Posted by: gmontealegre | February 21, 2015

Friends of HRIC to honor Community Leaders at May 14 gala

The Friends of the Hispanic Research & Information Center will honor community leaders with the Maria de Castro Blake Community Service Award at its fundraiser on Thursday, May 14, 2015 at the Mayfair Farms in West Orange.

Carlos A. Medina, Esq., Chair of the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of NJ (SHCCNJ) and Grizel Ubarry, Consultant on Urban and Economic Development both will receive the award for their dedication and outstanding service to the community.

CARLOS_MEDINA Carlos A. Medina, Esq., president of Robinson Aerial Surveys, Inc., in Hackettstown leads the largest Hispanic chamber of commerce in New Jersey representing over 68,377 latino businesses that contribute an estimated $10.1B to the economy.  His mission is to assist Latino Business continued growth and to encourage a commitment to diversity at companies throughout New Jersey. In his short term following the death of its founder Daniel Jara in 2013, Mr. Medina has continued the growth of the organization fostering partnerships with major New Jersey entities to bring additional visibility to Latino businesses.

grizelGrizzle Ubarry, CEO and Founder of President G.Ubarry Inc since 1985, is a consultant specializing in Nonprofit Management & Community Development in the areas of affordable housing and successful community revitalization projects.  She also serves as a coach to executives and Board of Directors who are retooling their organizations or experiencing transition.

About Friends of HRIC

The Friends of HRIC is a group of community volunteers founded by Professor Emeritus, Author and Historian Olga Jimenez de Wagenheim, who together with Ingrid Betancourt created the Hispanic Research and Information Center at the Newark Public Library.  The Hispanic Research and Information Center (HRIC) is a resource for the community and scholars seeking to learn about Latinos in NJ. The Center has created an Archive of Puerto Rican History with a current collection of approximately 50 biographical documents of prominent Puerto Rican pioneers of New Jersey.  The archival documents feature the  personal papers, mementos, photos, newspapers articles, and all that tells the history of the featured leader.  The Collections are available for viewing at the Newark Public Library at  5 Washington Street, Newark, NJ.  to contact the FHRIC email

About Maria de Castro Blake

Maria de Castro Blake was an organizer, community advocate and pioneer.  She began her career in New York City and moved to New Jersey to raise her family and to work at Rutgers University.  While there she advocated for free breakfast and medical exams for children.  After her appointment to Assistant Dean in 1965 –  she soon began making the case for Latino students to study at Rutgers.  She served the community until her retirement in 1984.  She moved back to New York City where she volunteered at the New York City Library until her death in 2001.

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