Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program Announces New Cohort of Ricardo Salinas Scholars

July 30, 2018

Twenty-two Ricardo Salinas Scholars awarded to participate in Aspen Institute programs bringing valuable perspectives to solve problems facing our global communities 

Contact: Maria Samaniego
Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program
202-736-2299 |

Washington, DC, July 30, 2018– The Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program announces scholarship awards to a new cohort of Ricardo Salinas Scholars- a program created to give Latinos a seat at the table and enrich conversations impacting policy and practice across the country and around the world. The 22 recipients will participate in ten different policy, seminars and public programs.

At a time of deep divisions across ethnicity and ideology, it is more important than ever to convene across difference and work toward building a shared future. Thanks to the generous support of Ricardo Salinas and Grupo Salinas, the Aspen Institute has awarded more than 200 Ricardo Salinas Scholarships since its inception in 2015.

This cohort of scholars hail from 11 cities from across the US and Mexico. They are emerging leaders as well as seasoned professionals from across sectors. Their diversity and national and international perspectives add value to discussions about the issues and challenges of our times.

The Aspen Institute fosters leadership based on enduring values and provides a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The participants are able to engage with world-renowned thought leaders, content, and cross-sector networks of influencers and decision makers to expand their leadership skills and networks.

Karlo Rodriguez, CTO of Klustera and Ricardo Salinas Scholar awardee to participate in the Aspen Ideas Festival shared “Being a part of the Aspen Ideas Festival was a great experience, because more than ideas, people were eager to meet new people, share ideas and create meaningful connections. As a Latino entrepreneur, having this opportunity is really valuable because it helps me better understand the world, our role in the society and how we can continue giving back to our community in a smarter and more focused way.”

“I am proud to contribute to the efforts of the Aspen Institute to include an increasing number of Latinos in its valuable programs,” said Ricardo Salinas, Chairman of Grupo Salinas. “Scholarship recipients will be able to exchange ideas and broaden their knowledge in critical issues that are key for the future of their communities.”

“We are grateful for the visionary support of Ricardo Salinas/ Grupo Salinas in championing the meaningful participation of Latino Americans and Mexican citizens across a wide array of Aspen Institute programs, building relationships, expanding networks, and increasing awareness of how Latinos are contributing to a changing nation. In its first three years, the Ricardo Salinas Scholars have greatly contributed to the programs they have participated in offering important perspectives that otherwise wouldn’t have been there,” said Abigail Golden-Vazquez, Aspen Institute Vice President and Latinos and Society Program Executive Director.

The Ricardo Salinas Scholarship awardees are:

Carmen Palafox, Make in LA

Gerardo Reyes Chavez, Coalition of Immokalee Workers

Lorea Canales, Freelance writer

Nathalie Molina Nino, Brava Investments

Karina Ayala-Bermejo, Instituto del Progreso Latino

Cristian Farias, NAACP Legal Defense Fund

Celeste Cantu, Water Education for Latino Leaders

Simone Leiro, All in Together

Bernadette Hobson, PepsiCo

Daniela Moctezuma, Value for Women

Rafael Alonso Arenas, New Ventures

Marcos Lavandera, ProMujer, Inc.

Cecilia Latapi, SVX Mexico

Karlos Rodriguez, Klustera

Luis Raya Campo, USAID Mexico

Sergio Stephen, Architect and Designer

Carla Sofia Elizundia, Design Week Mexico

Arturo Oropeza, Stanford University

Herbert Zea, William Blair

Victoria Suarez-Palomo, Renovate America

The Ricardo Salinas Scholarship aims to increase the participation of Latinos in the Aspen Institute’s public events, policy roundtables, leadership seminars and other convenings. In doing so, it provides access to leadership opportunities, networks and social capital.

How to apply

Candidates should identify a program of interest from the offerings on the Aspen Institute website, reach out to the appropriate point of contact, and mention their potential eligibility for the Ricardo Salinas Scholarship. If the candidate is a good fit, then the program applies for the scholarship on the candidate’s behalf. The scholarship is managed by the Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program, and a committee makes the final selection based on established criteria. Nominations are accepted on a rolling basis, and the committee meets to review and select scholars three times a year.

For more details on scholarship eligibility and nomination process, please visit

The Aspen Institute founded the Latinos and Society Program in 2015 to provide a place for Latinos and non-Latinos to learn about their shared future and jointly explore solutions to the challenges of our times.  Its vision is to foster a more informed citizenry and promote the engagement of all people in securing a prosperous and inclusive future for America. This policy program convenes diverse audiences and subject matter experts to advance three important policy areas, civic participations, economic advancement and educational opportunity.  The program is also connecting a pipeline of Latino leaders to Institute programs, fostering collaboration, and strengthening their networks. To learn more, follow @AspenLatinos, or visit

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute is based in Washington, DC; Aspen, Colorado; and on the Wye River on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. It also has offices in New York City and an international network of partners. For more information, visit


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