You learn a lot of things on Twitter. Like Bin-Laden's death. That J-Lo and Marc Anthony are finito. That @InvisibleObama is long on funny but short on clever.
I also found out that I had been named by U.S. Hispanic-centered website Voxxi News one of the most powerful Latinas on social media when Univision anchor María Elena Salinas tweeted:
Little ol' me in the company of journalism pioneers María Elena and NPR and PBS' María Hinojosa, women that blazed the trail in American journalism for women and Latinos.
And women who are focused on spreading social good, changing the world one tweet at a time such as LATISM's Ana Roca Castro and Tech.Food.Life's Eva Smith.
This is an honor for one reason--the thousands of women who have found community and hear their voice in The Wise Latina Club. When I began TWLC, I thought no one beside Mami and Lil' Sis would read. It was a way to write my way back whole, healing after a brutal career in networks news, topped with the cherry--the big, colossal failure of not having my contract renewed in the depths of our recession although behind the guise of the crappy economy was the dirty jockeying-for-favor politics of mediocre middle managers.
This is an honor for one reason--the woman who approaches me before we sit down at the National Hispanic for the Arts Foundation Gala Awards dinner and thanks me (!) for TWLC because finally, she's see herself and all the women she grew up all over the website, "like if we were the norm" which she still doesn't see when she turns on the TV set on Sunday morning to watch the network public affairs shows.
This is an honor for one reason--the recent grad who thanks me for writing about my parents and asks me privately after I keynoted George Washington University's Hispanic Heritage Month kick-off event, how I manage to be as close to my traditional papis yet be a Latina woman thriving in our modern world? She confesses hers have all but disowned her because she didn't go back to her small farming community in California to marry the local baker. Instead, she decided to pursue her dreams in the big city on the other side of the country of Washington, DC.
All these women are versions of the same "one" reason, really the soul of TWLC: Incredible, strong, fierce, multi-dimensional American women who are proud of their Hispanic heritage, feel invisible in the mainstream, yet are making an impact on our country in ways that are yet to be determined.
TWLC is about you.
This recognition is your recognition.
Continue speaking because we hear you.
Whether they’re leading dialogue within the Latino community, challenging politicians to tough questions or raising awareness about causes important to them, these 19 women represent our picks for the most powerful Latinas in social media.
(in alphabetical order)
Name: Midy Aponte
Bio: Aponte is the president and CEO of the Sánchez Ricardo Agency, a Washington, D.C.-based digital media and communications firm that caters to the Hispanic market. She’s also the interim executive director of the American Latino Heritage Fund, which aims to preserve Latino culture and history and increase the participation of Latinos in National Parks.
Sample Tweet: Brewed my second colada of #Bustelo. http://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Cuban_espreso … Let the writing begin! Happy Wednesday!
Name: Melissa del Bosque
Bio: Follow del Bosque’s blog La Linea for all things immigration and U.S.-Mexico border relations and catch her intriguing long-form investigations in The Texas Observer.
Sample Tweet: Reporter Mario Segura missing in Tamaulipas. He is editor of El Sol de Sur in Tampico http://bit.ly/PqX9v4
Name: Leticia Caban
Bio: Caban is a culture and lifestyle blogger, but she’s also part of Latino Rebels, an online- magazine-meets-social-media-collective dedicated to “new media, independence and mayhem.”
Sample Tweet: To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment. http://bellavidabyletty.blogspot.com/2012/08/are-you-there.html …
Name: Maria Cardona
Bio: This former senior advisor to Hillary Clinton is a Democratic strategist, contributor to CNN and a principal at the Dewey Square Group, a Washington, D.C.-based strategic communications and government relations company where Cardona founded Latinovations, which focuses on Latino issue advocacy and outreach.
Sample Tweet: Join me @CNN 8 & 10 pm hr @AC360 w @Soledad_OBrien anchoring! Will discuss #RomneyRyan2012 vision, #Medicare, distractions & more! Thoughts?
Name: Esther Cepeda
Bio: Cepeda is a nationally syndicated columnist for the Washington Post Writers Group who specializes in U.S. Latino issues. She wrote a weekly column for the Chicago Sun-Times for six years and was the city’s first Latino metro columnist.
Sample Tweet: BTW, I love the fact that HuffPost @latinovoices consistently features Asian voices. This one is particularly great: http://ow.ly/1Op5ZR
Name: Cristy Clavijo-Kish
Bio: Clavijo-Kish wears many hats: she’s the CEO at Hispanicize Digital, the founder of Los Tweens, a site dedicated to parents of diverse pre-teens, and a co-founder of the collective Latina Mom Bloggers.
Sample Tweet: Getting ready to meet @ponchodeanda for a #HuggiesLatino program with @latinamomblogs #Latinamoms – whooo!
Name: Aurelia Flores
Bio: The San Diego-based Flores is the founder of PowerfulLatinas.com, a five-year-old online venture that links up Latinas looking to learn from one another’s life lessons. She’s also a senior counsel at SAIC, a Fortune 500 technology company.
Sample Tweet: See Sundance selection Mosquita y Mari today @ Cinema Village. Want more info? http://bit.ly/OxxEpk #belatino
Name: Maria Hinojosa
Bio: The award-winning and trail-blazing Mexican-American journalist is currently the anchor and managing editor of NPR’s Latino USA. She’s also the host of her own talk show, Maria Hinojosa: One-on-One, during which she interviews prominent U.S. artists, writers, activists and civic leaders.
Sample Tweet: We are profiling the most influential Latino you have never heard of for @NPR & @latinoUSA. On my way to speak to him in Cali now….
Name: Viviana Hurtado
Bio: A journalist with experience in print and TV, Hurtado is now the lead blogger behind The Wise Latina Club, where she writes about everything from politics and immigration to food and celebrities.
Sample Tweet: R u “surprised” by 1000s of Illegal Immigrants lining up 4 deferred action? Remember ’06 #immigration rallies? http://nyti.ms/PdDkrC #Latism
Name: Maria Teresa Kumar
Bio: As its founding executive director, Kumar is a leading force behind Voto Latino, the organization that registers and empowers Latino youth to vote. Kumar also created and directed Voto Latino’s civic engagement campaigns, boosting the organization’s digital presence.
Sample Tweet: @nytimes: When a Taste for Publicity Bites Back http://nyti.ms/OJo6d3 ” racial profiling catching up w #JoeArpaio what took so long?
Name: Adriana Maestas
Bio: Maestas is a senior contributing editor at Politic365, a news site that explores politics from a multicultural point of view, where she specializes in issues important to the Latino population.
Sample Tweet: no surprise here – Gov. Jan Brewer: No Public Benefits for Deferred Action Recipients http://bit.ly/N3KArs #DACA #dreamact
Name: Soledad O’Brien
Bio: O’Brien is one of the most prominent and visible journalists in the United States. In addition to anchoring “Starting Point” on CNN, she has hosted documentaries, including Black in America and Latino in America, for which she also wrote a companion book.
Sample Tweet: “@HspncElvis: @Soledad_OBrien Hola! Listo Para El Lunes?”// claro que si!
Name: Angélica Perez-Litwin
Bio: The New York-based Perez-Litwin is a psychologist and life coach who founded and publishes New Latina, a site that offers women advice on personal growth, empowerment and career advancement.
Sample Tweet: Latinas Open Up About Their Struggle With Weight and Beauty Ideals: “It Starts Young…”…. http://su.pr/1xSb3B #LATISM #LatinaLeadership
Name: Elianne Ramos
Bio: Based in Baltimore, Ramos is an active volunteer at LATISM, where she leads the organization’s Thursday night Twitter chats, writes the blog and serves as the vice-chair of communication and public relations. Ramos is also the CEO at her company, Speak Hispanic Communications, and a columnist for the Huffington Post’s Latino Voices.
Sample Tweet: Want to find out voting ID requirements in your state? There’s an app for that – My latest for @NBCLatino http://goo.gl/g1odm #latism
Name: Ana Roca Castro
Bio: Roca Castro is best-known as the founder of LATISM, but the Albany-based entrepreneur is also the CEO of Premier Transmedia, a company that works on building apps, educational games and interactive social media presences for corporate brands.
Sample Tweet: With @YosAcevedo fashion editor of @PeopleenEspanol exploring opportunities for our #LatinaBloggers #Latismpic.twitter.com/vrPvcGht
Name: María Elena Salinas
Bio: One of the most prominent and recognizable Latina journalists, Salinas is co-anchor of the weekday Noticiero Univision with Jorge Ramos and co-host of Univision’s Saturday program, “Aquí y Ahora.” She can be found tweeting in both English and Spanish.
Sample Tweet: I will be wearing red shoes on the newscast today, tuesday, in support of @RedShoesMove to promote women’s professional growth.
Name: Eva Smith
Bio: The Southern California-based Smith is an IT architect and tech and lifestyle blogger. A co-founder of Latina Mom Bloggers, she can be found writing at her blog, Tech.Food.Life.
Sample Tweet: Featured Latinos in Digital Media is out! http://bit.ly/gpv6nf ▸ Top stories today via @LatinaLeader @RachlWhite @yesiortiz
Name: Roxana A. Soto
Bio: Together with Ana Flores, Soto founded SpanglishBaby, a site about raising bilingual and bicultural children. Soto, who is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, and Flores also authored the soon-to-be-released book “Bilingual is Better.”
Sample Tweet: 6 Lessons About Raising Bilingual Children from a Non-Native Speaker http://spanglishbaby.com/2012/06/6-lessons-about-raising-bilingual-children-from-a-non-native-speaker/ … Lots to consider, especially if ur getting started
Name: Eliana Tardío
Bio: The Ft. Myers-based Tardío can be found blogging at elianatardio.com, where she writes about what it’s like to be the mother of two children with Down syndrome. Her positive and uplifting tweets are in English and Spanish.
Sample Tweet: #divorce of parents of children with #specialneeds #disabilities @ElianaTardio @mamiverse http://bit.ly/OT5Mfe #education