ADRIANA BARRAZA-Adriana Barraza is an incredibly versatile and gifted film and television actress, director, and acting coach. She delivered her most acclaimed performance in the Academy Award-nominated role of “Amelia” in Babel. Adriana is also an ALMA Award winner, and has been nominated for Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild Awards. After getting her start in Televisa telenovelas, Adriana transitioned to the big screen, appearing in the Academy Award-winning film Amores Perros. She directed the television series Locura de Amor, in which she also starred, and has coached actors for television shows and movies, including Spanglish.
Candela Ferro-Candela Ferro is one of the few on-air talents in the Hispanic market to host shows on two important television networks, Telemundo and E! Entertainment Latin America. Since joining Telemundo, she has hosted the Latin Billboard Music Awards, Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, the Miss Universe Pageant, and specials related to humanitarian causes, including a Tsunami special “Unidos con el Mundo: por las víctimas del Tsunami,” “Noche de Paz,” benefiting the Special Olympics, and “Live Earth: The Concerts for a Climate in Crisis.” She has been featured several times on People en Español’s “Most Beautiful People” lists.
Chente Barrera-Grammy-winning Tejano superstar Chente Barrera performs music that evokes emotion – from attention-gripping cumbias to heart-felt ballads and powerful rancheras. Self-taught, he's traveled “La Onda” circuit integrating numerous influences, including David Lee Garza y Los Musicales, The Latin Breed, and Conjunto Bernal. He has recorded on more than 220 albums and received several Tejano music awards, including 12-time Drummer of the Year, Music Maker of the Year, and Song of the Year, as well as several Latin Grammys.
FANNY LU-Latin Grammy nominee Fanny Lu is Colombian music’s latest newcomer, bringing a blend of Latin sounds that fuse Caribbean, Merengue, Vallenato, and pop. Fanny Lu began performing in 1994 as host of a television show in her native Colombia. Her first musical project was the 2005 album “Lagrimas Calidas.” The crossover single “No Te Pido Flores" earned broad appeal as the theme song of the popular drama series Amores Cruzados, spending 7 weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 Billboard Charts in Latin America, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, and Mexico. Fanny Lu has also represented Latin America at the White House celebration of Colombian Independence Day.
Kate del Castillo-Kate del Castillo has long received critical acclaim for her acting abilities, in both her native Mexico and around the world. She will next be seen in two films which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival: La Misma Luna, in which she poignantly portrays immigrant mother trying to reunite with the son she left behind in Mexico, and the human trafficking drama Trade, opposite Kevin Kline. She has received the Best Actress prize at the Huelva International Film Festival in Spain, and was nominated for Best Actress at the Ariel Awards, Mexico’s equivalent to the Academy Awards.
Los Amigos Invisibles-Los Amigos Invisibles, a Venezuelan disco-funk ensemble, have become global scenesters and dance music aficionados by producing remixes for Beastie Boys, Basement Jaxx, and Fantastic Plastic Machine. Formed in 1991, Los Amigos Invisibles developed their distinctively eccentric sound as part of the Caracas party scene. Armando Figueredo on keyboards, Jose Luis Pardo on the guitar, Jose Rafael Torres on the bass, Juan Manuel Roura on the drums, Julio Briceno as the lead singer, and Mauricio Arcas on percussion, make up this dynamic sextet. Their influences are extensive and range from acid jazz to the funk-injected sounds of Parliament Funkadelic.
Mandy Gonzalez-Mandy Gonzalez debuted on Broadway as Princess Amneris in the Tim Rice/Elton John musical AIDA. She has since delivered an OBIE Award-winning performance in Eli's Comin', based on the lyrics and music of songwriter Laura Nyro, appeared in the musical Lennon, based on the life of John Lennon, and starred opposite Michael Crawford in Dance of the Vampires. She will appear on stage next in the Broadway musical sensation, In The Heights. Mandy can also be seen on the big screen in the upcoming Across the Universe and lends her voice to the soundtracks of Mulan 2 and Urban Legend.
María Celeste Arrarás-María Celeste Arrarás is the host and managing editor of Telemundo’s Al Rojo Vivo. Maria Celeste, also a best-selling author, is the only female Hispanic journalist/TV host to receive an Emmy Award. Maria Celeste has been featured on the cover of People en Español more than any other Hispanic personality and was named one of the magazine’s "50 Most Beautiful People." In addition, People, its sister magazine, included her in its "100 Most Beautiful People" edition. María Celeste joined NBC’s Today as special co-anchor in 2006 and has also served as a guest co-host and contributing correspondent.
Mary Gamarra-Talented journalist Mary Gamarra of Cada Día con María Antonieta, presents, in a simple and entertaining way, the latest weather reports and how they impact viewers on a daily basis. Previously, Mary was the weather anchor for the Telemundo station in Dallas. She has also served as the news producer at New York’s Noticiero 47 a las 11pm, where she acquired experience behind the cameras. Her journalistic career began as a news writer for the local Univision station in this same city. Mary volunteers as a “big sister” with the Big Brothers, Big Sisters organization.
Miguel Cabrera-Florida Marlin Miguel Cabrera is a four-time All-Star who started his Major League career in 2003, becoming only the third player since 1900 to hit a game-winning home run in his debut game. This Venezuelan superstar’s rookie year accomplishments helped to propel the Marlins to a World Series victory, and since then Miguel, now 24, has become the third youngest player in history to accumulate 500 RBI.
Nicholas Gonzalez-The Stanford and Oxford-educated Nicholas Gonzalez has been hailed for his performances on such quality television shows as ABC’s Ugly Betty and Grey’s Anatomy, NBC’s Law & Order: SVU, and PBS’s American Family. Nicholas gained national exposure on Showtime’s series Resurrection Blvd., and his role on Fox’s popular primetime soap The O.C. earned Nicholas the admiration of younger fans. People en Español has featured him on their “50 Most Beautiful” and “25 Hottest Bachelors” lists. Nicholas recently completed feature films B.O.H.I.C.A. with Brenden Sexton III, Wonderwall with Jenna Dewan & Nestor Serrano, & Por Vida with Danny Glover & Elizabeth Pena.
Rita Moreno-Rita Moreno, the 1990 Hispanic Heritage Awards Honoree for the Arts, has spent her life opening doors for minorities in the field of entertainment. As a teenager, she earned her first Broadway role, and her many talents soon attracted the eyes of Hollywood. Rita remains the first and only Hispanic actress to receive an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and a Tony Award. In addition to her numerous professional recognitions, Rita was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004 by President George W. Bush, the highest possible civilian honor. Currently, Rita can be seen starring in CBS’s new dramatic series Cane.
Shelbie Bruce -Shelbie Bruce made her film debut starring opposite Adam Sandler and Tea Leoni in Spanglish, and quickly emerged as a young Hollywood force to be reckoned with. At the 2005 Imagen Awards, she won the Best Supporting Acting category for her work in the film. Shelbie got her start in modeling and has appeared in more than 30 commercials and renowned catalogues, including Lands End, Talbot, and Limited Too. She has worked on print campaigns for Time Warner Cable and Motorola and recently launched “Florecita,” her own perfume line. In June 2007, Shelbie emceed the National Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards.
Sunny Sauceda-Sunny Sauceda is considered to be one of the best accordion players in the world, and the list of accomplishments that led to his new solo career is long and impressive. The two-time Grammy Award winner performed across the country as part of the record breaking "Fly" tour with the Dixie Chicks. He has appeared in ad campaigns for the Miller Brewing Co. and has one of the top endorsement relationships with Hohner. His hot new solo CD, entitled simply "Sunny," is being released to great fanfare on the prestigious Tejas Records label.
Wilmer Valderrama -Wilmer Valderrama is truly living the American dream. At age 13, he moved with his family from Venezuela to Los Angeles. He learned English quickly and enrolled in high school drama classes to help integrate into American culture. From high school plays and a debut role on network television, to his breakthrough role on That 70’s Show, critical acclaim for films like Fast Food Nation, and his own production company, Mr. Valderrama inspires younger generations with his hard work, determination, and creative spirit. In honor of these early career accomplishments, Mr. Valderrama received the Hispanic Heritage Foundation’s inaugural Inspira Award.