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NFL, Hispanic Heritage Foundation and Courtyard By Marriott Partner for Third Annual NFL Hispanic Heritage Leadership Awards

Presented by Courtyard by Marriott, 32 Hispanic Leaders Recognized During Hispanic Heritage Month in Every NFL Market

CY - NFL Futbol Americano 2013

The NFL, Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) and Courtyard by Marriott have partnered for the third annual NFL Hispanic Heritage Leadership Awards Presented by Courtyard by Marriott during the 2013 celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month.  The awards recognize the contributions of Hispanic leaders in each NFL market.

Each award recipient will be recognized in-stadium at a Hispanic Heritage game in their local market. 

With support from Courtyard by Marriott, each award recipient will select an organization of their choice that serves the local Hispanic community to receive a $2,000 donation.  Marriott International has a longstanding history of diversity and inclusion.  As part of its commitment, Marriott has a strategic partnership with the National Council of La Raza and was recently recognized by LatinaStyle for being a top company for Latinas.

“We are excited to partner with the Hispanic Heritage Foundation and Courtyard by Marriott to recognize individuals across all 32 team markets that make a difference in their local Hispanic community,” said Peter O’Reilly, NFL Vice President of Fan Strategy and Marketing.  “We applaud all the recipients for their hard work and the impact they make on the lives of others.” 

“We are thrilled to partner with the NFL and Courtyard by Marriott to honor Hispanic leaders who are making an impact on communities all over America,” said Jose Antonio Tijerino, President and CEO of HHF.  “It is important to highlight their leadership not only in the traditional Latino regions but in recently-growing areas as well.  The NFL and Courtyard by Marriott made sure that beyond the recognition there was an investment in the community their donations to nonprofits. There is no better way to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month than to make a difference in the Latino community.”

"Courtyard by Marriott is proud to partner with the NFL to honor these local heroes," said Janis Milham, Marriott International's Senior Vice President - Modern Essentials and Extended Stay Brands. "Congratulations to the honorees on their efforts to make our communities better and more inclusive."

The Washington Redskins Hispanic Heritage Leadership award recipient, Gabriel Albornoz, was selected to be recognized onstage by NFL Hall of Famer Anthony Muñoz during HHF’s star-studded 26th Hispanic Heritage Awards at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.  The awards will be aired on Mundo Fox this Sunday, September 15.  The prestigious Hispanic Heritage Awards were created by the White House to honor notable Latinos who have distinguished themselves in various fields and made an impact on America and beyond. The Awards are considered among the highest honors by Hispanics for Hispanics in America and serve to kick off HHF’s award-winning youth leadership and workforce development programs. 

The NFL will celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month during Week 3 of the 2013 season. A national spotlight will be shined on the NFL’s celebration during Thursday Night Football, Sunday Night Football and Monday Night Football. The Kansas City Chiefs face the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday, September 19, the Chicago Bears take on the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, September 22 and the Oakland Raiders visit the Denver Broncos on Monday night, September 23. 
The 2013 NFL Hispanic Heritage Leadership Awards recipients are:



Arizona Cardinals

Gary L. Trujillo: Founder and Chairman of Be a Leader Foundation

Atlanta Falcons

Tisha Tallman: President and CEO of the Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Baltimore Ravens

Dr. Elizabeth Morgan: President of the Morgan Education Group

Buffalo Bills

Lucy Candelario: Executive Director of the Belle Center

Carolina Panthers

Astrid Chirinos: President of Latin American Chamber of Commerce of Charlotte

Chicago Bears

Carmen Velásquez: Founder and Executive Director of the Alivio Medical Center

Cincinnati Bengals

Dr. Liliana Rojas-Guyler: Associate Professor of Health Promotion and Education of the University of Cincinnati

Cleveland Browns

Victor Ruiz: Executive Director of Esperanza, Inc.

Dallas Cowboys

Carlos A. Branger: Founder & CEO of Zaguán

Denver Broncos

Jim Garcia: Executive Director and Founder of the Clínica Tepeyac

Detroit Lions

Mary A. Luevanos: President of the Community for Latino Artists, Visionaries and Educators

Green Bay Packers

José Olivieri: Partner at Michael Best & Friedrich LLP

Houston Texans

Rick Noriega: President and CEO of AVANCE

Indianapolis Colts

Juan Gonzalez: Business Banking Sales Leader – Senior Vice President in the State of Indiana for KeyBank

Jacksonville Jaguars

Paul Martinez: President and CEO of the Martinez Advertising Group

Kansas City Chiefs

Juan Sepúlveda: Senior Advisor for Hispanic Affairs for the Democratic National Committee

Miami Dolphins

Michelle Bernstein: Founding Member of the Common Threads Miami Advisory Council

Minnesota Vikings

Ruby Azurdia-Lee: President of Comunidades Latinas Unidas en Servicio

New England Patriots

Gladys Vega: Executive Director of Chelsea Collaborative

New Orleans Saints

David Gallegos: Program Director of the New Orleans Advocacy Center

New York Giants

Fernando Ferrer: Co-Chairman of Mercury and Vice-Chairman of Metropolitan Transportation Authority

New York Jets

Martin Perez: Founder and President of the Latino Leadership Alliance of New Jersey

Oakland Raiders

Alejandro Velez: Co-Founder of Back to the Roots and Founder of the Sage Mentorship Program

Philadelphia Eagles

Jennifer Rodríguez: Executive Director of Mayor Michael Nutter’s Office of Immigrant and Multicultural Affairs

Pittsburgh Steelers

Lourdes Sanchez Ridge: Attorney at Clark Hill Thorp Reed

St. Louis Rams

Guillermo Rodríguez: Director of International Projects and Office of Study Abroad of Webster University

San Diego Chargers

Lidia S. Martinez: Manager of Community Affairs & Grassroots of Southwest Airlines

San Francisco 49ers

Lennies Gutierrez: Advisory Council Member of Bay Area Women’s Sports Initiative

Seattle Seahawks

Luis Navarro: Community Liaison of One League for Everyone

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jolie Gonzalez-Padilla: President and CEO of Latin Times Media, Inc.

Tennessee Titans

Yuri Cunza: President and CEO of Nashville Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Washington Redskins

Gabriel Albornoz: Director of Montgomery County, Maryland Recreation Department

About Courtyard by Marriott:
Courtyard by Marriott offers a refreshing environment that helps guests stay connected, productive and balanced. Intuitive services and design accommodate guests’ needs for choice and control. With more than 900 locations in 38 countries and territories, Courtyard hotels participate in the award-winning Marriott Rewards® frequent travel program that allows members to earn hotel points or airline miles for every dollar spent during each stay. For more information or reservations, call the Courtyard toll-free number at 800-321-2211, visit, become a fan at  or follow Courtyard at

About the Hispanic Heritage Foundation:
Since 1987, the Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) has inspired, identified, prepared and positioned Latino leaders in the classroom, community and the workforce to meet America’s priorities.  HHF believes their young leaders are leaders of today not tomorrow and should make an impact on thousands of others. Please visit for more information.

Darlene Capiro, NFL: 212/450-2175,  
Santiago Amieva, HHF: 202/861-9797,
Felicia Farrar McLemore, Marriott International: 301/380-2702,