The UMOS Hispanic Awards Banquet is an annual event honoring the contributions of Wisconsin Hispanics to their communities. Nominations are submitted to an awards committee, which presents the following awards: Hispanic Man of the Year, Hispanic Woman of the Year, Hispanic Youth of the Year, and Hispanic Family of the Year.
For more information, call 414-389-6004 or email Vanessa.firstname.lastname@example.org
Yolanda Hernandez, Nelson Tejada and Zaydi Tejada of Kenosha, Wisconsin, owned Mimos Candy and Gifts for eight years and Uptown Restaurant for six.
The family, through Uptown Restaurant, supported the Latino community in Kenosha by donating food and money to Saint Mark’s Church for the yearly Easter retreat, to local shelters, as well as other churches in the community.
For the restaurant, they would buy products locally to help keep money within the community, while providing job opportunities to Kenosha residents. They often served meals, without charge, to residents in need.
Because of the protests that took place in Kenosha, they were forced to close the restaurant. The restaurant was the unfortunate casualty of one of the fires during the protests. They lost everything. Although the family has gone through tough times, they remain motivated by the love and support they have received from others.
Zaydi works at Children’s Hospital and aspires to attend Medical College in Milwaukee and become a pediatrician. We know she will succeed.
Sergio M. González, Ph.D., is a twentieth-century historian with a focus on U.S. immigration, labor, religion, and the development of Latino communities in the U.S. Midwest. Dr. Gonzalez is an Assistant Professor of Latinx Studies in the Departments of History and Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at Marquette University.
The Wisconsin Historical Society Press published Dr. Gonzalez’ graduate studies’ seminal research, “Mexicans in Wisconsin.” In an age rampant with anti-immigrant misinformation, Dr. Gonzalez’ book relates how a vibrant and resilient immigrant Mexican population, since the 19th century, settled into urban and rural Wisconsin communities. The book anchors the next generation of immigrant and migrant struggles against prejudice, access to education and worker rights.González extends his academic skills into community service by serving on the boards of the Labor and Working-Class History Association, the Immigration and Ethnic History Society, the Wisconsin Latinx History Collective, Wisconsin Humanities, the State of Wisconsin Historic Preservation Review Board and Voces de la Frontera.
Sergio has received numerous honors, awards, and recognitions: Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice, Voice for Justice Award, Wisconsin Most Powerful Latinos, Madison 365, Centro Hispano Ilda Conteris Thomas Community Leadership Award, and the Department of History Meritorious Service Award, University of Wisconsin-Madison, to name a few.
Dr. Gonzalez‘ academic achievements, his invaluable work on the contributions of early Mexican migrant and immigrant families, and his life-long commitment to community service merits Sergio M. Gonzalez’ selection as the 2022 UMOS Hispanic Man of the Year.
Celina Echeveste-Duket, M.S. earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Spanish from Alverno College, and her Master’s Degree in Exceptional Education from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Celina also obtained a Bilingual Spanish Early Childhood Teacher Certification from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She joined Milwaukee Area Technical College in 2015 as a part-time instructor and later transitioned to a full-time faculty member.
Prior to her current role, Celina dedicated her early career as a Bilingual Early Childhood Special Education teacher for 10 years within the Milwaukee Public School District. During a trip with her parents to Mexico, Celina recalled her unease at seeing how children with special needs were treated. She recalled that parents were ashamed of their children, and they were not getting the help they needed.
Celina decided to do something. She created a guidebook that would help parents, and others, identify the characteristics and initial warning signs of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Celina was selected to present her research at the American Psychological Association.
Celina has made significant contributions and educational impacts as a bilingual educator throughout her career. She has taught 275 Milwaukee Public School bilingual education students and 900 MATC adult learners. As a volunteer, Celina has taught 105 Basilica of Saint Josaphat third graders on Sundays. She has also volunteered with the UMOS Brides Walk and Mexican Independence Parade.
Celina received the 2019 Educator of the Year Award from the Wisconsin Association for Bilingual Education, as well as the Distinguished Level of Performance recognition from the Milwaukee Public Schools.
In her free time Celina enjoys mentoring future learners and advocating for equal success and resources for Hispanic/Latino students and their families.
Regina Rodriguez has overcome many obstacles growing up in Milwaukee. But that didn’t stop her. Gina, as she likes to be called, is a Milwaukee native with Mexican, Salvadorian, and Puerto Rican roots. She is a first-generation Hispanic student and graduate of Milwaukee Public Schools. Gina graduated from Carmen Schools of Science & Technology as an Honor Roll student with a 3.8 GPA.
Gina earned a prestigious spot at Marquette University in the Equal Opportunity Program (EOP) for her high school academic achievements. She is currently a sophomore college student attending Marquette University with a Criminology and Law Studies major.
Gina is part of the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office Cadet Troop 890 where she earned the title of Leader/Captain of the Cadet Troop. She serves the community by engaging and helping organize events throughout the city of Milwaukee all while training for a successful career in law enforcement.
Regina Rodriguez is also an active member and participant in the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee Graduation Plus Program. The program helps first generation students remain in college and prepare for their futures.
Gina has volunteered at the Police District National Night Out events, at Mexican Fiesta, for the UMOS Breakfast with Santa event and Toys for Tots.
Regina Rodriguez is a determined young woman. She is determined to become a law enforcement professional and pursue a career in public safety. She is also determined to show that one’s past does not have to determine one’s future, decisions, or career choices.
Regina Rodriguez is a fitting example of a UMOS Hispanic Youth of the Year Award Recipient.
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