Latino GLBT History Project Elects Executive Officers

Washington, D.C. December 12, 2015 – The Latino GLBT History Project (LHP) board of directors held its annual planning retreat and elected new executive officers. On March 21st, Jose L. Plaza was elected was as LHP president and will continue in this roll. For 2016, the LHP executive committee will include: Vice President is Cristela Solorio Ruiz, Secretary Eric Perez, and Treasurer Nancy Cañas. At LHP's October 29th board meeting, the following new board members were elected for 2 year terms: Nancy Cañas, Fernando Herrera, Eric Palladini, and Cristina Calvillo-Rivera. Founder Jose Gutierrez will continue to serve on the board of directors. Immediate past president David M. Pérez ends his board member term on December 31, 2015 and will dedicate his time to serve as the chair of the Advisory Committee to the Mayor's Office of LGBTQ Affairs for the District of Columbia.


Born in Guanajuato, Mexico, Jose L. Plaza is the proud son of migrant farm workers. He is a doctoral candidate at the University of Southern California, earned a M.Sc. in counseling from California State University, Long Beach, and his BA from San Diego State University. Jose is the National Director for Latino Engagement for Enroll America and is an Associate Board Member for the Latin American Youth Center. He joined the Latino GLBT History Project board of directors in 2013 and co-chaired the 7th Annual DC Latino Pride in 2013. 

Cristela Solorio Ruiz, is originally from California and moved to Washington, DC for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. Cristela has a passion for advocacy, empowerment and building a more inclusive LGBT community. Cristela has served on the planning committee for the successful Women’s History Month celebration, Mujeres en el Movimiento and in Connecticut promoted affordable health care education and awareness.

Nancy Cañas began her volunteer service with the Latino GLBT History Project as Miss Latino GLBT History Project in 2013. Nancy lead the way for equality through participation in the marriage equality rallies at the Supreme Court in March and the immigration rally in April. Nancy has played an active role in the DC Latino Pride Planning Committee on the outreach and Fiesta talent committees. Nancy has served as treasurer of the DC Gurly Show. Nancy is a mother of beautiful children.

Eric Perez, works as a case manager at Casa Ruby and youth leader at ¡Empodérate! Youth Center at La Clínica Del Pueblo. Eric formerly worked at The DC Center for the LGBT Community as coordinator for the Center Military and Center Latino programs. He is an Army combat veteran from the Bronx New York. He passions include supporting LGBT veterans, military service members, their families, undocumented youth, and the Latino community.

Other board members include resource development committee co-chair Fernando Herrera, historian Eric Palladini, health advocate Cristina Calvillo-Rivera, founder Jose Gutierrez, May Sifuentes of Planned Parenthood Federation of America; Jennifer Sanchez, veteran and Schedule C appointee for the Obama Administration.

"The Latino GLBT History Project will continue its signature events in 2016, including the 5th Annual Mujeres en el Movimiento Awards, 10th Annual DC Latino Pride, and 11th Annual Hispanic LGBTQ Heritage Awards. LHP will also expand opportunities for the public to interact with the LHP archives collection through a series of 3 "pop up" history events focusing on topics such as HIV, transgender, youth, and immigrant issues relating to the LGBTQ Latino/a community in metropolitan Washington, DC. LHP will also engage youth volunteers in it's bilingual oral history project launching in 2016. We invite all community members to join LHP in 2016," said president Jose L. Plaza.

To become a volunteer or join the 2016 steering committee contact Secretary Eric Perez at jose.eric.perez@gmail.com. To apply for the board of directors contact President Jose L. Plaza at plaza.jl@gmail.com or 619-341-9181.

The LHP 2015-2016 Royal Court members are Imaya Gabriela Garcia, Miss Latino GLBT History Project Trans 2015-16; Carlos Padilla, Mr. Latino GLBT History Project 2015-16; Emily Morazán, Miss Latino GLBT History Project 2015-16; and Alessandra Conde, Miss Latino GLBT History Project Drag 2015-16 who represent transgender, gay, and lesbian Latinas/os who have given volunteer service to the metro DC community and commit to represent LHP in media interviews, community events, and recruit volunteers for LHP over the next year. 
    The Latino GLBT History Project (LHP) is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization founded in April 2000 to investigate, collect, preserve and educate the public about the history, culture, heritage, arts, social and rich contributions of the Latino GLBT community in metropolitan Washington, D.C. To accomplish our mission, the LHP creates educational exhibits from our historical archives collection showcased at cultural events such as, a Women’s History Month Reception, a Hispanic LGBTQ Heritage Reception, DC Latino Pride, educational presentations at local and national conferences, and through our online virtual museum at www.LatinoGLBTHistory.org.

    Contact: Jose L. Plaza
    Email: plaza.jl@gmail.com  
    Phone: (619) 341-9181