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National Puerto Rican Day Parade Announces First Roster of Honorees and the 2024 Theme: Boricua de Corazón

Updated: Apr 10




Media Contact:

Jasmin Espada

(818) 521-3807


2024 Celebration dedicated to San Germán and Puerto Rican communities of Hawaii


Special tribute to traditional Puerto Rican folkloric dance


San Juan – (April 9, 2024) At a press conference at the Institute of Puerto Rican Culture headquarters, the Board of Directors of the National Puerto Rican Day Parade (NPRDP) made its first announcements of themes, tributes, and honorees for the 67th annual festivities. Under the 2024 theme, Boricua de Corazón, the two- week celebration of Puerto Rican culture, history, and contributions to global society culminates in its iconic procession up New York City’s Fifth Avenue on Sunday, June 9, at 11am EDT.


This year’s Parade celebration is dedicated to the municipality of San Germán, Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rican communities of Hawaii. Affectionately known as “La Ciudad de las Lomas” (City of the Hills) and settled in 1511, San Germán is Puerto Rico’s second-oldest municipality and one of its first Spanish settlements. Known for its colonial architecture, cobblestoned streets and rich cultural heritage, San Germán is home to over one 100 historic buildings, including the iconic Porta Coeli, a church and convent built in 1609. With roots that date back to the late 1800s, the Puerto Rican communities of Hawaii have built a long legacy of maintaining cultural heritage while embracing their Hawaiian identity, enriching the diverse tapestry of the Hawaiian people, and contributing to local economic development.


“The tributes to the people of San German and the Puerto Rican community in Hawaii include the eastern and western-most parts of the Puerto Rican communities across the United States,” said NPRDP Board Chair, Lillian Rodríguez Lopez. “Our 2024 theme, Boricua de Corazón, captures our collective sentiment that being Puerto Rican is central to our identity and lives in our hearts no matter where we find ourselves in the world.”


Initial Roster of 2024 Honorees

The NPRDP announced its first installment of honorees. The 2024 Madrina (Godmother) is Lisa Vélez, aka Lisa Lisa, formally of the 80’s platinum selling group Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam.

and pioneer in the genres of Latin Hip-Hop, Freestyle and Pop music, Lisa Lisa’s hit songs have made people sing and dance to her unique Latino-inspired sound. An active performer whose music spans generations and cultures, Lisa Lisa is touring this year. In 2025, Her classic hit, years since its release.


The NPRDP recognizes two distinguished veteran journalists with the Lifetime Achievement, Carmen Jovet and Jorge Rivera Nieves. Jovet is recognized for being Puerto Rico’s first female TV presenter, in 1968. Her illustrious, decades-long career has earned her numerous awards and accolades, including the Emmy, the José de Diego Award and an honorary Doctorate in Criminal Justice from John Jay College in New York City. Jorge Rivera Nieves, also a TV news anchor in Puerto Rico, is recognized for his award-winning career spanning almost half a century. He received the 2021 Silver Circle award from the Suncoast Emmy Awards in recognition for excellence in journalism and contributions to the industry.


Honored with the title of Orgullo Puertorriqueño (Puerto Rican Pride) is the virtuoso cellist, conductor and composer, Emilio Colón. Founder and director of the International Chamber Orchestra of Puerto Rico, Colón has garnered consecutive awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, Humanidades Puerto Rico, and National Endowment for the Humanities for providing access to the arts for children and communities throughout Puerto Rico and abroad. For the last 34 years, Emilio has been on the faculty of the prestigious

Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University.


Also honored with the Orgullo Puertorriqueño title are multimedia artists and cultural curators, Pedro Adorno y Cathy Vigo. Both artists have worked tirelessly to preserve and promote Puerto Rican art and culture. They founded the collective; Agua, Sal y Sereno (ASYS); and for the past 30 years have served as artistic directors for a number of theatrical works, artistic workshops, musical and dance ensembles and more. They are the creators of the iconic “cabezudos” that form part of the Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastián, which were also featured in Bad Bunny’s opening performance at the 2023 GRAMMY Awards show.


Tribute to Folkloric Dance

Music and dance are two art forms that promote Puerto Rican culture and its traditions. For that reason, NPRDP pays tribute to select folkloric dance groups that preserve, perform, and give energy to traditional Puerto Rican dance. These include:


  • Areyto Ballet Folklórico Nacional de Puerto Rico, San Juan

  • BombaYo, New York City

  • Bombazo Dance Company, New York City

  • Danza Fiesta, New York City

  • Escuela de Bomba Tata Cepeda, Kissimmee, Florida

  • Pleneros de la 21, New York City

  • Segunda Quimbamba Folkloric Center, Jersey City, NJ

Other honorees announced include:


  • Lifetime Achievement: Stacey López Acclaimed salsa dancer and professor

  • Lifetime Achievement: Jorge Rivera Nieves – Veteran television news anchor

  • Trailblazer: Wanda Díaz-Merced Sonic astrophysicist and advocate for the visually impaired

  • Trailblazer: David Antonio Santiago Sonic astrophysicist and advocate for the visually impaired

  • Sports Legend: José “Piculín” Ortiz – Former professional basketball player, FIBA Hall-of-Famer, and member of the 2004 Puerto Rico Olympic team, from San Germán

  • Ambassador: Bianca Graulau – Independent journalist and activist

  • Ambassador: Glorimar Marrero – Award-winning film writer and director, "La Pecera"

  • Ambassador: Ana Teresa Toro – Accomplished author

  • Ambassador: Rafi Mercado - Award-winning cinematographer and documentarian

  • Ambassador: Asianna Saragosa Torres – Miss Latina Hawaii, mental health advocate and social media innovator

  • Hijo de Borinquen: Andrés González – An original founder of NPRDP

  • Rising Star: Zayra Pola – Musician and timbal player

Additional honorees will be announced in early May.


Health and Well-being of Children

Every year, the NPRDP raises awareness of a prominent cause or non-profit related to issues of importance to the Puerto Rican community. In 2024, the NPRDP recognizes the work of Fundación de Niños de Puerto Rico. A non-profit organization in Puerto whose mission is to improve the quality-of-life of children diagnosed with cancer, malformations, or chronic diseases. La Fundación helps families pay for medical services and treatments not covered by health insurance plans. NPRDP recognizes Fundación de Niños for their commitment for their positive impact and commitment to assisting Puerto Rico’s most vulnerable.


2024 NPRDP Event Calendar

  • 152nd St. Cultural Festival on May 25 – Between Jackson and Tinton Streets, at 11am – 6pm

  • Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral on June 2 – Fifth Avenue and E. 51 Street, New York City, at 4pm

  • Scholarship Gala Fundraiser on June 7 – The Plaza, 768 Fifth Ave, New York City, at 6:30pm

  • 67th Annual Parade on June 9 – Fifth Ave between 44th and 79th Streets, New York City, at 11am


The National Puerto Rican Day Parade will march up New York’s Fifth Avenue, in one of United States largest cultural celebrations with an estimated attendance of one million people. The Parade will be broadcast on the WABC Channel 7 in New York at 12 noon EDT and streamed on the station’s website, abc7NY.com, and on the station’s free news and connected TV apps on Amazon FireTV, Android TV, Apple TV, and Roku. For more information about the Parade and a more details about the calendar of events, visit www.prparade.org.


The NPRDP Board of Directors thanks the following sponsors and media partners for their support in making the 67th Annual celebration possible: Corona, Manhattan Beer Distributors, the Walt Disney Company and ABC7 New York, City University of New York, Liberty Coca-Cola, the Amazing Mets Foundation, Miranda Family Fund, Acacia Network, MetroPlusHealth, Popular Bank, GFR Media and Junte Boricua, P&G, Red Bull, Lincoln Center, NBC4 and Telemundo47 in New York, Monster Energy, Dollar Tree, Rainbow Apparel, and Door Dash.


About the National Puerto Rican Day Parade

Renown for being America’s largest celebration of Puerto Rican pride and achievement, the Parade is an iconic platform for cultural preservation and collective legacy-building that was born from the New York City Puerto Rican community’s struggle for equity, inclusion, and validation in the 1950s. Under its slogan, Un Pueblo, Muchas Voces (One People, Many Voices), the NPRDP promotes Culture, Arts and Education, with special tributes to historical figures and key themes to raise awareness of critical issues and causes to our community.


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APR 9 NPRDP Eng Release - WITH EMBARGO
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