LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., Dec. 18, 2012— The 15th Annual Don Quijote Awards Gala, hosted by Walt Disney World at Epcot World Showplace Pavilion, welcomed more than 1,000 guests as the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando and the Hispanic Business Initiative Fund of Florida (HBIF) honored individuals who demonstrate extraordinary abilities in their field of work.
Disney executives presented two awards–the Luminary award and the Lifetime Achievement award. In what became a surprise to all attendees and the highlight of the evening, George Aguel, Senior VP Corporate Alliances and Operating Participants for Walt Disney World Resort, presented the first-time-ever Luminary award to Grammy Award winner Juan Luis Guerra. He was recognized for his outstanding career as a singer, songwriter and philanthropist around the world. Meanwhile, local community leader, Lizette Valarino, received the Liftetime Achievement award from Eugene Campbell, Vice President of Domestic Minority Business Development for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.
“In its 15-year history, we’ve seen this event grow into one that not only unites our community, but also recognizes outstanding talent, perseverance, vision and achievement in a way that inspires us individually and collectively,” said Campbell, a past Don Quijote award winner.
Other businesses and individuals receiving Quijote awards were:
- CCH Marketing and Events, Inc. – Hispanic Business of the Year, 5 Years or Less
- Conpilog – Hispanic Business of the Year, more Than 5 Years
- Lourdes Quintana, Director, Central Florida Early Steps and Manager for the Developmental Center for Infants and Children, Orlando Health — Professional of the Year
- Melissa Martinez Hernandez, Director of Constituent Services for the Office of U.S. Senator Marco Rubio – Excellence Award
- Tony Jenkins, Market President, Central and Northwest Florida for Florida Blue – Hispanic Community Champion
For more information on the Don Quijote Awards, please visit www.donquijoteawards.com.