BOARD CANDIDATES' STATEMENTS
There are several seats on the ALMA Board that are open for election/re-election this year. Board membership is voluntary, but we hold an election when it is necessary to fill open seats. Current board members may seek re-election. Below you can read statements by candidates who are running in the December 2019 election. Please review before your emailed ballot arrives.
I am interested in re-joining ALMA by throwing my hat in the ring to fill the open Board Member position. Currently, I am the Community and Public Relations Manager for Bashas’ Family of Stores (Bashas’, Food City and AJ’s Fine Foods).
My media work began in California in 1998, a month after finishing high school. I worked in the Monterey market (English and Spanish markets), I then worked at KESQ/KUNA TV and KMIR in Palm Desert, CA. In 2004, Telemundo Phoenix hired me. I remained in this market for the next 10 years, working at Telemundo, FOX 10, 12 News and CBS 5 News (prior to merging with KTVK).
Before joining Bashas’, I worked at Donate Life/Done Vida Arizona as the organization’s media and multicultural relations coordinator; I held that position for nearly five years. During this time, I used my media knowledge to provide information to our community – particularly the Hispanic population of our state – by working closely with our local media partners.
The goal was to encourage donor registration in minority populations (these communities are at a higher risk of needing an organ transplant than other groups), but I made it a personal mission to provide education because, as a minority myself who once upon a time did not speak English, I knew that this was the missing piece of the puzzle.
I diligently worked with our media partners, including Univisión, who graciously provided a two-hour window to host Done Vida to answer questions from the public. This was an excellent opportunity to reach a demographic that due to cultural beliefs and myths, is hesitant to register as organ and tissue donors.
A story that I’m particularly proud of is one that you might have heard about on the news. A pediatric patient from Phoenix received a heart transplant and, for the first time, her donor’s mother and her own met, right here in Phoenix (https://www.today.com/health/it-s-indescribable- mom-hears-son-s-heartbeat-3-years-t70516).
From identifying the story, it’s potential to become an international story, planning and figuring out logistics, this is the story that I am the most proud of -- not only from a professional level (the story has received more than $100 million views...and counting) -- but also from a personal level because through my work, people around the globe were able to understand that organ donation is not about body parts -- it’s about human connection, kindness and generosity. Within days after the story aired, Arizona’s registry increased by 900 %, something that had never been seen before in the organization’s history.
I am interested in becoming more involved with ALMA again because journalism, identifying stores and story-telling is my passion. In a time when the credibility of journalists is constantly scrutinized, it is important – more than ever – to educate future journalists and give them the tools they need to not only to be excellent ambassadors of this great profession, but also for their communities.
I hope to join ALMA’s Board of Directors because I believe I have valuable experience to share. ALMA’s Board of Directors does a great job for future journalists, and I would be privileged to learn from its members. Lastly, I would feel honored – and humbled – to have the opportunity to play a role – no matter how small – in our future generation of journalists.
Thank you for your consideration.
Running for Re-election
I have been a member of the Arizona Latino Media Association for over two decades. I have been on the ALMA board for nearly a decade and have served as president for several years.
During my involvement with ALMA, I have helped the organization with ongoing efforts to present diverse journalism-centered programming and professional training, mentor students, and award scholarships to deserving students with talent and financial need. I have served on the ALMA fundraising committee, doing outreach to potential donors and sponsors. I have helped to organize and present ALMA's annual High School Journalism Workshop, including getting sponsorships to help pay for the event, lining up speakers, and serving as a judge for the writing competition. I have organized and gotten financial, as well as programmatic, support for several events ALMA has hosted in partnership with Barrett, The Honors College at Arizona State University, the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at ASU, and the Education Writers Association.
In addition, I have represented ALMA at the National Association of Hispanic Journalists Conference and interfaced with NAHJ leadership and staff on efforts to support and promote Latino journalists and communications professionals. I also have represented ALMA at Unity and Society of Professional Journalists conferences and events. My husband and I have made financial and in-kind contributions to ALMA.
I truly believe in ALMA's mission to support journalism education and promote diversity in the journalism profession. I am proud of my long-time association with ALMA and hope to continue serving this outstanding organization as a board member.
Thank you for your consideration and your vote.
Octavio Pulido Nevarez
It is with great excitement that I submit my name for consideration for membership on the Arizona Latino Media Association Board of Directors. Over the past eight years I have built my professional career in two of Arizona’s main Latino media organizations; first as a producer and multimedia journalist at Univision Arizona and for the past three years as an anchor and multimedia journalist at Telemundo Arizona.
Working as a journalist in Arizona has been one of the greatest experiences of my life, but it would not have been possible without ALMA. Upon moving to Arizona, Alma introduced me to the state’s journalism community, connecting me with my mentor, former boss, and leader for Latino media in Arizona, Juan Villa. Strong mentors and a robust network is key to professional success, and I found that through ALMA. Further, as a member of ALMA I experienced firsthand the great impact the organization can have on an aspiring journalist. A few years ago, I received a scholarship to attend my first NAHJ journalist conference, an experience that has had a lasting impact on my career.
It’s my hope that I can be a part of strengthening Arizona’s network of Latino journalists, serving as a mentor and resource for recent graduates and new colleagues. I want to be a part of ALMA’s fundraising and volunteer efforts that will help shape the futures of journalism in Arizona and the country.
Running for Re-election
Two years ago, I decided to leave my job of 12 years at The New York Times to stay in Arizona and teach at the Cronkite School, and I did so because I wanted to leave a mark on the world. One might say that there's no bigger platform than The New York Times to leave such mark, but I disagree. My world at the Cronkite School and in Arizona may have be smaller, but the impact I've had is significantly greater and longer lasting, especially among the aspiring journalists and young journalists of color that I come across in the classroom and through the events and initiatives promoted by ALMA. One of the ways to touch the lives of these journalists is by inspiring them to value who they are — value the fact that they are "different" — and use that to make them better professionals and better people. Another is by giving them tools to help advance their careers, both in terms of training and also through financial help.
A lot has happened in my life since I joined the ALMA board and, at ALMA, I found purpose to keep going (and I also found amazing friends who have always been there for me). My work isn't finished. I hope to be given the opportunity to serve another term as a board member at ALMA to keep it going and to continue to increase the reach and relevance of our organization.
Running for Re-election
My years of working in newsrooms around the country showed me the value of having a diverse journalism corps. Equitable representation among reporters, editors and managers was the best strategy I saw for the news to be more inclusive and reflective of the society we live in. I want to run for the ALMA board so we can continue to prepare young adults for these opportunities and to advocate for broader hiring in newsrooms among media executives so the growing Latino population will be portrayed as the fully contributing members of society that we are.
My second career as a communications/media relations professional has added to my toolkit of getting our messages out to the right audience and is something I want to use on ALMA’s behalf. That’s why I would like to have your vote for this position. As a co-founder of ALMA, I’m committed to its success and helping my fellow professionals succeed.