Q&A: HPRA members of the month Zayda Rivera of Lagrant Communications and Pamela Corante-Hansen of Letra Nova

Hispanic PRofile: Zayda Rivera

What do you enjoy about PR in your line of work?
I enjoy what I do because I feel like I’m truly making a difference in the world. My client is the largest health and health care philanthropy in the U.S. and I promote their programs and studies that impact the Latino communities in this country. I share information about how to make our communities healthier, more sustainable places to live and raise our children. For that, I feel I’m doing my part to create a brighter tomorrow.

What is something not many people know about you? 

Not many people know about my deep devotion to practicing yoga and meditation. It keeps me healthy, focused and I have a deeper appreciation for day-to-day life. I’ve practiced now for about 2 1/2 years and my goal is to one day become a certified instructor so I can share the benefits yoga and meditation have provided in my life with others.



What is the best advice you have ever received in your professional career?
The best advice I ever received in my professional career was to take ownership of everything I do. Don’t blame someone else for an unsuccessful event or lack of coverage for something you’re pitching to media. Learn from it and make note of what needs to be changed moving forward so that you have more successful events and a lot of media pick up when pitching. If you approach your career and everyday work this way you will put more focus and passion into everything you do and it shows!



What advice can you provide to the incoming generation of Hispanic PR professionals?
Master your craft! Just like a professional athlete needs to train and work hard to be the best when its game time, we as PR professionals need to do the same. Don’t stop learning after you’ve received your degree. Take workshops and attend networking events to continuously grow and advance in your career. I’m a student of life who never stops learning from the people and places I come across in my journey. It’s not only made me a better Latina professional and mother but a better person as a whole.




Hispanic PRofile: Pamela Corante-Hansen
, Owner
  Letra Nova Communications
, L.A. Chapter

What do you enjoy about PR in your line of work?

I love the problem-solving aspect of my career. As a consultant, my clients come to me for solutions to their short- and long-term communication needs. Because of the rise in social media and mobile communications, my tool kit keeps growing, which enables me to present a more complete and innovative portfolio of options.

What is something not many people know about you?

I spent the summer before I finished college in Geneva, Switzerland as a marketing intern for a Swiss retailer. This company had launched its own version of the Swatch watch (it was the 80s!), and one day a well-dressed gentleman approached me and asked about the watches. So I gave him my best pitch about the virtues of the watch, and he seemed intrigued but didn’t make a purchase. I was crushed. Later I found out he was the vice president of the company and that he had told my store manager that he was impressed with the American selling Swiss watches to the Swiss.

What is the best advice you have ever received in your professional career?

Do what you love. It sounds really simple, but I fully subscribe to the philosophy that life is too short not to be following your passion. The beauty of public relations is that you can represent virtually any industry or topic in existence and the discipline itself is so varied that your choices are infinite.

What advice can you provide to the incoming generation of Hispanic PR professionals?
It’s related to the advice I received, and that is to follow your heart. Worry less about the money – that will come. Make it your goal to be where your passions are. Whether you love sports, food, music, or technology, find out which PR firms or practitioners represent companies or associations related to your own personal interests, and send an email introducing yourself and asking for a brief informational interview in person or on the phone. If you’re strategic about it, each connection you make brings you closer to your ideal career.