National Hispanic Hero Award
Rosa Rosales has dedicated more than 30 years of her career to empowering the Latino community. She co-founded the United Public Employee Association and worked as a Field Supervisor in the Neighborhood Anti-Crime Program and as a Field Supervisor and later as Regional Director of the National Association of Government Employees. Rosa served as Office Director of the Service Employees International Union and then founded and is the Director of the National Association of Public Employees, a San Antonio-based union. She held several positions of leadership as a member of LULAC before being elected National President. Rosa earned a B.A. degree in liberal arts from the University of Michigan.
Cesar E. Chavez Community Service Award
During his early years as a farm worker Alex began to see how Latinos were being mistreated and, when he had the opportunity, he made the decision to work on behalf of Latinos. A media professional, he has fought for the civil rights and the inclusion of Latinos in radio, film, and television. He has led boycotts against advertisers and petitioned the Federal Communications Commission to deny broadcast licenses to anyone who would use the airwaves to spread hate against Latinos or demonize immigrants. Among many other causes Alex has led the fight against hate speech and has opened the doors for Latino professionals in all areas of media and entertainment.
Henry L. (Hank) Lacayo Lifetime Achievement Award
Moctesuma Esparza is an award-winning producer, entertainment executive, and entrepreneur. A highly regarded professional, he has worked with stars such as Robert Redford, Jennifer Lopez, Andy Garcia, Jimmy Smits, Martin Sheen, Robert Duvall and Halle Berry. His films include Price of Glory, Selena, The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez, and The Milagro Beanfield War among others. A lifelong community activist, he has dedicated his career to creating more opportunities for emerging Latinos and transforming the images of Latinos in Hollywood. Among his many honors are an Academy Award nomination, a Golden Globe nomination, an Emmy Award, a Clio Award, and a Cine Golden Eagle Award.
William C. (Willie) Velasquez Volunteer of the Year Award
Mike Pizana is deeply committed to volunteer service and has held leadership positions in the LULAC Council in Whiting, IN, LULAC Council 313 in South Chicago (IL), the Board of the Lake County, Indiana Child Abuse Prevention Council, and the East Chicago (IN) Civic Little League. Mike is a graduate of Calumet College of St. Joseph in Whiting, IN. After working for Congressman Pete Visclosky, he accepted his present position as Campus Safety Operations Supervisor at Roosevelt University. Mike has volunteered with USHLI for the last 10 years, so he is being honored as our Volunteer of the Year, not just for one year of service but for 10.