[Podcast 3] Latin Business Today Sits Down with Helen Hernandez

Carlos Garcia interviews Helen Hernandez Interview – Part three.



Editor's note Carlos Garcia interviewed Helen Hernandez for podcast part three of this three part podcast series. Find podcast 3 below.

What I find most impressive about Helen Hernandez is how much she is the same person if she is talking to a filing clerk, a famous actor, the head of a studio or a Cabinet member.  In my mind she cannot be intimidated, but she humbly begs to differ.  

Still, she talks about Norman Lear (the famous producer/creator of shows such as All In The Family), former Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, Congressman Luis Gutierrez (of Chicago) and others.  

Knowing Helen well and all she does, it is just as remarkable who she doesn’t mention – she is not a name dropper, and she doesn’t mention the famous people she interacts with such as Lin-Manuel Miranda (who received an Imagen Award for his work last year), Dolores Huerta (the Latino Civil Rights stalwart who worked alongside Cesar Chavez), the great opera star Placido Dominguez and lots of actors like America Ferrera, Jimmy Smits, Esai Morales and Rita Moreno.  

So there’s a lot more going on with Helen than she will boast about.

She goes into much of the work she did across the years with the Hispanic Congressional Caucus, specifically to honor ordinary Latinas doing extraordinary things across the country in districts led by Latino congresspersons.  

Even though Helen is of Mexican origin, she also expresses support for groups such as Boricua Activate – an organization dedicated to encouraging Puerto Ricans living in the US to become politically engaged and thus actively support the island and its needs which is currently a big issue following Hurricane Maria.   

This is a good example of Intra-Hispanic support – if we see other Latinos as allies instead of competitors, we can collectively accomplish much more than we could alone.

Helen concludes this interview with musings on ambitions vs. expectations, on seizing opportunities, and on banning two words from her office – failure and assume.  A failure is actually a learning opportunity. Period.  Don't you assume things.

Her final words to Latino entrepreneurs – Don’t be afraid.

For access to the first two parts of this interview, you can find them here:

Part 1: Latin Business Today Sits Down with Helen Hernandez- Podcast 1  

Part 2: [Podcast] Latin Business Today Sits Down with Helen Hernandez-2

Find podcast 3 below.

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About the author

Carlos E. Garcia

Carlos E. Garcia, a Latin Business Today, Partner: Research, Trends, Insights was born to Mexican immigrant parents, grew up in East Los Angeles and attended Pomona College, UC Berkeley and National University (BA, MA and MBA respectively).  He has over thirty years of experience in the field of US Hispanic consumer research, twenty one years at the helm of his own company, Garcia Research.  Most recently  SVP at GfK: Knowledge Networks, where he headed up their Hispanic research efforts. He's gone full circle and now back at the helm of Garcia Research, a Hispanic market and Multicultural-focused research firm.