Date ArticleType
2/20/2012 Press Release
AZHCC Hosts Business Symposium: May 4-5, 2012 [DATOS, Black & White Ball & Business Awards AND More!]


Feb. 20, 2012

Arizona Hispanic Chamber hosts groundbreaking business symposium, May 4-5

“Transforming Arizona’s Economy” business symposium to feature DATOS luncheon, community town hall and the state’s longest-running formal gala


CONTACT:  James E. Garcia, 602-294-6086 or Headshots of key speakers available upon request

PHOENIX (Feb. 20, 2012) –- Spotlighting the skyrocketing growth of the state’s Latino consumer base, the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce will host “Transforming Arizona’s Economy”, a groundbreaking business symposium, at the Phoenix Convention Center, May 4-5.

The event’s schedule of workshops, seminars and presentations will focus on the historic and growing impact of Latino-owned businesses and consumers statewide and across the nation.

“The future of our economy in Arizona or nationwide depends more every day on the economic vitality of the Latino community,” said Gonzalo de la Melena. “This first-of-its-kind symposium intends to zero in on education the world on the assets our community brings to the table and why all Arizonans should care.”

The two-day event will feature the release of the Chamber’s 16th annual, DATOS: Focus on the Hispanic Market; workshops and seminars; a community town hall, a film screening, and the 54th Annual Black & White Ball and Business Awards. More than  2,500 people attendees are expected to participate in the event, the largest gathering of Latino community and business leaders in the state.

“Our state’s economy is on a recovery track,” said AZHCC Board Chairman Tony Astorga, “and the community’s corporate and political leadership should know that achieving a strong recovery will require a better understanding of the impact of Latino business community and our population’s growing buying power.”

Designated as an Official Arizona Centennial event, the symposium will highlight the historical legacy of Arizona’s Latino community.

Latino consumers purchase an estimated $40 billion in good and services in Arizona every year. Nationwide, Latinos account for $1 Trillion in total annual purchasing power and experts say that figure could increase 50 percent in the next five years.

The Southwest is in the midst of an unprecedented cultural, demographic and economic shift. In cities such as Phoenix, San Antonio, Albuquerque and Los Angeles, local combined minority communities account for a majority of the population in those cities. In one decade, Phoenix will be majority Latino. In one generation, Arizona will be majority Latino state. Most of this extraordinary change is driven by the fast-expanding Latino business and consumer market. U.S. Census figures show Arizona’s Latino population grew 46 percent since 2000; Texas, 42 percent; New Mexico, 25 percent; and California, 28 percent.

Transforming Arizona’s Economy / Schedule of Events


DAY 1 / MAY 4



(workshops designed to support small business growth and sustainability, 300-400 attendees)


            7:30 to 8:30 a.m. (nationally renowned book author)

            8:45 to 9:45 a.m. (2 concurrent workshops)

            10:00 to 11:00 a.m. (2 concurrent workshops)


16th Annual DATOS: Focus On the Hispanic Market Luncheon

(a broad and detailed overview of Arizona’s fast-growing Latino market, 800-1,000 attendees)


            11:00-11:30 a.m. Registration

            11:30-1:30 p.m.   DATOS presentation



2:00 – 3:30 p.m. – Town Hall presentation


DAY 2 / MAY 5           

The 54th Annual Black & White Ball and Business Awards

Arizona Latinos: Our 100-Year Legacy


6:30 to 7: 30 p.m. - Registration

7:30 to 9:30 p.m. – Business Awards Ceremony, Scholarship Fundraiser, a Centennial Salute

DATOS Report

The Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce kicks off the symposium with the release of its 16th DATOS report at a noon luncheon on May 4. The exhaustive study offers a detailed overview of the latest trends shaping the state and national Hispanic consumer market. This year, the report’s research was compiled by a diverse editorial team of experts on consumer and economic trends. (A related study entitled DATOS USA that provides a national overview of the growing Hispanic consumer and business market also is under development.)

Business Workshops, Town Hall

The first day of the symposium also features a series of workshops, seminars and panel discussions on pressing issues impacting small and large businesses and the Latino consumers today. Proposed panels will focus no news business startups, business negotiation techniques, franchising opportunities and advice on how to survive the recovering economy.

The Chamber also is organizing a community town hall May 4 at 2 p.m. The town hall is scheduled for 2 p.m. on May 4 and is free and open to the public.

Business awards gala

The two-day symposium will be crowned by the 54th Annual Black & White Ball and Business Awards in the Phoenix Convention Center. More than 1,500 people are expected to attend the formal event – the longest running gala in the state.

A black-tie affair, the annual Black & White Ball is the largest event of its kind in the state with live entertainment, fine dining and the always highly anticipated presentation of the AZHCC’s Man, Woman, Entrepreneur and Corporation of the Year Awards, as well as our coveted Legacy Award. Past recipients of the Legacy Award include: Gov. Janet Napolitano, business leader Jerry Colangelo, U.S. Sen. John McCain, and Arizona’s only ever Hispanic Gov. Raul H. Castro.

About the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (AZHCC) - The AZHCC is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the efforts of the local business community, especially small business owners. Furthermore, the AZHCC provides a voice for Hispanic businesses in the Valley through advocacy efforts at the local, state and national level.

For information about purchasing individual tickets or table(s) for the DATOS luncheon or Black & White Ball and Business Awards please contact Norma Macias at 602.294.6081 or