Sept 2011 Edition
The Official Publication of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Chamber Update from our President

Lea Marquez Peterson

The summer of 2011 has flown by! We've been busy improving our program and services to better serve our members and the Southern Arizona business community.  We have also added staff members to better serve you! Welcome to Juan - our new Membership Director and Ana - our Director of Corporate Relations!

Over the first eight months of the year, we have focused our efforts on programs that we think can help you grow your business. At our "Coffee with the President" events, I've heard how lean your businesses are - many of you have laid off employees or are worried about growing your number of employees in this tough economy. We hear you!  We've identified three key areas that can help you grow your business with limited staff and that we are focusing on for the reminder of 2011.


2011 Board of Directors

Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors:


Tara Torres Hungate, Arizona Lotus Corp


Edmund Marquez, Allstate
Past Chairman


Felipe Garcia, Vamos a Tucson, MTCVB
Vice Chairman


Bill Addison, Evergreen Mortuary

David A. Newsom, Bank of the West

Sam Williams, New View Group
Laura Olguin, CRT Partners (Jack in the Box)
Lisa Lovallo, Cox
Raquel Moreno Blake
Tannya Gaxiola, Quikhelp
Daniel Fernandez, Citi
Joe Snell, Tucson Regional Economic Opportunities
Gregg Johnson, University of Phoenix
Priscilla Storm, Diamond Ventures
Carlos Ruiz, HT Metals

 Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation Board of Directors:

  • Bob Canchola - McDonalds – CHAIRMAN 
  • Bob Janus - Cox Communications – TREASURER 
  • Kristyn Meza- Strongpoint 
  • Marco Gardner - Texas Instruments 
  • Dr Raji Rhys - University of Arizona 
  • Anna Nasser – University of Arizona 
  • Cindy Ramirez – Caliber 
  • Nico Cuevas – Scholarship Recipient
  • Nick Pierson – Northwestern Mutual
  • David Martinez - Allegra Printing
  • Ramon Martinez - El Charro
  • Dr Alex Kajstura - Pima Community College 
  • Lea Marquez Peterson - Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce 

The Foundation is staffed by the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce office.


Lea Marquez Peterson 

President & CEO   (EMAIL Lea)

Leslie Leon

 Administrator  (EMAIL Leslie)

Maricela Robles

Director of Events   (EMAIL Maricela)

Hannibal Chinchilla

Director of Business Development  (EMAIL Hannibal)

Larissa Valenzuela

Director of International Relations   (EMAIL Larissa)

Ana Gomez Gutowski

Director of Corporate Relations  (EMAIL Ana)

Andrea Rivera

Director of Member Benefits   (EMAIL Andrea)

Juan Ciscomani

Director of Membership  (EMAIL Juan)

THCC Ambassadors

Executive Committee:


Lupita Mitz, Concept 100 Realty



Paloma Lopez Santiago, Junior Achievement of Arizona


Chair Elect

Cisco Estavillo, The MAC Team with Tierra Antigua



Peter Newsheller, Quikhelp


Membership Recruiting Specialist

Diane Kephart, Chick Fil A (El Con) & Roxsann Badilla, Pinnacle Restoration


Marketing Specialist

Leslie Leon, Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce


Ambassadors: Bruce Schreier (Eliot Management Group), Carol Montgomery (Aflac), Anthony Ryan (1000 for 65), Blake Phillips (WildcatTax & Accounting), Jesse Montanez (Unique Photography), Juan Ibarra (New York Life), Doraliz Vega (Nextrio), Monica Barreda, Leticia Ortiz (Davidson & Hosford Advertising), Elisa Bolhm (Elisa Bolhm Make-up Artist), Joe Bribiesca (Beacon Group), Linda Victoria (La Corua), Sandy Canez (BBVA Compass), Mercedes Schlicht (Peoples Mortgage), Myra Romo (Debit Eraser), Claudia Martinez (Meriwest Mortgage), Lupita Ramirez (SolarisPhotography), Javier Guillen (Keller Williams), Samuel Marquez


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THCC YouTube Channel


Chamber Events

Upcoming Events

VIP SEASON PASS - Available year round - $465 - Save Money and Time!


*Note: We are hosting TWO Fiesta Mixers during the months of July, August and September to stimulate business contacts over the summer. Great Networking opportunities!

Tuesday, September 13th - THCC Job Fair at Viscount Suites. 1pm - 5pm. Employer booths are available for $100 for members and $150 for future members.

Thursday, September 15th - Monthly Luncheon celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. 11:30a - 1:30p at the Manning House. Featuring Felipe Garcia of the MTCVB speaking on "Mexican Tourism - How to reach this valuable market for your business"

Friday, September 16th - Mexican Independence Day Fiesta Mixer and Latin Jazz Dance Party at Rialto Theatre Plaza downtown. 5:30p - 9:00p.

Wednesday, September 21st - Almuerzo en Espanol. 11:30a - 1:30p Manning House.

Tuesday, September 27th - Fiesta Mixer at San Carlos Grill sponsored by Pinnacle Restoration. 5:30p - 7:00p


2011 Noche de Exitos Gala - Honoring the Hispanic Businessman, Hispanic Businesswoman and Corporation of the Year. Payment Plan available per ticket for only $25/month. October 15th, 2011 at El Conquistador Resort.

Join our Let's Do Lunch program! Connect for lunch with fellow THCC members.

Welcome New Members

Welcome our New Members since July 1st, 2011.


Southern Arizona Candidate Academy

The Southern Arizona Candidate Academy is open to anyone running for an elected seat at the local, state and federal levels.



Have you considered running for an elected office? Or working on a campaign?

Join us in a non-partisan Candidate Academy. 


Interested in getting involved?

Join a Committee!

Call our office for meetings dates and times

Hispanic Health Committee

Ambassador Committee, Second Tues, 9am

Los Amigos Committee, Tuesdays 11:30a

Public Policy Committee, First and Third Thursdays, 7:30am

Gala Silent Auction Committee

Foundation Ambassadors

Call us at 620-0005 for details

Want to advertise in El Informe?

The mission of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is to advocate for and provide services to help grow our members' businesses.

Chambers of commerce releasing study on impact of Southern AZ's Latino market


The annual DATOS luncheon is co-hosted by the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Over 250 business and community leaders attended the event this year held in June.

"We're pleased to collaborate with the AZHCC on the DATOS Tucson luncheon to raise awareness about the economic impact of the Hispanic community in Southern Arizona, " said Lea Marquez Peterson, President and CEO of the 750-member Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. "This annual event provides vital information about Tucson Hispanics, who now comprise 42 percent of the city's residents. The luncheon is a great opportunity for area businesses interested in focusing on the fastest growing segment of our community."



Quick Facts:

  • Pima County has 338,802 Hispanics, 35% of the county total, while Hispanic statewide are 30% of the population. Tucson's Hispanic population is 225,502, or 42% of the population.
  • Between 2000-2010, Hispanics in Pima County grew at more than twice the rate of the county's total population.
  • Between 2000-2010, Hispanics accounted for 83 percent of the Tucson's population growth.
  • The purchasing power for Pima County Hispanics will grow 53 percent from $4.9 Billion in 2008 to $7.5 Billion in 2013
  • Between 2000-2010, the number of White, non-Hispanic K-12 students in Pima County dropped by 4,463 with Hispanics growing by 21,689 students.

Source: DATOS Tucson report by Dr. Loui Olivas, Professor Emeritus, WP Carey School of Business at ASU Tempe.



Strong Mexican Economy Can Help Businesses Here

Andrea Kelly (AZ Public Media)

The Mexican economy is faring better than the the U.S. economy, according to some economic measures. Moody's Investors Service said this month our neighbor to the south is in a good position to weather economic shocks.
As the United States attempts to grow its way out of a recession and explores what a lower national credit rating means, Arizona businesses are taking advantage of working across the border, says Larissa Valenzuela, the international relations director for the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
"There's a lot of potential niche of markets in Mexico for American products and American brands. That is very easy to notice because Mexican imports are 80 percent from the United States," Valenzuela says.
Pima County sees $1 billion a year from Mexican tourism, says Lea Márquez-Peterson, president of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. She says that's another way the state of the Mexican economy is important here.


International Relations

Tucson Hispanic Chamber opens Hermosillo satellite


"We know that our members have cut back, laid off, they're very lean," said Lea Marquez Peterson, president and CEO of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber, which has about 750 members. "But they're all looking for additional revenue streams."

The chamber's new office is in Hermosillo, Sonora, inside the tourism office Vamos a Tucson. Chamber members traveled to Mexico last week for the ribbon cutting and met with other chambers that might collaborate with them.




Impact of Hispanic kids is huge, meeting hears

Pima County enrollment in K-12 schools grew this decade practically solely due to Hispanic kids.

If it weren't for the 112 percent increase of Hispanic students, schools would have closed and teachers would have been out of jobs.

Also, because students drive the spending decisions made by their parents in terms of clothing, food, transportation, etc., Pima County's economy would have suffered.


Congratulations to our Hispanic Business Man, Woman and Corporation of the Year

The Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (THCC) is pleased to announce their selection for the 2011 Hispanic Businessman, Businesswoman and Corporation of the Year. The awardees will be recognized at the annual Noche de Exitos Gala on October 15th, 2011 at El Conquistador Resort.  They have been selected from a pool of outstanding candidates by the Selection Committee for their commitment to the Hispanic community in Southern Arizona and business success. 

(To register visit

The 2011 Hispanic Businessman of the Year is Roger Canchola, the President of Arcos del Oro which owns five McDonalds franchises in Southern Arizona. Roger’s family is longstanding and well respected in the community. His father, Jose Canchola and his mother, Carmen Canchola were honored previously in 2003 as the Hispanic Businessman and Businesswoman of the Year by the Chamber. Roger began his career in McDonalds in 1976 and assisted his family in growing their organization from four restaurants to eight until 2004. He later purchased three restaurants from his parents in 2004 and has since grown his operation to five locations. His company’s total sales exceed $13 million dollars a year and he has over 250 employees. Roger states that the most important part of his business is his commitment and involvement in many community outreach programs. One notable event – Christmas Day in Nogales provides toys, clothes and food to the needy children of Nogales. In addition, his firm assists in providing college scholarships to Hispanic youth in Southern Arizona via the Tucson Hispanic Chamber Foundation Jose Canchola Golf Fiesta sponsored by Cox. Through Roger’s leadership, his company supports several youth sports teams, and numerous local and national charities.

The 2011 Hispanic Businesswoman of the Year is Tannya Gaxiola, the owner of Quikhelp, a legal documentation preparation firm. Tannya is a prominent, active businessperson who has recently expanded her business to two retail Quikhelp locations and an online presence. She is a distinguished graduate of the Eller school of Finance and graduated with an MBA from Harvard University. She previously worked for a major investment banking firm in New York City and was a consultant for the telecom industry before founding her business in Tucson. She sits on the board of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and is a principal instructor for the THCC Business University. In addition, Tannya is an active board member of Las Comadres, an organization that supports THCC member non profits in benefiting the Latino community.

The 2011 Corporation of the Year is El Rio Community Health Center. El Rio is a federally qualified community health center founded in 1970. The mission of El Rio is improving the health of our community through comprehensive, accessible, affordable, quality and compassionate care. El Rio is the largest provider in Pima County of medical and dental services to the uninsured, underinsured and Medicaid populations. Sixty- eight percent of their patients are of Hispanic origin. Annually, there are more than 280,000 patient visits that take place at El Rio. It is the 14th largest community health center in the country. The company is staffed by more than 740 employees with 59% of the workforce of Hispanic descent. El Rio has partnered with many local organizations to provide community outreach events such as the “Movies In the Park” and free “Back to School Immunization events”. El Rio Community Health Center is an important organization in the Southern Arizona community and supports the Hispanic community.


Tucson Hispanic Chamber Endorses Rosemont Copper

 TUCSON, AZ (May 16, 2011) - The Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (THCC) Board of Directors has voted to publicly endorse the proposed Rosemont Copper Mine. The positive economic impact and the history of copper in the State of Arizona weighed heavily in the decision.


Member Spot Light

THCC Member CyraCom International Creates 400 New Jobs in Tucson

The Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce announced that one of its members, CyraCom International, Inc. has added 100 Tucson interpreter employees since the beginning of the year, bringing its total number of Tucson interpreters hired to 400. CyraCom International, Inc. opened its Tucson center in November 2009. 

CyraCom International, an industry leading language services provider, was recently recognized in the Star 200 survey by the Arizona Daily Star as the 2nd fastest growing company in Southern Arizona. The company provides paid training for bilingual speakers to become professional interpreters, one of the fastest growing careers in the country, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. The company provides interpretation in over 170 languages, with Spanish, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Korean and Russian being the most frequently used. 

“Organic job creation is not easy in today’s economic climate,” stated Lea Marquez-Petersen, CEO of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. “The Tucson Hispanic Chamber is excited to see companies create jobs within Southern Arizona.” 


Let's do Lunch!

Connect for lunch with THCC members

We are bringing you a new member benefit!

"Let's do lunch"

* Meet and engage in more intimate conversations.

* Maximize your networking opportunities by leaving the logistics to us!

Join the Let's Do Lunch! program and have lunch twice a month at member restaurants with fellow chamber members. This is a great opportunity to connect and build your business!

All for only $20.00 a month! (A three month commitment is required)

How does it work?
Maricela Robles, Director of Events will email you with your pre-scheduled lunch and directions to the member restaurant. You will meet with non-competitive business people and have an unstructured lunch for four. Food / Beverage is not included.


10 Tips for Business Owner and Sales Manager for Increasing Sales

Sam Williams, President, New View Group, LLC

10 Tips for Business owner and Sales Manager for Increasing Sales


Watch these 3 great videos!

Developing Your Elevator Pitch

Learn how to simplify a message to get people interested in what your company has to offer.

7 Tips for Effective Networking

Networking is critical to business success, so review these tips to break bad habits and make networking work for you.


Finding Networking Opportunities New Video!

Learn how to find networking opportunities.


How Facebook Can Benefit Your Business


By now everyone has heard of the social networking service, Facebook. The company isnt all that old – it launched in February 2004, and quickly grew into an internet sensation that currently has more than 500 million active users.

The population of Facebook, if it were a country, would be 3rd in the world after China and India. Those 500 million users spend over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook, and 250 million active users log on to Facebook any given day.

Smart companies are learning how to harness the power of Facebook – with its vast amounts of information regarding consumer preferences, trends, and like/dislikes, it has never been this easy to reach your target market. However, we recognize that Facebook can be very intimidating for businesses used to operating in the traditional marketing realm of TV advertisements, newspapers and magazines, or radio announcements.

The following information will not only demystify some of the questions surrounding using Facebook for professional purposes but also prove that Facebook is an invaluable and increasingly essential part of a growing business.



Do you have Health Insurance?

Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is pleased to offer a limited benefit medical plan designed to help cover the cost of the everyday medical needs such as doctor visits, lab and X-ray, Emergency/Urgent Care visits and Hospitalization. The program provides guarantee-issue coverage and is available to THCC members.


THCC Member Orientation

Whether you are an existing member or a new member...Thank you for investing in our chamber!

We are asking every member to attend an Orientation. We've added a lot of new services and benefits we want to make sure that you are aware of.

We have scheduled our next Orientation for Wednesday, September 7th at 9:00am! Join us in the morning for a one hour session at Brown Mackie College (4585 E Speedway). This is a great opportunity to learn about: how we can help promote your business, how to reach the Hispanic market, how our chamber advocates on your behalf at the City, County and State your chamber benefits (NEW Member Discount Program, free web landing page, coupons, Smartphone app, calendar of event listings and more...)


Coping with Unemployment

What is coping with unemployment?

Coping with unemployment means breaking away from the past and facing your future. It means dealing with the emotional, financial, and professional challenges unemployment can bring. Although this process can be painful, facing unemployment with a plan will help make coping with it easier.

El Informe Newletter - Sept 2011 Edition

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