Born from a vision of entrepreneurship and community fellowship, the Hispanic American Business Association of the Gulf Coast became a reality in the month of February of 2009.
The heart and soul of the association, María Méndez is a native Cuban and successful professional as Director of Latin American Sales & Trade Development for the Alabama State Port Authority in Mobile. Her passion for bringing people together has made her well known among both Hispanics and Americans, using her beautiful home in Daphne as a gathering center where she has hosted numerous parties.
In the spring of 2006, at one of her social functions, that of course involved delicious Cuban food, Maria expressed her vision to her friends Ruben and Patricia Rosales (Mexico) and Alberto and Isabel Montes-de-Oca (Bolivia) and discussed the possibility of organizing an association that would bring Hispanics and Americans together. On the spring of 2008, María hosted a typical Caribbean pork barbecue feast in honor of Senator Trip Pittman and other dignitaries; since then, the excitement over the idea grew.
With the unfailing support of Leida Javier-Ferrell (Puerto Rico), Liaison for the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, Maria and Leida organized the first meeting on February of 2009 at the new downtown office of Hargrove and Associates where various community leaders interested in Hispanic affairs were invited to discuss the possibilities and advantages of creating the Association.
Ralph Hargrove, President of Hargrove & Associates expressed his support to the organization. Support has also been secured from the Alabama Port Authority and the Mobile Chamber of Commerce. Enthusiasm about the project, volunteers agreed to serve on a steering committee. In a matter of weeks the association has become a reality, with a name, a website, a mission statement, and stated goals and objectives. Born from a vision the HABAGC is destined for success!
Meet Our Board of Directors
Ed. Seoane President
Leida Javier-Ferrel Vice President
Silvia Akuz Treasurer
Andrea I. Nemesszeghy Secretary
Silvia L. Skultety Director of Activities
Jesus Martinez Director of Membership
Alberto Montes de Oca Director of Scholarship Committee
Cindy Wnek Website/Social Media Coordinator