Reflections from LATISM’11

I’m still overwhelmed with a ton of feelings, emotions and excitement right after LATISM’11. After every conference I can’t help but reflect around my favorite moments, the areas that could improve and the typical surprises (those details that exceeded my expectations despite of my many imperfections). Regardless of how tired we were, all the volunteers felt compelled to stick together, to unwind, to share, to LOL, to confirm our commitment to the movement, to share feedback and already improve LATISM’12. I can only say Gracias!

I’m still overwhelmed with a ton of feelings, emotions and excitement right after LATISM’11.  After every conference I can’t help but reflect around my favorite moments, the areas that could improve and the typical surprises (those details that exceeded my expectations despite of my many imperfections).  Regardless of how tired we were, all the volunteers felt compelled to stick together at the bar, to unwind, to share, to LOL, to confirm our commitment to the movement, to share feedback and already improve LATISM’12.  I can only say Gracias!

When the question came around: What were your top three moments of LATISM’11?  It was super hard for me to single out three moments.  I can tell you the first five that come to my mind today.  And I’m sure I’ll have new ones every day throughout the week since it’s impossible to reduce my tops to just five.  As I mentioned in the magazine; It takes a village to build LATISM’11 – and I meant it with every cell of my body.

My tops today:

1) The relationship between Public Service – Private Enterprises & Community: I strongly believe that this is the only way we will make a significant impact in our Latino Community.

When we have these three entities joined in conversation with the scope of finding solutions to pressing issues.  I saw this in real life during these three days.  It wasn’t like participants stuck to one track. No! everyone attended at least one of each.

Business experts were exposed to non-profit leaders and viceversa.  All in front of a very opinionated community of influencers who truly cared.  This was certainly a top. Each one of you who attended as a speaker, keynote, sponsor, partner, attendee, volunteer, staff and crew made it happen. – GRACIAS!

2) The awards ceremony: To me is was a parade of Latin@ talents and each winner who proudly stood in front of the podium with their award in hand just filled my heart with joy, emotions and often tears.

I loved seeing all the LATISM Directors taking ownership in this reconocimiento.  That moment made it so evident.  LATISM is way bigger than me or any single member.  Dolores Huerta wisppered these words more than three times: “This movement is exactly what I had been waiting for” – GRACIAS!

3) The speakers: We had over 100 speakers at LATISM’11 and their commitment to share their knowledge inspired me.  Everyone confirmed that the level of the panels was way higher than what they usually see in conferences.

This paired with a genuine desire to be an open book and share the secrets.  Trust me, this wasn’t thanks to our organization.  This was only thanks to each panelist’s commitment to say Presente and bring his/her best.  GRACIAS!

4) The sponsors: I will write about each one later, but you know very well that LATISM’11 is 80% based on sponsorship.  It would have been impossible to hold a conference on our own.

 

The part I liked the most was the way each sponsor tried his very best to customize their approach to our culture and need.  The focus was on fostering a culture of learning and they embraced that unanimously.  GRACIAS!

5) The volunteers: Mamma Mia! I was humbled to see so many of you serve incesantly. Top bank programmers driving the shuttle? Elected officials registering people? Top marketers running crazy to fix signs? Social media mavens interpreting a panel (when one of the interpreters got sick)? I would love to list each and everyone of you but I’ll dedicate a post just for that. In the meantime, GRACIAS!

I would love to hear from you.  What were your top three moments of LATISM’11? I would love to hear about it in the comments or add your post here so we can all keep track and comment.

Un Fuerte Abrazo!

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