Chamber to recognize 3 individuals at their gala partnered with the Pennsylvania Latino Convention on September 30, 2022, at Miller Symphony Hall.
Monday, September 26, 2022 – LEHIGH VALLEY, PA – The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of the Lehigh Valley presents the Annual Gala in partnership with the PA Latino Convention on Friday, September 30 at Miller Symphony Hall, Downtown Allentown in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 – October 15). The Hispanic Chamber is happy to welcome the PA Latino Convention (3-day event https://www.palatinoconvention.com) to Allentown and to partner with them for this one portion of their convention.
The Hispanic Chamber Annual Gala and Awards Reception is held in appreciation and in celebration of the community’s Hispanic entrepreneurs and executives. This year’s unique Gala begins the evening at Miller Symphony Hall with the presentation of the Hispanic Chamber’s “Rising Entrepreneur Award” and the “Community Partner Award,” along with the PA Latino Convention’s “Power 100 Awards,” a “Who’s Who in PA.”
The Hispanic Chamber Rising Entrepreneur Award is given to an individual who is an ambitious leader under 30, who is building and sustaining a successful and dynamic business. This year’s recipient is D’Anthony Santiago, who is a Lehigh Valley native raised in Bethlehem, PA and recently graduated from Bethlehem Catholic 2022.
Santiago a Latino entrepreneur who believes in working smart and investing into his businesses. Although he’s young, he surrounds himself with wise counsel from successful leaders which has propelled his business to success. He always had a passion for sneaker culture and fashion. He attributes his love for sneakers to his father Danny Santiago, an Army Veteran from the Lehigh Valley. He recalls the excitement on Saturday mornings to go buy the latest Lebron’s or Jordan’s. Fast forward to today he is now the owner of SNKR BOX LV a boutique in Easton, PA entering its second year in business and has fast tracked its success. He’s currently a student at Northampton Community College while scaling his business. His goal is to eventually replicate his model in other cities while expanding into other business ventures like real estate. He hopes that he can be a role model amongst his peers and will influence them to have dreams, persevere, and work hard. He’s grateful for every opportunity and believes if he stays humble and hungry, he can continue to accomplish his dreams.
The Hispanic Chamber Community Partner Award is given to an individual that has demonstrated a long-standing dedication to the improvement of the community. They emanate a work ethic and a selflessness that further pushes them toward the collective goal, which is improving our community. The 2022 Hispanic Chamber Community Partner Award will be presented to Flor and Robert Vélez.
Flor M. Vélez Del Valle is the Founder and President of the Puerto Rican Culture Preservation Inc. (PRCP).
She is also a Pennsylvania community organizer for Puerto Rico’s Hurricane Maria as a PRCP chapter. Born in Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, she has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. In 2009, she moved to Allentown start a Real State business and married to Roberto Velez. For the past 11 years, Flor has been the President of PRCP, a 501c3 non-profit organization in Allentown.
She worked as a manufacturing and packaging supervisor for Warner Lamber and Pfizer pharmaceutical companies in Puerto Rico for twenty-four years. Her priorities are her family, the Puerto Rican community by maintaining a connection to the island’s heritage through PRCP, serving the community as a leader.
Robert Vélez was born and raised in Jersey City, N.J. In 1991, he moved and made his home in Allentown, Pa. He was employed by Hudson County, N.J. as a High-Pressure Boiler Operator for 32 years (28 yrs he commuted from Allentown to Secaucus, N.J.). In 2010 Robert and Flor, his spouse, started to invest into rental properties in Allentown, which he continues to manage.
In 2012 started working for Puerto Rican Culture Preservation (PRCP), a 501c3 non-profit organization since 2011. Robert has been the Public Relations representative since he began. His position demands he wears many different hats. He also serves as the technical coordinator at all PRCP events. Through his work in PRCP (which includes teaching and performing Bomba drumming with his wife Flor Velez ) he can see the potential of his community. PRCP produces and coordinates the annual Puerto Rican parade and festival, the Lehigh Valley Children’s Festival, the Leadership Coronation workshops, the Back to School Block Party and collaborates with other nonprofit organizations and the city of Allentown. It is through these events and collaborations he can be an active part of PRCP’s mission to teach, educate and unite our community.
Robert believes you have to know where you are from to know where you are going. He is devoted to the community especially the children. He believes by teaching, guiding, and investing time in our children we are building a solid foundation for our future leaders.
About the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of the Lehigh Valley
The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of the Lehigh Valley’s mission is to support, strengthen, and raise awareness of all the business community by focusing on: Advocacy, Business, and Community Development.
About the Chamber:
The Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce’s mission is to serve as the voice for business by continuously improving the economic climate and creating growth opportunities for the Greater Lehigh Valley region. We accomplish this through business-to-business networking events and marketing products, affinity programs and exclusive, money saving member benefits, training programs, government affairs initiatives and public policy advocacy, and community development enterprises. With nearly 5,000 members who employ more than 200,000 individuals, The Chamber is the largest in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, and in the top ten nationwide.
Information provided to TVL by:
Executive Vice President, Diversity Councils