National Association of Hispanic Publications (NAHP) President and Teleguia Publisher Zeke Montes passed away earlier today, according to Montes’ best friend Kirk Whisler, founder of the NAHP and president of the Latino Print Network. A cause of death has not been revealed at this time.
Montes, or “Zeke” as he was affectionately known, was a six-time president of the NAHP and led it through some of the association’s most storied years. He was on the second year of his final two year term when he passed away.
“While others have devoted meaningful time to the NAHP and the development of Hispanic Print – Zeke devoted his life. Right up to going to the hospital for the final time Zeke was concerned about keeping Hispanic Print and the NAHP growing and moving in the right direction,” wrote Whisler on a newsletter post.
“Zeke Montes was in many ways my favorite Latino publisher but I am biased because he took me under his wing when I was just starting out in Hispanic media and he helped me learn the lay of the Latino media world,” Manny Ruiz, publisher of the Hispanic PR Blog and founder of the Hispanicize event. “Every chance he had Zeke would go out of his way to introduce me to brands, publishers and people. From the first moment he always treated me as family and for that I am eternally grateful.”
Montes was elected as the NAHP President for the first time in 1986 and among his many accomplishments are the NAHP joining HACR and other key national organizations, the growth of the NAHP Group Buy program, the start of what is today the José Martí Awards, the NAHP scholarships, and the first convention to take place in Mexico.
Zeke is survived by his wife Rose and his children Chrissy, Patricia, Steve, and Eddie. Funeral arrangements are pending and a fund is being organized to help the family pay for his medical expenses.