Madison, Wis. (WMTV) – The Wisconsin Latino Chamber of Commerce held an event Saturday to celebrate the contributions of Latino business owners statewide.
The evening will include dinner, entertainment and remarks from CEO and President Jessica Cavazos. She said that the show has not been held in three years and she is happy that this season is finally happening.
“It’s very important to me. I was crying because it was so emotional. Someone told me that we can’t have as many people as we have now. There are only about 60,000 Latinos in central Wisconsin and I feel like I proved them wrong,” Cavasos said.
Cavasos explained that there are many businesses represented through the event.
“We’re from Venezuela, Mexico, Cuba, Colombia, Peru — Madison is rich in culture, and this is a platform to bring it out. It’s our communities, our roots and our cultures that we tell people about our businesses,” Cavasos said.
One of the many awards presented was 9-year-old Alison Hernandez, who is the face of El Gran Taco Gato in Madison, which owns her parents’ restaurant. Hernandez helped her family serve customers and created TikToks to bring in business. She admires her mother’s determination after her parents lost their jobs and opened their restaurant during the pandemic. Today, she walked away with the Young Entrepreneur of the Year award.
It became a dream lifestyle for a family. Carlos and Carolina Vasquez won Family Owned Business of the Year. Originally from Nicaragua, Carolina came to the United States twelve years ago chasing the American dream, but along the way she met her husband, Carlos, a business parker. The family owns one restaurant in Platteville and another in Richland Center. The family owns a tortilla bakery that they created during the pandemic.
Two women born and raised in Colombia came to Verona with their husbands to create a coffee shop. During the pandemic, Laura and Sara Serrato thought it would be a good idea to serve the public with a popular morning drink. The women decided to not only serve a hot cup of joe, but to make their shop a safe place for culture, music and art. His family took home the Incubator of the Year award.
There were two entrepreneur awards given to Catia Jimenez and Hector Rivera. Jimenez graduated from college and pursued a career in public health. She now works at Mount Horeb Hemp, LLC at the School of Medicine and Public Health of Wisconsin-Madison. Horeb Hemp is a small hemp farm located in south central Wisconsin.
Rivera graduated with a degree in construction management and began his career in Waunakee. Over the years, he mastered his skills in drywall and painting. He lost his job in the pandemic and now owns his own business, Rivera Construction and Service.
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