A distinguished panel of Dominican women in city, state and federal government shared their advice about available opportunities for minority small businesses in New York City at a seminar hosted by Hostos Community College on Wednesday, February 1st from 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM at the College’s C Building, Faculty Dining Room.
The event was the first of several at the College to celebrate Dominican Heritage Month and sponsored by the Institutional Advancement Division. The program was moderated by García Reyes, Associate Dean of Community Relations, and greeted by Hostos President Dr. Félix V. Matos Rodríguez.
“I am proud that Hostos has the largest percentage of Dominican students in the country. For years the college has engaged in scholarly and cultural exchanges with the Dominican Republic to support the younger generations of Dominicans to cultivate philanthropic, scholastic, and entrepreneurial partnerships with their homeland,” indicated President Matos Rodríguez. “The women in today’s panel are leaders in our community. I want them and minority owned businesses to think of us here at Hostos as partners. We are committed to partnering with small businesses in order to expand professional opportunities for our neighborhoods and our future leaders who are here in our college.”
The prominent panel of Dominican women included: Alejandra Castillo, National Deputy Director of the U.S. Department of Commerce/Minority Business Development Agency; the Honorable Diana Reyna, New York City Council Member and Chairwoman of the NYC Small Business Council Committee; Yrthya Dinzey-Flores, Chief Diversity Officer of New York State and cabinet member of New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo; and Elizabeth De León, Attorney and Deputy Commissioner of the New York City Small Business Services.
The event speakers presented the different programs available to minority owned businesses at all governmental levels. In addition, the panelists answered questions from the participants on their specific organization’s needs and opportunities.
Other distinguished participants included: Quenia Abreu, President and CEO of the NYC Women’s Chamber of Commerce, Josephine Infante, President and CEO of Hunts Point Economic Development Corporation; and Charito Cisneros Founder and President of The New York Hispanic Cosmetology and Beauty Chamber of Commerce.
In attendance from Hostos Community College were: Ms. Dolly Martínez, Deputy to the President and Assistant Vice President for College Affairs and the highest ranking Dominican in the CUNY system; Ana M. Carrión-Silva, Vice President for Institutional Advancement;
Dr.Carlos Molina, Vice President for Continuing Education & Workforce Development; and Ms. Mercedes Moscat, Executive Associate for the Office of the President.
Closing remarks were given by Attorney Raysa Castillo, Maria Khury, business consultant; Nurys De Oleo from State Sen. Adriano Espaillat’s office and Josiris Ureña from State Sen. Gustavo Rivera’s Office.
The event was co-sponsored and supported by the Consulado General de La República Dominicana en New York; the offices of State Senators Adriano Espaillat and Gustavo Rivera; the offices of New York State Assemblymen Nelson Castro and Guillermo Linares; the office of New York City Councilman Ydanis Rodríguez; the New York Women’s Chamber of Commerce; the Hunts Point Chamber of Commerce; New York State Chamber of Commerce; New York State Federation of Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; Comité Vuelo 587/Committee of Flight 587; Hunts Point Economic Development Corporation; Castillo & Associates P.C., Raysa Castillo, Esq.; The New York Hispanic Cosmetology and Beauty Chamber of Commerce; The Association of Dominican American Supervisors and Administrators (ADASA); Dominican Women Development Center; María Khury Travel Inc.; La Gran Parada y Desfile Dominicano del Bronx Inc.; CUNY Dominican Studies Institute; The Department of Youth and Community Development Agencies (DYCD); The National Dominican Studies Association; Centro Civico Cultural Dominicano; The Dominican American Foundation Inc; and Dominican Sunday, Inc.