© 2016 Sensory Friends
The Annual 2016 LATISM Conference Highlights Latino Entrepreneurship & Advocates For Latino Empowerment
I had promised that I would write about my experience at this year’s LATISM (Latinos in Tech and Innovative Social Media) Conference in Orlando, but we (all digital influencers) have been on the move since the event ended a few weeks ago. The LATISM conference offers digital influencers from across the country the opportunity to network, collaborate, and learn new ways of using social media platforms for advancing our individual social causes – and this year's event didn’t disappoint.
LATISM organizers made it possible to keep all movers and shakers in the digital industry together at Disney’s Coronado Resort. The hotels Spanish colonial themed convention resort was a perfect fit for accenting our celebration of Latino culture.
The event was kicked off with a motivational welcome speech by LATISM founder and leader, Ana Roca. Ana is a caring, nurturing and down-to-earth soul who has a strong passion for supporting the advancement of Latino communities. She inspired us with words of wisdom and applauded all the selected top Latino Digital Influencers in attendance before preparation of this year’s most anticipated event.
As a second-time honored selectee of one of the top Latino Digital Influencers, I was excited to reunite with old friends and meet many of the new talented influencers this year.
Highlights this year included meeting Disney’s newest and latest addition to the princess gallery: Princess Elena of Avalor. A confident Latina princess who is sharp, quick-witted, and adventurous - she boldly defends her nation against evil sorcery.
During one of LATISM’s receptions, Johnson & Johnson introduced us to their latest initiative, “Love Has No Labels.” A video starring John Cena and his inspirational words for encouraging us all to embrace diversity is one you will not want to miss. If you want to share how your love has no labels, post your pictures on social media using the hashtags: #WeAreAmerica or #LoveHasNoLabels.
This year’s event served as a strong platform for inviting attendees to join the Latino Vote movement, sparked by this historically important election year.
Attending the conference tracks featuring expert speakers on various topics was especially a treat. Especially those presented by fellow influencers. I happen to know the four who shared their journey from successful bloggers to published authors.
Words can’t describe the connections made, the friendships created, and the ingenuity for ideas spawned by the inspiring women and men I had the privilege of meeting. However, there were unexpected surprises. LATISM is an organization that promotes civic engagement, but it also highlights the importance of inclusion and how to make the seemingly impossible - possible. I couldn’t have been more motivated to work harder than the moment Mr. Tony Melendez sang on stage while playing the guitar with his feet. Mr. Melendez was born with no arms, but that didn’t stop him from starting a family, or traveling the world as he became one of the most uniquely inspiring musicians today. Having the opportunity to meet and speak with him about his journey was truly one the greatest highlights of my week.
There were far too many highlights to list them all. My entire experience was exciting, amazingly productive, encouraging, and helped generate thought provoking ideas for how I can take my advocacy efforts to the next level. LATISM is about cultivating relationships that help us to move forward in creating the positive change we want to see in the world today. After this year’s event, we are all well on our way.
© 2016 Sensory Friends
Author: Christine Goulbourne