Helen Trinidad is Vice President/COO of the National Hispanic Corporate Council. She joined the staff of NHCC in January, 2003 after retiring Helen Trinidad - NHCC from US Airways.  As Vice President/COO, Trinidad is in charge of the day to day operations of the headquarters office in Arlington, Virginia.

What is the National Hispanic Corporate Council and what makes your organization unique compared to other Hispanic business professionals groups?

With offices in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, NHCC, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, was established in 1985 by a group of Fortune 500 executives.  These corporate leaders saw a need to develop a Hispanic market information network to share best practice information among major U.S. companies.  NHCC’s purpose is to provide its member corporations the resources, market intelligence, collective expertise, education and counsel to implement proven strategies for reaching the Hispanic community externally and leveraging Hispanic talent internally.

NHCC is a unique membership organization comprised of Fortune 1000 corporations providing leading-edge corporate best practices, research and network opportunities for the benefit of its corporate members.  NHCC is the premier resource on effectively maximizing the Hispanic Market opportunity through marketing, community relations, human resources, and procurement within the foundation of corporate social responsibility.

What are the primary value propositions you have to offer prospective member companies?

With a proven track record of 25 years in service to corporate America, NHCC offers a variety of information sharing formats: advanced topic-focused member meetings, think tanks, webinars, CEO forums, functional interest networks, proprietary research and customized consultations. Corporations seeking a strong return on investment, look to NHCC as their first resource in maximizing the Hispanic market opportunity.

Corporate membership in NHCC provides best practice information by subject matter experts in corporate America, such as Workforce Diversity, Multicultural Marketing, Community Relations, Supplier Diversity and Corporate Social Responsibility for the benefit of our corporate members.

How have you benefitted from being located in the vicinity of Washington, DC?

Having an office in DC has increased awareness of NHCC among community based organizations headquartered here.  While our offices are located in the Washington, DC area, our conferences are held at the corporate offices of our member corporations. We have been fortunate to have companies such as Sprint; Hallmark Cards, Inc.; Hyatt; State Farm; Wal-Mart and Wells Fargo sponsor and host our meetings.

How is the NHCC involved in bettering the lives of Latinos?  Do you have any specific programs that help our country’s Hispanic community?

NHCC provides professional development and networking opportunities to corporate executives representing our member companies. At our member meetings, corporate practitioners and subject matter experts share leading edge best practices as they pertain to the Hispanic community.

What is the biggest challenge your organization’s faced in light of the battered economy and how are you coping?

Like all non-profits, the economy has had a definite impact on NHCC. Creative fund raising and implementation of cost saving measures has become a dual priority going forward.

Your longtime executive director Carlos Soto is just a few months from officially retiring.  How is the NHCC evolving post Carlos Soto as you embark on your next 25 years?

During the first 25 years the NHCC has helped Corporate America identify the opportunity and best practices for recognizing and serving the needs of this emerging, exploding, market. The NHCC brought together subject matter experts and best- in-class practitioners who in the safe environment of the NHCC could share insights to improve the “whole.” Member companies identified common needs and goals and used the NHCC network to find solutions and improve their speed to market or in solving concerns. They helped each other, the member representative, to move agendas affecting the Hispanic community’s needs in relation to the products and services of the Fortune 1000. They helped thought leaders gain access to board rooms in pursuit of transferring knowledge to senior corporate leaders.

In the next 25 years the NHCC, “founded by corporate America for corporate America”, will help the Fortune 1000 maximize the opportunities of the U.S. Hispanic market and its economic influence beyond the U.S. The NHCC will leverage its historic and unique position of serving the Fortune 1000 from within, versus challenging the Fortune 1000 from the outside.  It will continue to listen to the issues from corporate executives and non-profits to develop agendas that improve market performance and create shareholder equity. It will help corporate America populate experts and thought leaders amongst its ranks by supporting leadership development. The NHCC will help corporate America “speak to its markets versus at its markets” by understanding the power of difference, cultural difference. At our 50th anniversary we will be joined by 50 Fortune 1000 CEO’s who consider themselves ethnically Hispanic. They will be market leaders across all markets. They will be recognized for serving the unique needs of people and communities regardless of race or ethnicity.

How can companies or individuals become involved in the NHCC?
NHCC membership is open to Fortune 1000 and S&P 500 companies.  Many of the benefits of membership have been outlined above. NHCC is holding its Fall Member Meeting Oct. 21-23, in San Francisco.   A representative from a non-member Fortune 1000 or  S&P corporation is extended an invitation to attend.  NHCC will waive the registration fee ($2,600 value).  The member meeting includes a Think Tank on “Engaging Latinos through Social Media” sponsored by Aramark, Oct. 21, 2009,  and will take place at UCSF Mission Bay Conference Center. The Member Meeting (Oct. 22-23) focusing on “Evolving the Hispanic Paradigm: Leveraging Workforce and Supplier Diversity” will be held at Wells Fargo headquarters. Visit www.nhcchq.org  for complete agenda and membership application. Contact Helen Trinidad at htrinidad@nhcchq.org  or phone 703-807-5137 for additional information or with any questions.

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