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“Our Brillante Awards not only celebrate those who have improved our community, but they also inspire others to get involved and strive to be the leader our community needs.”
— Thomas Savino, CEO Prospanica

Award-winning teacher and World Poetry Slam Champion to emcee at the Brillante Gala

Joaquín Zihuatanejo is a poet, award winning teacher, and World Poetry Slam Champion from Dallas, Texas.  He is the only poet on the planet to win both the Individual World Poetry Slam Championship held in North America and the European World Cup of Poetry Slam Championship held in Paris, France. Joaquín holds a BA from the University of North Texas in English and an MFA from the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico. His work has been published in Prairie Schooner, Sonora Review, Yellow Medicine Review, and Huizache among other literary journals. Joaquín’s work has been featured on NPR, HBO, and NBC. His poem “Nahui Ocelotl First Son Jaguar Son” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2017. Joaquín’s manuscript, Arsonist, won the Robert Dana-Anhinga Prize for Poetry and will be published by Anhinga Press in the fall of 2018.

Recognizing outstanding contributions to the educational, economic and social well-being of the Hispanic community.

This prestigious annual award is granted to individuals and organizations that have had a significant impact in improving the Hispanic community.

The winners are celebrated and honored during Prospanica's Brillante Gala, an evening of celebration that also recognizes the founders of the organization, highlights the year’s achievements and outlines the path ahead.

The Awards are presented in five categories:

  • Corporate / Government Excellence
  • Prospanica Member Excellence
  • Community Service Excellence
  • Entrepreneur Excellence
  • Educational Excellence

Prospanica is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2018 Brillante Awards, whom we will honor in Milwaukee at the Brillante Gala on Thursday, September 13.

Brillante Award Recipient – Community Service Excellence
Ivonne Diaz-Claisse, Ph.D

Brillante Award Recipient - Corporate Excellence

Brillante Award Recipient- Educational Excellence
Esperanze College of Eastern University

Brillante Award Recipient - Entrepreneurial Excellence
Diana Canto-Sims

Brillante Award Recipient – Prospanica Member Excellence
Raquel Arredondo