Fourth Annual Latin American Cultural Extravaganza at HWS – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Fourth Annual Latin American Cultural Extravaganza at HWS

Hobart and William Smith Colleges' Latin American Extravaganza will celebrate unification of community, and welcome a New York State senator and a leading Latina journalist.

February 28, 2002 GENEVA, N.Y.—Extravaganza is a cultural celebration of unification between the Latin American community and community members with other ethnic backgrounds. The campus wide Latin American cultural “Extravaganza” will be held at 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 2, in Winn-Seeley. On the Hobart and William Smith Colleges campus. Tickets are $8 for HWS students, and $10 general admission. The Extravaganza will feature a talk by Latina journalist Sandra Guzmán, presentations made by students, and refreshments. New York State Senator Olga Méndez, of New York City, will attend and recognize LAO for its fourth Extravaganza and its efforts to increase awareness of Latino concerns.

Members of LAO work to increase unification between Latin Americans and members of other racial and ethnic backgrounds. Extravaganza is part of this process of enlarging the community.

Guzmán will speak about the importance of recreating images and how gaps between the racial/ethnic groups can be spanned. Guzmán is an EMMY Award-winning journalist with more than 10 years experience in broadcast, newspaper, magazine, and Internet journalism. She is the former editor-in-chief of “Latina Magazine,” the first national, glossy bilingual lifestyle magazine targeting the Hispanic American woman.

Guzmán is the author of the forthcoming self-help book for Latinas titled The Latina's Bible: A Nueva Latina's Guide to Love, Sex, Spirituality and la Vida. She received a bachelor's degree from Rutgers University and was among seven Rutgers University alumni honored for outstanding leadership and contribution to the arts. She is a board member of the Smithsonian Institution's National Board on Latino Initiatives.

Senator Mendez is the first Puerto Rican woman elected to a State Legislature in the United States mainland. She is also the first Puerto Rican public elected official who, regardless of gender, has served the longest on a state legislature in the United States. Mendez represents the 28th Senate District, encompassing parts of the South and West Bronx, East Harlem, Roosevelt Island parts of North Yorkville and Upper Washington Heights. Senator Mendez was first elected to the Senate in 1978, winning a special election with 89 percent of the vote. She has been reelected for 11 consecutive terms with consistently increasing margins.

Born in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, Mendez received her bachelor's degree from the University of Puerto Rico, her master's degree from the Teacher's College at Columbia University, and her doctoral degree Yeshiva University. Prior to her election to the Senate, Mendez devoted her time and energy to volunteer work with organizations that promoted good government and fair and sound public policy. Méndez is well known for her active leadership in voter registration drives.