Andre Arbeláez addresses the importance of the Latinx voice in corporate America
As founder, president and CEO of the Hispanic C-Suite Corporate Council (HC3), Arbeláez believes the Latinx community must celebrate and support each other for long-term success.
On Monday, September 23, 2019, AL DÍA was honored to host a leaders network quarterly forum and reception event sponsored by Bank of America and in collaboration with ALPFA, SHPE, SILAMP and NAHN, to gather Latinx leaders and professionals from across the spectrum of corporate America, government, and private and public institutions to network and learn from one another.
About 30 individuals from diverse professional backgrounds attended the event at the Pyramid Club and were treated to a talk and question-and-answer session with Andre Arbeláez, the President and CEO of the Hispanic C-Suite Corporate Council (HC3) — a member organization of Hispanic business leaders of corporate America that promotes more Latinx representation in the C-suite.
The Latinx population in the United States is growing rapidly, and for that reason, it is the perfect time to celebrate, advance, and help that community.
Arbeláez said he was fortunate to grow up in a Colombian household in Detroit, MI, that had a “strong sense of individual responsibility, a strong sense of family, and a strong sense of Hispanic culture.”
Those values have aided Arbeláez in the work he had done throughout his career, helping advance and promote the Latinx community. However, the community also has an important responsibility among themselves.
“Make sure you get involved,” said Arbeláez, as a piece of advice. “Never sit back and watch others, raise your hand, volunteer, be engaged.”
Currently, Latinos are not in many key executive positions across corporate America, despite comprising nearly 59 million people of the U.S. population.
When Arbeláez founded the member organization HC3 in 2018, he wanted to create an avenue for Hispanic and Latinx leaders to come together in corporate America in an “If I can see it, I can be it” mold that can inspire the next generation mold of Latinx executives.
“If we don’t help ourselves, who will?” he asked.
HC3’s mission is to increase the number of successful Hispanic executives by adding value to their development, leadership, and philanthropic endeavors, which will thereby strengthen their companies, organizations, and communities.
He added the Corporate America is starting to see that shift, as there are now 11 Latino CEOs leading Fortune 500 companies — including Cesar Conde at NBCUniversal International Group and NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises; Thaddeus Arroyo of AT&T; and Joe Dominguez of ComEd.
HC3 has established itself through a push up-pull up process that opens the door for Latinos and Hispanics to embrace and share their own and each other’s accomplishments, but also reaches a hand out to help others achieve their goals and aspirations.
“Times are changing,” said Arbeláez. “Latino leaders have to be at the table.”