Aspen Institute to Launch Latinos and Society Program

April 9, 2015

Contact: Sarah Alvarez
Program Associate, Latinos & Society Program
The Aspen Institute

Goal is to Elevate Issues of Importance to Latinos and the Nation

Washington, DC, April 9, 2015– The Aspen Institute today announced the launch of its Latinos and Society Program, a new initiative dedicated to increasing the awareness of the growing Latino community and its important contribution to all aspects of American society.

As the second largest population in the US, projected to comprise one in four Americans by 2050, Latinos have an increasingly prominent and influential role in society. The Latinos and Society Program was founded to bring together influencers and decision-makers from Latino and non-Latino communities to find areas of common ground that can advance issues and policies of importance to Latinos and the country as a whole.

“Given the increasingly significant role Latinos play in American society, it was clear that the Aspen Institute should be focusing attention on issues important to this community, as well as infusing our own work with Latino voices and ideas,” said Institute President and CEO Walter Isaacson. “We are thrilled to have the accomplished business leader Monica Lozano chairing this program, and thank global entrepreneur and philanthropist Ricardo Salinas for providing funding to make the program possible.”

“I applaud the Aspen Institute for committing itself to advancing Hispanic issues as America’s issues,” commented Monica Lozano, Chair, Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program. “The reach and reputation of the Aspen Institute uniquely positions it to build bridges of understanding across communities and I am proud to join the Institute in this endeavor.”

In creating a nonpartisan platform for public programming, policy convenings, and leadership development, the Latinos and Society Program aims to:

  • Influence the way decision-makers and others understand the Hispanic community and their role in the future of American society;
  • Promote policies that reflect the growing importance of this population; and
  • Develop leaders and expand networks that contribute to achieving these goals.

The program will place a particular emphasis on educational achievement, economic advancement and civic participation, and launch a Latino Leadership Initiative to develop the next generation of entrepreneurial civic-minded Latino leaders.

The Aspen Institute will officially launch the Latinos and Society Program at a special reception in Washington, DC, on Thursday, April 9.

The Latinos and Society program was made possible thanks to a founding gift from the Ricardo Salinas Foundation, which also established the Ricardo Salinas Scholarship Fund to underwrite Latino participation in a variety of Aspen Institute seminars, programs, and events.

“It’s an honor to join the Aspen Institute as it embarks on this essential effort to raise awareness of Latinos’ increasingly prominent role in American society,” said Ricardo Salinas, president and founder of the Mexico-based Grupo Salinas and trustee of the Aspen Institute. “Robust dialogue and engagement can generate ideas and action that will ultimately lead to greater opportunity for Latino Americans.”

The Woody and Gayle Hunt Family Foundation provided additional founding support for the Latinos and Society Program, and the Program has also received major commitments from Target, Comcast NBCUniversal, and Toyota.


The Latinos and Society Program is a policy program of the Aspen Institute committed to increasing the understanding of, and improving outcomes for, the growing US Latino population and therefore, the United States. The Latinos and Society program will convene meaningful dialogues among cross-sections of society with the goal of influencing more informed decision making, contribute to public awareness of Latino issues as America’s issues, infuse the work of the Aspen Institute with Latino voices, faces and ideas, and develop Latino leadership capacity. 

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