Maria Echaveste, former deputy chief of staff at the White House, joins HWS Latin celebration
GENEVA, N.Y.—The Latin American Organization (LAO) at Hobart and William Smith Colleges extends an invitation to the community to attend their annual Cultural Extravaganza that will be held beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 24, in the Bristol gym on the Colleges' campus. This year, Maria Echaveste, former deputy chief of staff at the White House, has agreed to attend the celebration as the keynote speaker.
Echaveste graduated from Stanford University in 1976 and went on to the University of California at Berkeley, where she earned her law degree in 1980. Echaveste is the daughter of migrant farm workers from Mexico and the eldest of seven siblings. When she was a child, her family moved across the country, and her parents made a living picking strawberries and other crops.
Echaveste left private-practice law to serve as Latino coordinator for President Bill Clinton's first presidential campaign. She later took a job at the Labor Department as administrator of its Wage and Hour Division. She moved into the White House in 1997 as the Public Liaison director and was promoted to deputy chief of staff in summer 1998. She is currently a consultant with Time Warner Communications for their Hispanic constituents.
The Cultural Extravaganza will be held from 5:30 until 9 p.m. on Saturday, March 24. The evening will also feature a dance performance by New York City's Santa Luz Dance Company, a live salsa band Tumbao of Rochester, student presentations of poetry and dance, and an award ceremony to pay tribute to Hispanic alumni/ae, students, professors, and community leaders. Dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m. and Ms. Echaveste is expected to begin her talk titled “Opening Doors” at 7 p.m. The event is limited to 300 people and tickets are $7 for HWS students and $10 for all others. They are available on a first-come basis at The College Store on St. Clair Street or at the Office of Student Life and Leadership in Scandling Center on Pulteney Street.
Founded in 1984, LAO is a group of diverse Hobart and William Smith students who strive to diversify campus and to raise awareness of Latino issues. LAO has created numerous events to highlight the achievements of the Latino community and to celebrate Latino culture through music, food, and showcasing their heroes.
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