2022-2023 HPWA BOARD OF DIRECTORS
IVONNE ALVAREZ, PRESIDENT
Ivonne Alvarez is a Vice President SBA Lending Specialist for Regions Bank. Ivonne has over 20 years of banking experience. Graduate from Montclair State University with a Finance major. Ivonne has been a part of HPWA for 6 years as a member, mentorship chair, board member, and 2021-2022 President-Elect. Ivonne is passionate about supporting the Hispanic community in Tampa Bay.
IVONNE PELAEZ, PRESIDENT-ELECT
Ivonne Pelaez owner and Wellness Director at Hanaq Prana Studio. Ivonne holds a Mass Communications Degree from University of South Florida. She is a Nutrition Specialist from the American Academy of Sports Dietitians and Nutritionists. In addition, she holds an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach certificate from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition of New York. She has been in the health and wellness industry for 10 years.
An HPWA member since 2017, Ivonne previously served as the HPWA Secretary. Additionally, she currently serves as President Elect.
Ivonne was born in Bogota, Colombia and has called Tampa home for 24 years. She is passionate about empowering, inspiring and helping women, teens and children regain control of their health thru fitness classes, yoga classes and nutrition coaching.
YURIMA CABRERA, TREASURER
Yurima Cabrera is an Assistant Vice President SBA Express Banker at Regions Bank. Yurima holds a Liberal Arts Degree from Hillsborough Community College. She has been in the banking industry for 15 years.
Yurima has been a an HPWA member since 2019. Additionally, she currently serves as a Board Member for Regions Bank Tampa Bay DEI Network. She has been a volunteer at the United Way and Academy Prep Center for Education for the past 4 years.
Yurima was born in Habana, Cuba and has called Tampa home for 24 years. She loves to give back to her community and passionate about supporting education and professional growth for Hispanic Women.
PAOLA CERON, SECRETARY
Paola Ceron is a Financial Solutions Intermediate Analysist at Citibank. Paola holds a Bachelor's Degree in Finance from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras and a Master's in Finance from Walden University. She is a FINCERT Personal Finance Counselor and holds a Personal Finance Coach certification from Finanzas al Maximo (Sistema Ana G. Mendez). She has been in the finance industry for 5 years.
An HPWA member since 2020, Paola previously served as the 2021-2022 HPWA Secretary.
Paola was born in Caguas, Puerto Rico and has called Tampa home for 4 years. She is passionate about traveling and being with friends and family.
MARIA DEBES, MEMBER AT LARGE
Maria Debes is the CEO of Seguros María Debes and the author of Otro vuelo de mariposa. She holds a degree in Bilingual Secretary and a certification as a Business and Sales Specialist Agent.
Maria served as the 2021-2022 HPWA Membership Co-Chair. She was awarded Empresaria Revelación by the non-profit Nuetra América in 2017, selected as professional woman of the year by Ana G. Méndez University in 2018, and received awards for her professional accomplishments by Eagles Traning Academy and the Empresa Publicitaria Enfoque in 2019.
Maria was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
ANDREA BUSTAMANTE, MEMBER AT LARGE
Andrea Bustamante is a Project Manager at EMB Builders & Contractor, Corp. Andrea holds a B.A. in Global Business Management and a B.A. in English Creative Writing from the University of South Florida, where she was a Kosove Society Scholar and a King O’ Neal Scholar.
An HPWA member since 2019, Andrea was a 2020-2021 HPWA Mentorship Program Mentee and previously served as the 2021-2022 HPWA Communications Chair. Additionally, she currently serves as a Vice President of the USF Kosove Society Alumni. Her volunteer work has been recognized with the 2022 HPWA Star Award.
Andrea was born in Barranquilla, Colombia and has called Tampa home for 13 years. She is passionate about storytelling, connecting students to resources that make higher education possible to pursue, and dancing.
MARYNES MATEO, MEMBER AT LARGE
Marynes Mateo is a Managing Director at Matcon Construction Services, Inc. Marynes holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of South Florida and a Real Estate License from the State of Florida. She has been in the Construction industry since 2018. Prior to joining Matcon Construction and over the course of 15 years, Marynes held various leadership roles in the banking industry managing complex treasury services for corporate clients.
An HPWA member since 2018, Marynes was a HPWA 2021-2022 Program Mentor. Additionally, she currently serves as Co-Chair for Cohort ’22 for the Tampa Bay Chamber -Minority Business Accelerator Program and a previous member of the University of South Florida ISLAC Advisory Council.
Marynes was born in Mobile, Alabama and then moved to Venezuela with her family where she spent her childhood and teenage years. Marynes has called Tampa home for 23 years. She is passionate about guiding and inspiring our leaders of tomorrow achieve their educational and professional goals.
JUAN CARLOS PINTO, MEMBER AT LARGE
Juan Carlos Pinto is a Managing Director and Founder at Accident Agents LLC. Previously, Juan Carlos worked for CitiBank for 25 years and was the Vice President for International Trade. Juan Carlos holds a General Business and Finance Degree from the University of South Florida. He has been in the personal injury industry for over 2 years and over 30 years of experience as an International Trade expert.
Juan Carlos' has been an HPWA corporate member with Accident Agents LLC since 2021 and an HPWA supporter for the last 12 years. He currently serves as the Community Outreach Committee Chair. His professional and volunteer work has been recognized with the following awards, among others: 2009 Latinos Movers and Shakers by Latin Times Magazine, 2011 Pasco's Hispanic Pride Citizen by La Gaceta Latina newspaper, 2013 Sol Community Award b USF's Hispanic Heirtage & SOL (Status of Latnos) Committees, 2016 Champion of the Forest by Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful, 2021 Prestigio Hispano by the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
Juan Carlos was born in Caracas, Venezuela and has called Tampa home for 25 years. He is passionate about helping others, servicing his community, and connecting people and Latin-American culture.
MEGAN A. RAPOZO, IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT
Megan A. Rapozo is an Real Estate Accountant at CliftonLarsonAllen (CLA) and owner of Martini Export Inc., a brokerage exporting company from the United States to South America. She holds Master of Science in Supply Chain Management and a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from the University of South Florida.
Megan has been an HPWA member since 2018 as Mentorship Program Mentee. She served as the 2021-2022 HPWA President and 2020-2021 HPWA President-Elect and has served in the Board of Directors since 2019 in the Mentorship, Fundraising, and Communications Committees.
Megan was born in Miami, Florida and was raised in Bolovia. She has called Tampa home since she was 15. Megan is passionate about helping Hispanic women with their personal and professional development to become the best version of themselves and encourage others to pursue further education.
MARGARITA GONZALEZ, HONORARY CHAIR
Margarita Gonzalez retired from the City of Tampa after almost 30 years of service. There, she served as Community/Public Relations Coordinator. In addition to her communication duties, she was the Executive Producer and Host of two award-winning television programs and a trailblazer doing Hispanic community liaison work. Her extensive knowledge of governmental, cultural, community and international affairs, has made it possible for Hispanics to have access to services and economic development programs, and for others to better understand the Latino community.
Margarita graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.A. in Mass Communication and a Minor in Spanish. She also holds an A.A. Degree from Hillsborough Community College.
Margarita Gonzalez is Co-founder and Honorary Chairperson of HPWA (1990) and HPWF (2019). She has no assigned duties; however, during the last 32 years Margarita has served on all HPWA’s committees and on HPWF’s bylaws, fundraising and communication committees. She also volunteers with other non-profit organizations.
Gonzalez have been recognized with numerous awards, among them: NHL Tampa Bay Lightning Community Hero, NFL-Bucs Hispanic Hero, THHI Hispanic Woman of the Year (1989), Girl Scouts’ Woman of Distinction, and a City Council of Tampa Commendation.
Margarita was born in Habana, Cuba and arrived in Tampa in 1966. She is passionate about creating educational opportunities for others and has worked on many scholarship fundraising efforts and on establishing scholarship endowments. Thanks to her TB Lightning Community Hero $50,000 Award, she established the Margarita Gonzalez-HPWF Latino Scholarship Endowment at USF and the first scholarship was presented in September 2021.
NELCY BALTZ, HONORARY CHAIR
Nelcy Baltz a graduate from Hillsborough Community College and the co-founder of SN Shots Photography. For over a decade, Nelcy has enhaced her clients' images through custom photo sessions with her photography business, using their essence and personality to bring their visions to life.
A member of HPWA since 2010, Nelcy has previously served in several Board positions, including Communications Chair, Membership Chair, Outreach Chair, Mentorship Chair, Treasurer. She was the 2018-2019 HPWA President and currently holds an Honorary Chair position. Nelcy is the co-founder and President Emeritus of HPWF, established in 2019, and is appointed to represent HPWA at the Commission on the Status of Women (COSW) of Hillsborough County Florida (2021-2023). Additionally, she serves as an officer on the Board of PorColombia Tampa Chapter and supports other non-profit organizations such of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Tampa Bay, Miss Latina Tampa, and Ninos Cantores de Tampa, Tampa Hispanic Heritage, Inc., Sheriff’s Hispanic Advisory Council, and the Mayor’s Hispanic Advisory Council.
Nelcy was born in Bogota, Colombia and has called Tampa home for 17 years. Nelcy is excited to continue the legacy of the HPWA, helping Latin women further their education and significantly improve the potential for success.