The New Tales of Two Cities: Evanston and Skokie

Evanston and Skokie, their example is a New story of diversity, in doing so, defining a democracy-in-evolution competitive advantage for the U. S. The New Tales of Two Cities: Skokie and Evanston.

Presidential Candidates: Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

An interesting phenomenon happens on Cinco de Mayo, Latinos and non-Latinos, Mexicans and non-Mexican Hispanics celebrate.

As a Presidential Candidate you have good reasons to join the celebration by supporting comprehensive immigration reform, read Cinco de Mayo.

U. S. Youth – Triple Crown

Civil and Materials, Chemical, Bio, Electrical and Computer, and Mechanical-Industrial young engineers at the University of Illinois at Chicago are designing:  clothes to sense objects, waterways to combat Asian Carp fish invasions in filtering systems, lake waves to harvest energy, new processes to minimize shale production emissions,… to name a few of the 75 projects exhibits at UIC Expo26, Designing our World on April 21, 2015.

Over 200 engineering students are indeed designing our world.  In doing so, they are demonstrating that the U. S. is ready to maintain its competitive edge in a multi-powers world.

U. S. Youth – Triple Crown

Heart-felt Super Bowl XLIX

Heart-Felt Super Bowl XLIX

No controversy could had derailed Super Bowl XLIX. Why did not the atmosphere affect the other team’s balls? It was no time to ask.  Spoiler ad alerts on check and themed food ready, a record 112M+ watched the game on TV (128M during the last minutes), 1.3M Web-streamed and many posted 28M+ tweets. It was football time.

For me, it was culture observation time, through the eyes of football.

2015 Business Strategy Essentials

2015 Strategy Essentials is a powerful, short read for senior management, marketing, public relations, branding, creative and related business professionals.  Distilled through hundred of trends, I discuss a few mega trends with strategic impact for 2015.

Top Ten Reasons to Celebrate Hispanic Awareness Month

What does it mean to you Hispanic Awareness month?

1. If you have a son or daughter older than 18, he/she is 20% likely to marry a Latino/a.

2. If you move, your next door neighbor could be Latino/a.

3. If you sell Consumer products such as food, clothes, cars, baby products, housewares, Latinos are your lead users and main social media chatty advocates, over indexing In consumption by 15-50%.

4. If you need to take care of your loved ones:  elderly parents, children and yourself when you get sick.

5. If you are in politics and need voters as 2000+ U. S. born Latinos turn 18 years old every day of the year.

6. If you are Facebook, Twitter or YouTube, your business may not exist or would be much smaller.

7.  If you want your big or small city income to grow, even in Arizona.

8. If you would like to expand your business to take advantage of about one billion habitants in the Americas hemisphere.

9. If you do not like to grow, harvest and ship your food; wash your car, cut the grass, or serve, cook and clean your own dishes at a restaurant.

10. If you want to defend Your country, as many Latinos have done during decades.

Celebrate Hispanic heritage month, celebrate an intrinsic part of America history and future.

Oh, it passed. Prepare for next year.

“We must rewrite our story from one of fear to one of celebration.”  ― Kameron Hurley, Rapture
“We must rewrite our story from one of fear to one of celebration.”
― Kameron Hurley, Rapture

-Hispanic youth account for 20% of all 18-24 years old and are making big strides in college enrollment, accounting for 16.3% of all 4-year college enrollment. Pew Hispanic Research.
-As of 2005, the proportion of Hispanics in the $75,000 income household level increased to 18%, higher in New York, Miami and Chicago. Many dynamics explain this such as the polling of income among family members, younger age generation growing income opportunities and sheer growth rates as a percentage of the population. Source: Hispanics in the United States: A Demographic, Social, and Economic History
-Hispanic consumers act as accelerators in growing categories and brakes in declining ones, The Hispanic Imperative 2012, Nielsen.
-800,000 Hispanics turn 18 years old every year, Pew Hispanic Research.
-Hispanics increasingly account for a larger proportion of any city revenues and taxes. Arizona is one example, per Arizona Daily Star.
-Hispanic population accounts for 56% of the total population growth in the last ten years.

Discovering Economic Enchantment

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Photo Dec 21This week marked the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month. September 16 was Mexican Independence Day celebration. During this Hispanic Heritage Month I am thinking about Puerto Rico, a part of the U.S. often ignored unless in tourist ads.

Cristóbal Colón was in such awe when he set foot on Borinquén (Taíno Indians name) that he called it ‘La Isla del Encanto’, the Enchantment Island. The island-nation preserves its natural beauty in the middle of a bustling society. Sustained economic development, although superior than most of Latin America, lags its potential. I am referring to the potential to raise a stagnant economy and living conditions of Puerto Ricans as well as an investment that could complement the U.S. economy.

How? Here are some examples:

Ready talent: About 25% of the 3.5M Puerto Ricans living on the island are bilingual and many, through Pell Grant aid, are also college educated yet underemployed. This relatively young, educated and English-speaking population could become a catalyst in filling hundred of thousands open high-tech jobs both at the professional and trade levels.

Culture: Puerto Ricans have lived in a dual – American and Latin – society for over 100 years, already mastering multidimensional approaches to the challenges of an increasingly diverse society. They are also primed as easy bridges between Latin America and the U.S.

Puerto Rico is a good economic partner for the U.S. Stable politically, Puerto Ricans are proud of who they are, but also value the relationship with the U.S. Setting aside referendums for full statehood, during the last century over 95% of the population consistently voted for a relationship with the United States.

Facing economic challenges that are exponential in nature versus the mainland, Puerto Ricans demonstrated integrity in the way they have handled investors during the recent crisis. Some are taking note. Quoted The New York Times this week: “hedge funds, including Perry Capital, Fir Tree Partners and other members of the self-styled Ad Hoc Group of investors, have bought $4.5 billion of Puerto Rico government guaranteed and tax-supported bonds — or roughly 10 percent of the total — making them a financial and political force on the island.”

Armed forces: Already active in the Armed Forces since the 1920s, Puerto Ricans are passionate patriots. Building on multi-cultural and multi-lingual background, soldiers could become an asset in learning Arabic languages and connecting with diverse groups around the world.

Geography: Most of Puerto Rico has rich, moist soil. My mother used to throw seeds out of the window and the next week plants were growing. The land is ready for a sustainable, yet organized way to produce exotic fruits and vegetables, organic produce or to build biomes that would mimic world forests as laboratories for new medicine discoveries.

I would not want to see all pristine land disappear, but there are many undiscovered treasures in real state at prices that are frankly a bargain. Investors need to think beyond the tourist industry.

Deep ports:  The name Puerto Rico means rich port. The San Juan Bay is one of the deepest points in the Atlantic Ocean. Could these ports house ships from a new local assembly or manufacturing center? There are plenty tourists ships.

Investment through high interest debt is an opportunity but not enough. The ecosystem in support of the investment must also be addressed.

As a Puerto Rican I know that on the island, you think small. The investor side and the local governments often ignore the potential that a small and rich island can offer. It is time to change that.

Let’s do not ignore Puerto Rico’s beauty nor its economic potential enchantment.

Happy Hispanic Heritage Month!
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