Chile. Today he is the Contract Administration Coordinator for AFSCME Local 375 at District Council 37 in New York City.
A fellow of the Cornell University/Worker Institute, he has earned a Master of Arts in Labor Studies from the CUNY Graduate Center/School of Professional Studies, a Bachelor of Arts in Labor Studies from the National Labor College, as well as a Certificate and Advanced Certificate in Labor Studies from Cornell University. His Master degree thesis was titled, “U.S. Labor Combating Environmental Injustices: organizing opportunities locally and globally”, as well as his Bachelor degree thesis titled, “The Dismantling of the Manufacturing Clause: another victim of deregulation”, which earned him a “Distinguished Paper Award” from the National Labor College. Hermano Rosario is the president of the New York City chapter of LCLAA the largest chapter in National LCLAA, and is the first person to ever become president of a LCLAA chapter on both West and East Coasts.
Eduardo is married and a proud father of three daughters.
Evelyn DeJesus is the vice president for education, National Vice President for AFT, National Vice President for LCLAA. She earned a BA in Psychology, a MS Ed in Education and Public Administration from Baruch College, an MS Ed in Reading and Curriculum Development from Fordham University and an additional 30 credits in Reading from New York University.
A skilled teacher and trained administrator, Evelyn DeJesus is a forceful advocate for justice undaunted and unafraid to speak truth to power.
DeJesus traveled an unexpected road from an engaged parent to educator and trade unionist. Her activism began when one of her daughters became ill during a school construction project. DeJesus publicly exposed the toxic environment. Her courageous whistleblowing actions led to what’s now commonly known as the Great Asbestos Scandal of 1993.
DeJesus’ innovative instructional strategies soon became the model within District Two for Collaborative Team Teaching and her classroom became a lab site for visitors and instructional leaders throughout the state and nation. Distinguished among educators in her district, DeJesus was selected for inclusion in the Aspiring Leaders Institute for prospective principals. While DeJesus graduated with all the qualifications to attain a school leadership position, she channeled her passion and full commitment to the UFT.
DeJesus was tapped to become the District Representative for District 2 and subsequently chosen as the Manhattan borough representative, a position she held for seven years prior to becoming the vice president for education in the fall of 2014.
DeJesus’s insight and counsel is sought in a variety of key positions at the state and national levels through her service on the NYSUT Board of Directors and NYSUT Executive Council, the New York State Labor and Religion Coalition and the Executive Board of the AFT Latino Caucus. DeJesus was elected as an AFT Vice President at its national convention in July 2014 where she sits on the AFT Executive Council Policy and Program and Human and Civil Rights committees, AFT English Language Learners Cadre, and Chair of the AFT Latino Task Force offering program and policy recommendations at the federal level. In 2018 DeJesus was appointed to the Executive Regional Board for the National Association of Bilingual Education. In 2017 DeJesus was appointed to the Board of Directors for the National Puerto Rican Day Parade. In December of 2018 DeJesus was appointed to the Board of Directors for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. Additionally in August 2014, DeJesus was elected as the AFT’s National Vice President of Latino Advancement. She is a chairman and leading voice directing our own UFT Charter School and a member of the UFT Executive Board.
DeJesus’s spirituality extends into every aspect of her and she credits her faith for her achievements. DeJesus is also a New York State Chaplain under the NYS Chaplain Task Force. DeJesus is the proud wife of Louie and the mother of two beautiful daughters, Tiffany and Kristina. She has been blessed with four grandchildren.
José “Fofito” Morales
Born and raised in Santurce, Puerto Rico, JOSÉ “FOFITO” MORALES is an art promoter and cultural manager, a visionary leader in the independent art scene of the island. His passion for Puerto Rican heritage has served as his inspiration. His contributions to the independent music scene in Puerto Rico include world known venues like El Café Seda and Aquí se puede, in Old San Juan and La Respuesta, home to Puerto Rico’s underground & independent artists. This last venue has revived and served as a catalyst for the contemporary art and cultural Santurcina’ scene since it opened its doors in 2008.
Looking to reconnect with the great cultural scene present in the historic Puerto Rican & Latino neighborhood of El Barrio in NYC, he created La Marqueta Retoña in 2013, an initiative to revitalize the social and cultural elements of this historical site through art, music and community activities. His vision is for La Marqueta Retoña to become a strong bridge and connection between Puerto Rico and New York, celebrating our Latin culture, educating and instilling a sense of pride in the next generation of residents living in El Barrio and beyond. In 2018 he once again played a critical role in the efforts to revive the economy in Santurce after hurricane María with his project Dulce Santurce. José Morales is the producer of the murals festival, Los Muros Hablan and Monument Art New York City and the proud father of Liliana and Silvio.
José Rodriguez has worked in all levels of government for the past 25 years. He has worked with City, State, and Federal agencies to educate communities of color on ways to improve their quality of life, education standards, and performance via self-advocacy.
The relationships José has nurtured throughout his career affords him a certain credibility with Legislators and Community Organizations as someone that appreciates the process and their perspective. Throughout his career, José has worked to improve the socio-economic conditions of those constituencies he has been charged with by reinforcing the importance of taking personal responsibility.
José is currently serving the people of New York City as a Senior Advisor to Councilman Rafael Salamanca.
José resides in the Bronx with his wife of 15 years Prisca-Salazar-Rodriguez and sons José Andres Rodriguez, and Javier A. Matos-Rodriguez.
Lillian Rodriguez López
Lillian Rodriguez Lopez is a government relations, communications and strategy consultant for varied enterprises across the continental US, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. She previously served as Vice President, Stakeholder Relations and Customer PAC Support for the Coca-Cola Company. In this role, she was responsible for fostering dialogue and positive relationships with the company’s key stakeholders and supporting customer channels on PAC-related issues in North America.
Lillian previously served as Director, Latin Affairs for the Coca-Cola Company helping to position KO as the leading corporate citizen in the U.S. Hispanic community by managing external relationships, communications, and sponsorships. From 2004 – 2012, she served as President of the Hispanic Federation (HF), a non-profit membership organization of 100 Latino health and human service agencies in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania.
Prior to her departure from HF to join Coca-Cola, she was elected by Hispanic national community leaders to chair the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, a coalition of the leading Hispanic national organizations focused on federal public policy. She also worked with various diversity councils at major corporations having served on the Nielsen, News Corporation and Comcast councils. Her efforts have resulted in her being recognized by People en Espanol as one of the 25 Most Powerful Hispanic Women in the country in 2010 and as one of the 25 Most Influential Hispanics in the country in 2009. She currently serves on the boards of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, La Amistad, and Chairs the Hispanic Advisory Council of the Nielsen Corporation, and the Board of Business Advisors for the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators.
Ms. Rodríguez López has a B.A. in Communications with a concentration in Broadcast Journalism from Fordham University.
Lorraine A. Cortés-Vázquez
Senior Advisor to New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio appointed Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez as Senior Advisor in February 2017. Cortés-Vázquez works within the Mayor’s Office of Intergovernmental Affairs. She advises the Mayor’s Office of Community Affairs and Public Engagement Units and assists other agencies throughout the administration to engage the public and expand community outreach across New York City. As Senior Advisor, Cortés-Vázquez engages the Latino community around key issues, including criminal justice reform; economic justice; housing and economic development; immigration; job creation; M/WBE contracting and outreach; and Universal pre-K.
Prior to serving in the Mayor’s Office, Cortés-Vázquez was Senior Vice President of Corporate Relations and Government Affairs at EmblemHealth, where she was responsible for EmblemHealth’s relationships with key government, community and industry stakeholders, better positioning EmblemHealth for new growth opportunities. Cortés-Vázquez was also the Executive Vice President for Multicultural Markets and Engagement at the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) where she developed a comprehensive 5-year strategic plan. At AARP, she ensured that the interests of multicultural age 50-plus audiences were integrated into everything AARP does, with the goal of increasing multicultural presence among AARP membership and increasing AARP’s involvement in those communities.
Before joining AARP, Cortés-Vázquez was New York State’s 65th Secretary of State, and the first Hispanic appointee to serve in that role. She also served as Vice President of Government and Public Affairs at Cablevision Systems Corporation, a leading media, entertainment, and telecommunications company. She brought to this position a distinguished career in the nonprofit, government and corporate sectors that extends more than 30 years. Her work in the nonprofit sector has gained her national recognition and numerous awards.
From 1998 to 2004, Cortés-Vázquez served as President of the Hispanic Federation, a nonprofit network of Latino health and human service agencies with a footprint throughout the East Coast. She has extensive experience creating community partnerships to leverage civic participation and increasing the visibility of educational initiatives. In the early 1990s, she served as Executive Director of ASPIRA of New York, the nation’s oldest and largest nonprofit Latino youth leadership development and education advocacy agency. Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez obtained her undergraduate degree from Hunter College and earned a master’s degree from New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. She is a Toll Fellow and has earned certificates from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and Columbia University’s School Professional Studies.
Raquel M. Ortiz Rodríguez is an Anthropologist, Educator, Social Justice Activist, and Writer who studies, celebrates, creates and shares stories. Her writing and scholarship focuses on the visual arts, culture, literature, music, and identity and includes El Arte de la Identidad (University of Granada, 2011). Dr. Ortiz has worked as a Museum Educator at The Brooklyn Museum and El Museo del Barrio and as an editor and writer for Santillana, creating textbooks and educational material for children in Puerto Rico and the U.S.A. In 2013 she directed the documentary Memories on the Wall exploring the concept community murals and identity with teens in El Barrio.
Currently, she creates curriculum and educational materials (K-14) for the Puerto Rican Cultural Ambassadors program for the Center for Puerto Rican Studies (Hunter College) and teaches at Medgar Evers College (City University of New York). Dr. Ortiz is the author of the picture book Sofi and the Magic, Musical Mural (Arte Público Press, 2015). Sofi Paints her Dreams / Sofi pinta sus sueños and ¡Bomba! Dancing with the Talking Drums / ¡Bomba! Bailando con los tambores que hablan will be published by Arte Público Press in 2019.
Viviana M. Pagán-Muñiz
Viviana M. Pagán-Muñiz born and raised in Puerto Rico with roots from San Juan, Ponce, and Mayaguez. I am a forward-thinking communications and marketing executive that thrives on innovative projects and emerging practices, particularly in the customer experience, digital marketing, and communications fields. My digital marketing and customer care career started in Puerto Rico, took me to Latin America followed by Washington, DC where I currently work for AARP to proudly serve our 38-million members.
Customer experience, multicultural markets and complex projects that drive change management are my fuel. I love to lead teams in environments that require collaboration, co-creation, and relationship management across channels and functions. Ideating, planning and overseeing the execution of projects from start to finish is one of my biggest passions. I champion great causes and talented people. I am honored to support the National Puerto Rican Day Parade to shine a light on our culture, our talent and the students who represent us in Puerto Rico, the United States and the world.