WASHINGTON, D.C.–(HISPANIC PR WIRE – BUSINESS WIRE)–Sept. 11, 2003–The Congressional Hispanic Caucus announced today the formation of a new Corporate America Task Force and Advisory Committee. George Herrera, President & CEO of the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC), was appointed to head the new advisory committee.
Hispanics are currently the largest minority group in the nation, comprising 14 percent of the total population and nearly $600 billion in combined purchasing power. Despite this, few Hispanics occupy pivotal corporate positions. Only 1.7% of all board seats in Fortune 1,000 companies are held by Hispanics and only 15% of all Fortune 1,000 companies have Hispanic representation in their governing bodies. The new Corporate America Task Force, with the help of its Advisory Committee, will help put pressure on corporate America to diversity their leadership.
“The Corporate America Task Force sends a clear and powerful message to Corporate America–act now to make your boardrooms reflect the diversity of the nation and level the playing field for procurement opportunities for Hispanic-owned businesses,” said George Herrera, USHCC President & CEO and Chair of the Advisory Committee of the Corporate America Task Force.
Rep. Joe Baca, chair of the Corporate America Task Force, added: “We expect corporate America to be good citizens when it comes to their hiring practices, when it comes to their business practices and when it comes to their outreach to the Hispanic community.”
The Corporate America Task Force represents the first time that the Congressional Hispanic Caucus will partner with outside organizations to try to integrate corporate boardrooms. This task force is committed to introducing more of a Hispanic presence on corporate boards; increasing procurement opportunities for Hispanic businesses; and mentoring programs that will help Hispanics advance in corporate America.
The task force has outlined a list of criteria that corporations should follow to reach out to the Hispanic community, including increasing Hispanic representation on corporate boards and in senior management positions; developing mechanisms to recruit, support, and promote Hispanics; increasing procurement for Hispanic-owned businesses; increasing corporate dollars for Hispanic companies in the entertainment industry; and outreach to Hispanic students and creating scholarship programs. The task force will evaluate the progress of Corporate America by holding forums and field hearings. The national organizations joining this new effort include the USHCC, ASPIRA, the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility, Hispanic College Fund, National Hispanic Corporate Council, Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, TELACU, New America Alliance and the National Association of Minority Automotive Dealers, National Council for La Raza and National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators.
The USHCC represents the interests of more than 1.2 million Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States and Puerto Rico, which earn more than $200 billion annually. It serves as the umbrella organization for over 130 local Hispanic chambers nationwide, and it actively promotes the economic growth and development of Hispanic entrepreneurs. For more information visit http://www.ushcc.com.
United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Maria Ibanez, 202-842-1212