Business and Markets

The Economic State of Latinos in America

Event information
Thu Dec 9, 2021
9:00am - 4:00pm EDT
Washington, DC
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An invitation-only event hosted by Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program in collaboration with McKinsey & Company

Latinos are essential to the recovery of the U.S. after the COVID-19 pandemic. Representing 17.6 percent of the nation’s workforce and on track to become 1 in 3 workers entering the job market by 2030, Latinos are primed to be a driving force of the American economy. To fully harness the economic power and global competitiveness of the nation, we must remove the barriers that prevent Latinos in America from reaching their full potential.

This groundbreaking, nonpartisan event will focus on how much value is at stake from the current Latino wealth and opportunity gap—and what immediate actions can reverse this trend to the benefit of the whole country. In collaboration with McKinsey & Company, Aspen Institute Latinos and Society will bring together C-suite leaders across the private, public, and civic sectors to discuss game-changing pathways to advance economic mobility for Latino individuals and communities, creating a more inclusive economy and society.

Our featured Speakers

Our Event Co-Chairs

Gaddi H. Vasquez
Chair, Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program Advisory Board

Gaddi H. Vasquez is the former senior vice president of Government Affairs for Southern California Edison (SCE), one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, and its parent company, Edison International. He was responsible for government relations activities at the Federal and State level, as well as Local Public Affairs. Prior to SCE, Vasquez served as U.S. Ambassador and permanent representative to United Nations Agencies based in Rome. From 2002 to 2006, Ambassador Vasquez served as Director of the Peace Corps. He currently serves as Chair of the Advisory Board of the Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program.

Monica C. Lozano
President and CEO of College Futures Foundation

Monica C. Lozano is President and Chief Executive Officer of College Futures Foundation, a California-based private foundation. College Futures Foundation partners with organizations and leaders across the state to catalyze systemic change, increase college degree completion, and close equity gaps so that educational opportunity becomes a reality for every student, regardless of skin color, zip code, or income.

Prior to joining College Futures Foundation, Lozano had a long and accomplished career in media as editor and publisher of La Opinión, the country’s leading Spanish language daily newspaper and then as CEO of the parent company, ImpreMedia. Lozano guided the company through its evolution from a newspaper company into a multi-media content company while maintaining its core mission to inform, educate and empower the Latino community through relevant, unique, high-quality content.

After leaving ImpreMedia in 2016, Lozano joined the Aspen Institute to co-found and chair the newly created Latinos and Society Program. She serves on the Board of Directors of Apple, Bank of America, the Weingart Foundation, is Lead Independent Director for Target Corporation, and continues to be an active member of Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Advisory Board. She also served on Governor Gavin Newsom’s California Higher Education Recovery with Equity Taskforce.

Lozano has received multiple awards and distinctions and was named one of Fortune Magazine’s 50 Most Influential Latinas. She was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2016.

Our Featured Speakers

Dan Porterfield
President and CEO, Aspen Institute

Dan Porterfield is President and CEO of the Aspen Institute, a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. A native of the City of Baltimore, where he was raised by a single mother at the height of the civil rights movement, and a Rhodes Scholar, he has been recognized as a visionary strategist, transformational leader, devoted educator, and passionate advocate for justice and opportunity. Dan previously served as President of Franklin & Marshall College, where he led the College in tripling its percentage of incoming low-income students and doubling its percentage of domestic students of color. He was named a White House Champion of Change in 2016, holds bachelor’s degrees from Georgetown and Oxford, and earned his Ph.D. at The City University of New York Graduate Center where he wrote his dissertation on the poetry of American prisoners.

Emilio Estefan
Award-winning Music, Television and Film Producer

Emilio Estefan is a world-renowned music, television and film producer who has been instrumental in shaping, developing and directing the careers of his superstar wife, Gloria, as well as Shakira, Ricky Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony and Jon Secada among many others. Emilio has achieved incredible success throughout his career, boasting more than 40 years of industry-leading achievements, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and induction into the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame just to name a few. With a resume that includes 19 Grammy Awards, Emilio has experimented and pushed the envelope of blending Latin, pop and world rhythms creating a unique style and personality that has created chart-topping worldwide hits. It is this vision that transcends the music field and spills over into film, television, hotels and restaurants, among other business endeavors, including serving as the Executive Producer of the Tony-Award nominated smash Broadway musical, On Your Feet! Most recently, the Library of Congress honored Emilio and Gloria with the distinguished Gershwin Prize for Popular song.

Nely Galán
CEO of Galán Entertainment and Founder of the Adelante Movement

Nely Galán is a self-made media entrepreneur. She was the first Latina President of Entertainment for a U.S. television network- Telemundo, an Emmy Award winning producer of over 700 television shows in English and Spanish, including the hit reality series, “The SWAN” for 20th Century Fox, which she produced through her multi-media company Galan Entertainment. Her company also launched over 10 television channels abroad for companies like HBO, ESPN, FOX, MGM and Sony.

Galan took a mid-career sabbatical, completing a masters and doctorate Clinical Psychology, where she focused on the Psychology of Money, in multicultural communities. She is the founder of The Adelante Movement non-profit, to empower and train Latina and other multicultural women both economically as well as entrepreneurially. Her New York Times bestselling book SELF MADE, Becoming Empowered, Self-Reliant, and Rich in Every Way 2016) (published in English, Spanish and Mandarin) about the revolution in women’s entrepreneurship led by multicultural women in the U.S. and emerging women around the world. Galán is a sought after speaker – appearing in over 500 cities in the last 5 years. Her next book, to be published in 2021, Don’t Buy Shoes Buy Buildings! – Creating Wealth for the Rest of Us will inform those who currently work for others how to invest in order to “ make money while we sleep” and become Self Made. Galan is devoted to creating financial literacy and wealth building in communities of color.

Laysha Ward
Executive Vice President and Chief External Engagement Officer for Target

Laysha Ward is executive vice president and chief external engagement officer for Target and a member of the company’s senior leadership team. She leads Target’s enterprise wide approach to actively engage and deepen relationships with external stakeholders to drive positive business and community impact.

Ms. Ward is a member of the Executive Leadership Council; Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority; The Links, an international woman’s service organization; the International Women’s Forum; the Advisory Board for the Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program; and the Stanford Center for Longevity. She also sits on the for-profit board of directors for Denny’s Corporation.

Ms. Ward received her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Indiana University and a master’s degree in social services administration with an emphasis in management and public policy from the University of Chicago.

Xavier A. Gutierrez
President, CEO and Alternative Governor, Arizona Coyotes

Xavier Gutierrez is the first Latino President and CEO in the National Hockey League, leading the Arizona Coyotes Hockey Club. In this role, Gutierrez oversees all business operations, strategic planning, significant organizational decision-making, and government relations for the club. Previously, he served as Managing Director at Clearlake Capital Group, a leading private investment firm that oversees $25 billion of institutional capital. Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, he and his family relocated to San Jose, California when he was a toddler. The quintessential American success story, Gutierrez graduated from Harvard College and Stanford Law School, and for two decades built a sterling reputation in business, investment, and finance. A dedicated philanthropist and corporate leader, he serves on multiple boards and advisory councils including the Board of Directors of Commercial Bank of California, the largest Latino-owned bank in California, the Board of Directors and Investment Committee of the Arizona Community Foundation (ACF), a public charitable organization founded in 1978 that stewards nearly $1.0 billion in assets for the greater Arizona community, and the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, the national organization focused on providing financial support for US Latinos to pursue higher education.

Lucy Pérez
Senior Partner, McKinsey & Company

A former cancer researcher, Lucy brings a strong technical background to her work with organizations across the life-sciences sector. Since joining McKinsey, she has partnered with CEOs and top teams at leading organizations across North America, Europe, and Asia. She leads our evidence generation work within the Life Sciences Practice, helping clients generate and apply research insights, clinical data, and real-world evidence to maximize patient benefit, demonstrate product value, and catalyze innovation.

n addition to her client service, Lucy co-leads our North America Hispanic Latino Network, a platform for consultants and Hispanic and Latino leaders to connect and build community as well as advance their professional development.

Before joining McKinsey, Lucy was a research fellow at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, where she was involved in the development of novel treatments for solid tumors. She was also a Howard Hughes Medical Institute research fellow at Harvard University while completing her doctoral studies. She is co-inventor on multiple patents and has published in peer-reviewed journals.

Bernardo Sichel
Partner, McKinsey & Company

Bernardo Sichel is a partner at McKinsey & Company and a leader in their North American Hispanic Latino Network. Additionally, he co-leads Consumer Leap in North America, McKinsey’s business building practice. Bernardo does all of his work at the intersection of Consumer, Technology, and Business Building, serving established and start-up clients achieve significant growth acceleration through the use of technology, digital, and new business models.

Bernardo was born and raised in Venezuela where he earned his Economics degree from Universidad Católica Andrés Bello and started his career with Procter & Gamble before attending Harvard Business School for his MBA. He has spent 20+ years serving clients across the US and Latin America, leveraging his international experience and embracing his Latino heritage. His kids are First Generation Americans.


Javier Saade

Javier Saade has three decades of experience as an investor, board member, founder, operating executive and policymaker.

Currently he is Venture Partner at Fenway Summer, Managing Partner of Impact Master Holdings, Lead Independent Director of the Board of Porch Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: PRCH), Audit Committee Chair of the Board of Softbank’s SVF Investment Corp. (NASDAQ: SVFA) and Chairman of the Board of Directors of GP Funding, Inc., a Presidio and Rothschild owned financial services company.

In September 2021, President Biden nominated Javier to be Chairman of the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board subject to Senate confirmation. The board oversees over $750 billion in assets for 6.3 million beneficiaries.

Until recently, Javier held seats on the Board of Trustees of The Nature Conservancy, the Board of Trustees of Pan American Development Foundation, the Global Advisory Board of Docusign, Inc. (NASDAQ: DOCU) and the Corporate Responsibility Board of Univision.

Previously, Javier was appointed by the White House to serve as Associate Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and was its Chief of Investment and Innovation. The programs Javier led have invested over $120 billion in 300,000 American companies since inception. He also held a seat on the Committee for Small and Emerging Companies at the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC).

Before public service, he spent 20 years in operating, investing, advisory and leadership roles at McKinsey & Company, Booz Allen (NYSE:BAH), Bridgewater Associates, Abbott Labs (NYSE:ABT) and Air America, a media company he co-founded. In his transition back to private life he was Executive in Residence at Columbia Technology Ventures, Senior Fellow at Georgetown’s Beeck Center for Social Impact and Mentor at Stanford’s Latino Leadership Initiative. He also serves on the Board of Advisors of Harvard’s Rock Center for Entrepreneurship.

Over his career Javier has been a director of several PE/VC backed companies, served as Mentor at Kauffman Foundation and Techstars. He was also a member of the Biden Transition Team focused on Treasury and the economy. He frequently writes and speaks about the economy, digital finance, venture capital, sustainability, diversity, civic leadership, financial services, policymaking, impact investing, entrepreneurship, and capital stewardship.

Javier holds an MBA from Harvard Business School, MS in Operations & Technology from Illinois Institute of Technology and BS in Industrial Management from Purdue University.

Topics to be covered

A Look at Latino Economic Mobility to Drive a More Inclusive Economy 

Latino Wealth Creation: The Smart Investment 

Unleashing American Latinos’ Potential Through Innovative Policy 

Debunking Myths: Creating a New American Narrative 

Architects of Change and Action