Edwin Escobar is founder of Nabla, a construction management group of companies that currently serves multinational companies in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua. He served as dean of the engineering school at Rafael Landívar University, his alma mater, where he helped to establish a world-class technological center for academics, research, and development. He was founder and president of the Youth Entrepreneur Organization-Guatemala chapter and was key in jumpstarting Students in Free Enterprise-Guatemala. Edwin has served on the board of ANACOVI, the national homebuilders association, and is a member of FUNDESA, an economic nonprofit. He holds an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University, where received the Dean’s Service Award. He also holds an industrial engineering degree from Rafael Landívar University in Guatemala, where he was also president of the Students Association. He completed a program called the Birthing of Giants 2004, by MIT and YEO at Endicott House executive campus. He is a Fellow of the inaugural class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Eida Gabriela Saiz
Eida Gabriela Saiz: Treasury and Finance Manager, Autoridad del Canal de Panama, where she is responsible for overseeing financial investment opportunities for the financial sources of ACP – Panama’s most important public corporation, currently engaging in the execution of the Expansion of the Panama Canal. She led the contracting of the external financing sources for the Expansion Program for US$2,300 million through the negotiation with five international development agencies. Prior joining ACP, she was Deputy Director of Public Credit for the Republic of Panama. Earned an M.B.A from INCAE Business School, and Nova Southeastern University and B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin. Gabriela is a Fellow of the Central America Leadership Initiative and the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Elizabeth is currently a partner at Lopez, Villanueva & Huertematte (LOVILL) Attorneys at Law, named by Chambers and Partners as a Leading Firm in Latin America. She is a Board member and shareholder of Lovill Assets S.A., a corporate services company, and Lovill Trust, S.A., a trust and estate services company. She is also a member of the International Bar Association and the Panamanian Bar Association. She began her career as a lawyer at Morgan & Morgan, Attorneys at Law, as an Associate, from 2006-2011. She is Chairman of the Board of G.H. Management (Equity Fund with investments in real estate and financial products in Panama and abroad), Chairman of the Board of Hacienda San Jose, S.A., a 7,000 acre cattle ranch, agricultural and forestry operation in Pacora, Panama, Owner and Director of Campo Marzio Design Panama and brand representative in Panama (retail), Member of the Board of Directors of Sunstar Development, S.A., (Sheraton Bijao Hotel) and Metropolitan Hotels S.A., (Hilton Garden Inn Panama City), Member of the Board of ADESVA, a nonprofit organization working for the sustainable development of El Valle de Anton, Member of the Board of the Contemporary Museum of Panama (MAC), and Chairman of Fundación Heurtematte, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting the arts, education and social support to underprivileged communities in Panama, and most recently, a Founding Member and Board Member of Women Corporate Directors, Panama Chapter. She has a B.A. in International Affairs and Latin American Studies of Georgetown University, Washington D.C., with concentrations in East Asian Studies, International Development and International Politics. Elizabeth has also a Minor in History, Summa Cum Laude and Distinguished Scholar, of Elliott School of International Affairs. She has a Juris Doctor from Northwestern University School of Law, Chicago, a B.A. in Law form Columbus Univsersity, Panama City, Panama, and a LLM in Law and Management from INIDEM Business Law School, Panama City, Panama. She is a recipient of the Presidential Scholarship, a member of Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Golden Key International Honor Society and Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society.
is vice-president and managing director of Cuatro M Cafes, an agro-industrial organization based out of El Salvador, which together with three other sister companies in the United States and another one in El Salvador run a vertical integrated coffee business. He currently holds the second vice-chair position in the Roasters Guild, a trade guild of the Specialty Coffee Association of America. In 2008, Emilio earned his master’s degree in business administration from INCAE Business School. Having lived in Portland, Oregon, from 1997 to 2001, where he got his Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Portland, he was able to discover and live around a culture where the processing of coffee, beer, wine and food is treated as a craft. With that mind set, Emilio went back to his hometown, and founded Cuatro M Cafes, the most innovated, efficient and modern coffee operation in the country. Emilio, a seventh generation farmer, began his journey in coffee in 2001 when he began farming, processing and roasting his own beans to find new global markets for them. Currently Cuatro M Cafes processes coffees from 19 different farms in the country, and distributes them directly traded in 14 countries, to 45 different roasters who demand the highest quality Salvadoran beans. He is a Fellow of class eleven of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Program.
Emin Jorge Abufele
is President of Sociedad Eléctrica Mesoamericana, S.A. (SEMSA). As President of SEMSA, Emin defines future developments and investments of the Company in renewable energies and represents the company in policy matters affecting the renewable energy sector. Before founding SEMSA, Emin was General Manager for sixteen years of IMSA, a wheat and corn flour mill located in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, which is among the top five flour mills in Central America. Additionally, Emin currently occupies the Board of Directors of Hermacasa (a steel file manufacturing company with sales in the USA and Central America). He is currently the Treasurer of Nutrehogar, a non for profit organization that houses and cares for mal nourished children ages 6 months – 6 years old, a Board Director of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Cortes, as well as of the National Association of Industry of Honduras. Emin earned his Management Engineering degree from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, Massachusetts. Emin is a Fellow of the Central America Leadership Initiative and the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Como parte de su formación universitaria es graduado con alta distinción de Máster en Administración Pública en la Kennedy School de la Universidad de Harvard (2001). Obtuvo también el Máster en Administración de Empresas en INCAE Costa Rica (1995) con Alta Distinción y se graduó Summa Cum Laude como Economista de la Universidad Francisco Marroquín.
Cuenta con amplia experiencia pública y privada en el área de la competitividad y el desarrollo sostenible. En 1997 fundó y fue el primer Director Ejecutivo del Programa Nacional de Competitividad PRONACOM. Del 2004 al 2007 fue Comisionado Presidencial Adjunto para la Promoción de Inversión, la Agenda de Competitividad y el Plan Puebla Panamá –PPP-. Fundó y creó la Agencia de Promoción de Inversiones “Invest in Guatemala” en el 2004. Fue Diputado (2012-2016) periodo en el que fungió como Presidente de la Comisión de Economía y Vice-Presidente de la Comisión de Relaciones Exteriores del Congreso de la República de Guatemala.
Desde el 2014 funda y dirige el Instituto de Progreso Social de Guatemala – IPS – socio aliado del SOCIAL PROGRESS IMPERATIVE con sede en Washington D.C. y del Centro de Intercambio de Conocimientos de VIVA Trust y la Fundación AVINA con sede en Costa Rica.
Desde febrero de 2016 es nombrado Director por Guatemala en el Banco Centroamericano de Integración Económica –BCIE-
En el mundo empresarial ha sido Gerente General y Director de varias empresas familiares así como también es miembro activo y ha sido Coordinador del Capítulo de Guatemala del Consejo Empresario de América Latina –CEAL-. Desde el año 2001 funge como Vicepresidente del Comité Nacional de INCAE en Guatemala, es Presidente Fundador de la Asociación de Egresados de la Universidad de Harvard en Guatemala así como también es miembro activo de la Fundación para el Desarrollo –FUNDESA-, la Asociación de Gerentes de Guatemala –AGG- y de la Asociación Gremial de Exportadores de Guatemala –AGEXPORT-. Desde 2012 es socio del Club Rotario Guatemala del Este, fue por 10 años Consul Honorario de Nueva Zelandia en Guatemala y desde abril del 2016 es Consul Honorario de Jamaica en Guatemala.
En el ámbito académico, desde el año 1996 ha sido Catedrático de la Facultad de Economía y Administración de Empresas de la Universidad Francisco Marroquín. También fue investigador asociado del tanque de pensamiento CIEN – Centro de Investigaciones Económicas Nacionales- y fundador del Programa de Apoyo al Organismo Legislativo –PAL- en el período 1990-1993 y ha publicado en diversos medios de comunicación escrita artículos de opinión en materia de desarrollo sostenible y competitividad. Es fellow de la primera promoción de la iniciativa regional de liderazgo “CALI” promovida por el Aspen Institute y el INCAE. También ha cursado diversos diplomados en la ENA -Ecole Nationale d’Administration Publique- con sede en Paris en el 2012 y el 2014, en la Universidad de Boston en 2002, en la Fundación Friedrich Ebert en 1999, la Fundación Niemann en 1998 y el United States Information Agency en 1997 entre otros.
Enrique Arturo de Obarrio
Enrique Arturo de Obarrio is a founding partner of de Obarrio, Carles and Associates. Since he co-founded his practice, he has also been general counsel to Panama’s Superintendency of Banks and worked for the International Banking Center there. From 1990 to 1993 Enrique worked for the Organization of American States as political counselor and alternate ambassador of Panama. He is president of the board of directors of Elektra Panama, SA, counselor to the vice president of Banco Azteca for Latin America, founding vice president of the Organization of the Private Sector of the Americas, head representative of the NGO sector to Panama’s Consejo de la ConcertaciónNacionalpara el Desarrollo, alternate general coordinator of the Latin-American Network for Democracy, and founding member of Panama’s National Council for Ethical Culture. He presided over the United States-Panama Business Council Panama Chapter from 2007 until 2008 and the Panamanian Association of Business Executives from 2004 until 2006. He was the founding president of the National Center for Competitiveness, where he is also a trustee, and was the representative of the Panamanian private sector to the Mesoamerican Council for Competitiveness. He has been instrumental in passing the Panamanian Law on Transparency, the Panama Business Ethics Compact, the National Justice Compact, the Panama Canal expansion project, and the National Development Strategy for Panama. Enrique obtained his BA in law and political science from Universidad Santa Maria La Antigua, in Panama, in 1986; a year later, he did postgraduate studies in international and common law at the Georgetown University Law Center, in Washington, D.C. Enrique is fluent in English and Spanish and is married with three children. He is a Fellow of the second class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Director of the office of strategy management for the coffee division of EcomAgroindustrial Corporation, a private company dedicated to the origination, processing, and merchandising of agricultural commodities worldwide. He has held trading and management positions inside Ecom in New York, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Costa Rica. He has been responsible for the development of several public-private partnerships that have played a catalytic role in bringing large numbers of small farmers and large global buyers together. He has a BS in agricultural economics and finance from Cornell University and comes from a family tradition of farming both in Central America and in Southern France, with ownership interests in sustainable coffee, forestry and tourism small-to-medium enterprises. He is married to Carolina, a psychologist, and has three sons. He is a Fellow of the third class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Ernesto Baltodano is general manager of CISA AGRO, a Nicaraguan company dedicated to the import and distribution of agricultural inputs. Ernesto possesses more than 10 years of professional experience in the areas of marketing, finance and business administration both in the United States and Nicaragua. Besides his work commitments, he dedicates time to different private and social initiatives having been one of the founding members of the Digital Seeds Program now run by the Seeds for Progress Foundation, an initiative focused on improving the quality of primary level education in rural coffee regions. He is an active member of the Board of Directors for the Nicaraguan Union for Corporate Social Responsibility (UniRSE), is President of the Nicaraguan Association of Formulators and Distributors of Agrochemicals (ANIFODA), one of the business chambers belonging to COSEP where he was elected as one of the three Vice Presidents, and also serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the American Nicaraguan Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM). He holds an MBA from IE Business school in Spain and a bachelor’s degree in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania. Ernesto is married to his wife, Adriana, and is the proud father of two beautiful children, Marco Adrian and Giuliana. Ernesto is a Fellow of the fifteenth class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Esther Faskha Vugman
Esther Faskha is curently a motivational speaker working to break down the social barriers that limit the full integration of People with Disabilities into society. In 2018, Esther reinforced her message of “Finding beauty in diversity” by being the first person in a wheelchair to “walk” the runway at Panama Fashion Week, as well as being a featured “book” at the Human Library and a panelist at the Mujer, Made in Panama presentation. She shares her experiences at schools as well as homes for socially at-risk youth, raising awareness and advocating for inclusion with new generations.
Esther was the President of the Panama Paralympic Committee from 2015 until May, 2019 where she increased Panama’s participation at the international level from two to eight disciplines in just four short years. She has achieved many important firsts throughout her career. Under her leadership, Panama had, for the first time, eight athletes qualify and compete at the Para-Panamerican Games in Toronto in 2015 and two athletes qualify and compete at the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Under her direction, the Panamanian delegation won overall at the Para-Central American Games in Nicaragua in 2018 – another first.
Before this, Esther was Director of the Panamanian Wheelchair Sports Association (ASPADESDER) for eight years where she took wheelchair basketball teams to the Central American Games on several occasions, driving the formation of basketball teams in the country’s interior. She also formed the first national handball team to compete in international events.
She earned her bachelor’s degree in Marketing & Advertising in 2004 and a master’s in Executive Management in 2006 from the Universidad Latina de Panamá, and a postgraduate degree in Universal Accessibility in 2017 from the Universitat Internacional de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain.
is the Director of Transformando Conflictos Partners – El Salvador, a Salvadoran civil society organization dedicated to promoting a culture of dialogue, peace and democracy-building and a member of Partners for Democratic Change International in El Salvador. She has extensive experience in development, the Rule of Law and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), and youth crime and violence prevention in El Salvador. Between 2008 and 2012 she led efforts to introduce mediation in the criminal area with the Attorney General’s Office and provided consulting services to introduce court-annexed mediation centers in juvenile, criminal and family cases among others. She helped build public-private alliances that strengthened the mediation in forty public schools and in several universities, and promoted violence prevention through annual national campaigns. During the period of 1999-2006, while serving as the rule of law specialist for USAID/El Salvador, she supported the design and supervision, monitoring and evaluation of a national network of mediation centers within the Public Defender’s Office and some municipalities to provide access to justice, prevent violence and promote a culture of peace in El Salvador. Eva was trained as a lawyer in the Jesuit University of San Salvador, specializing in human rights and eventually in negotiation in De Paul University. Eva was awarded a Fulbright research grant regarding mediation education university based clinics in mediation based at George Washington University. She is a member and pro-bono advisor to many international initiatives and organizations such as OINA, GAJE and OAS.
VP of corporate development for ITS Infocom, a leading remote infrastructure management (RIM) and managed service company in the Americas. He is chairman of BioInnovar, an entrepreneurship center within the Costa Rican Biodiversity Institute, and an honorary member of the Omar Dengo Foundation for Education in Digital Technologies. He is a member of the Malta Order Association. He has completed the Chicago, New York, Berlin, and Washington DC International Marathons. Fabian has a degree from the Universidad de Costa Rica Law School and a MBA from INCAE Business School, where he did a semester abroad in Frankfurt, Germany. He also studied product development and innovation at MIT and financial instruments and markets at Harvard University. He lives in Dallas, Texas with his wife Mariela and his three children, Catalina, Fabian, and Julian. He is a Fellow of the third class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Fátima Patricia Mena Baide is currently the Chief of the anticorruption Party in Honduras. She discovered that the application of laws in her country was a big problem, and that corruption and impunity were taking many lives away, but most important, their peace. Because of this, she joined the Anticorruption Party as a Volunteer because she believed it was time to get involved in the changes and implement anticorruption policies. She coordinated first her neighborhood, then her city, her department, and finally made it to National Counsel. On the elections of November 2013, she was elected Congresswoman, as the most voted women in her department. She obtained her Law degree in Honduras while working for the Supreme Court, and in 2006 she obtained a Scholarship to get a Masters Degree in Justice Administration in the National University of Costa Rica (UNA).
is the CEO of Grupo ANC, a Latin American company dedicated to the leasing of vehicles and representative of the brands Enterprise, National and Alamo for Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Peru, recognized as the franchisee model for the region. His leadership has been essential to obtain great achievements: in 2002, it was the first car rental company in the world with ISO 9001/ISO 14001 certifications; in 2010, received the National Award of Excellence and in 2015, it was the first franchisee in Latin America to obtain the Enterprise brand. Currently Grupo ANC is one of the largest companies in Latin America with a fleet of four thousand vehicles. Since 2008, Federico is President of the Costa Rican Association of Car Rental Companies (ACAR) and member of the Board of Directors of the National Chamber of Tourism (CANATUR). In 1997, he earned his Business Administration degree at the University of Costa Rica thanks to an academic scholarship and in 1999, he received his MBA degree with honors at INCAE. Federico lives in Santa Ana, Costa Rica where he and Susana, his wife of 17 years have raised their children Julian and Fabiola. Federico is a Fellow of the 13th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Federico Cartín is cofounder of SUM Consulting -a boutique strategic, urban planning and management practice-. After ten years in Canada and having worked in academic, private and public sectors, Federico returned to his homeland to effect change in his home region. This led him to found Fundación Rutas Naturbanas aimed at creating shared-use paths and environmentally restoring 25 km of riverbanks in the capital region of San José. He is currently President and Director General of the initiative and is committed to fundraise over US$8 million to allow over one million people to walk, bike and roll throughout the five municipalities it connects. He’s been involved in LGBT activism in both Canada and Costa Rica. Because of his passion for innovation and impact, he was recognized as one of Greater Toronto’s 27 emerging leaders when selected as a DiverseCity Fellow by CivicAction GTA in 2013. Federico earned his bachelor in economics from Universidad Latina de Costa Rica and a Master’s in Urban Planning from McGill University, graduating as Class President and as a Centre for Developing Area Studies. Federico is a Fellow of the 12th class of the Central American Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Fredy Nasser is the Executive Vice President of UNO, member of Grupo Terra, a conglomerate of Central American and Colombian companies specialized in downstream oil businesses. Since 2006 Federico has achieved substantial growth for UNO, mostly through M&A s (Shell, Copena, Biomax) and solid partnerships with global players such as Philips, Shell and Puma (Trafigura). He has guided the company into a leading Central American and Colombian downstream oil conglomerate that imports and distributes oil derivatives through the largest network of retail sites and industrial clients in Central America (Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Costa Rica). Prior to his current position, he served as the Director of Finance and Director of Projects for Grupo Terra, where he successfully restructured Grupo Terras sources of funds and created value-adding projects. Federico obtained a degree in finance from Suffolk University.
Co-founder of Mobilize.Net/ArtinSoft and has been a leader in application legacy modernization for nearly 20 years. In addition to working on thousands of migration projects, Federico was product manager for the migration tools that shipped with multiple versions of Microsoft Visual Studio.NET. Federico has researched extensively into alternative ways of upgrading legacy applications. He is a regular presenter on legacy application migration at top technology events including Microsoft TechEd, Microsoft BUILD, VSLive! and others. He is also a prolific writer of many papers, articles, blog posts, and is co-author of a book on automatic software migration. With a technical background (Ph.D.c. from the University of Florida) combined with hands-on management in real world legacy migration projects, Federico is passionate about the intersection of the technical challenges and the business need for automated transformation.
is the Corporate Affairs Manager at the CASSA group (Salvadorian Sugar Company). Among her main responsibilities are the development of the sustainability strategy as well as the implementation of the social corporate responsibility program. In 2010 she was key to the creation of “CASSA- Hand in Hand with Your Community,” a program with the objective of building sustainable sugar cane communities. Since 2008 Fermina has participated in the activities of Centro Supérate CASSA where she provides education to young people. Before joining CASSA, she worked in a government social violence prevention program in high-risk communities, where she focused on the reintegration of former gang members into society. Cárdenas also acted as Press Coordinator during Francisco Flores’ presidency and in important media companies in El Salvador. She holds a B.A. in Journalism from the Universidad Centroamericana José Simeon Cañas and a master’s degree in Civil Society Engagement from Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona. She is a Fellow of the eighth class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Development Investment Banker with 25 years of international credit and investment experience and 15 years of direct experience assessing diversified renewable energy portfolios in Latin America & the Caribbean for more than $100MM consisting of more than 40 investments. His financial, credit and investment experience includes working with financing from IFC, IDB, Citibank, Finnfund, BIO, Triodos, CABEI, MIF, and several commercial banks in Central America.
He has participated in numerous syndicated credit and investment transactions for renewable energy projects. Mr. Alvarado led the creation, structuring, fundraising, legal closing and portfolio construction of the $17MM CAREC specialized renewable energy Venture Capital fund in Central America. Has 5 years of direct project development/construction experience in Honduras developing in depth understanding of all legal, regulatory and market aspects that govern the energy sector in the country and assets of $100MM+. Until December 2014, F. Alvarado formed part of the Flex Energy Group, developing generation assets in Honduras and Costa Rica; since then, Mr. Alvarado has no business relationship with that group. Mr. Alvarado has held board seats in several Central American companies mostly working in the energy sector, as well as for a US company in the bathing industry. His international work experience includes opening a renewable energy investment office in Brazil, as a branch of a regional investment operation. High-level consultant on financial mechanisms for energy markets and investment portfolios has performed studies and consultancies for USAID, IDB, MIF, World Bank, USAID, Enclude, HIVOS, etc.
In 2012, he launched the Private Financing Advisory Network program in Central America and the Caribbean, sponsored by USAID, first as Regional Director and more recently working as mentor of clean energy enterprises. He authored a training course for bankers and financiers on the assessment of hydroelectric projects that provided capacity building and investment skills for more than 50 bank officers in 5 countries in Central America and in 1 country in Africa. Between 2001-2005, during his initial tenure at E+Co he worked as program lead manager of the USAID-sponsored Financing of Renewable Energy Enterprises in Central America (FENERCA), identifying a pipeline of more than 20 renewable energy projects, arranging financing and providing enterprise development services and working with policy makers on the removal of barriers to clean energy investing in the region. The FENERCA program helped on the revision of incentives laws for the renewable energy sector in Honduras, Panama and Nicaragua. He has developed an extensive network of key stakeholders in the Latin American region, including project developers, especially in Central America. Mr. Alvarado was one of the founding members of the Honduran association of renewable energy producers (AHPER).
He serves in the Board of Veragua Foundation of Costa Rica and as Advisor of Cleantech Methods of the US, a consortium that develops, incubates, invests and Works on policy of clean energies in Latin America and the Caribbean. Costa Rican, based in San Jose, Mr. Alvarado has an MBA in Banking and Finance cum laude from Universidad de Costa Rica. His passions include diving (PADI Rescue Diver) and mountain biking.
Ferrán Galindo is the CEO and co-founder of Autotrade, a mobile auction platform designed to help car sellers get the best possible offer for their used car. The year before co-founding Autotrade, Ferrán worked with Campo Orgánico in the reactivation of Panama’s agricultural sector through the development of a digital platform for tracking the production of organic fruit trees using drones and geographical information software. Prior to his work with Campo Orgánico, Ferrán co-founded Miroculus, a Silicon Valley based startup focused on developing cutting edge technology for democratizing molecular detection of disease from a blood sample. Before Miroculus, Ferrán was the VP of organizational systems at The City of Knowledge Foundation, where he was in charge of all technology, operational systems, organizational development, and knowledge management. Ferrán spent the prior seven years there as manager of international organizations where he persuaded many of the top International Organizations, UN Agencies and NGOs to relocate their regional operations to City of Knowledge for more effective coordination and knowledge sharing. Early in his career Ferran co-founded Jungla Cartoons, releasing several educational series focused on educating children about Panama’s history, global sustainability and environmental issues. In 2013 Ferrán participated in a highly competitive program at NASA Ames Research Center as part of Singularity University focused on applying exponential technologies to global grand challenges. Ferrán is a loving father and partner. He continues to record and perform as a drummer throughout the region with Panamanian recording artist “Cienfue”.
Francisco Contreras, entrepreneur and CEO of Oh My Card, the first payment platform company to sell Supermarket and Drugstore Gift Cards from the United States to Central America innovating the way in which immigrants send financial support to their families. Youngest Congressman in Guatemala (2008-2012), he introduced Act 4323 for electronic vote in Congress, eliminating the anonymous voting. He promoted technology, competitiveness, transparency, and security, including initiatives to reduce extortion and lock stolen cellphones. Lecturer in Haiti by the National Democratic Institute (NDI); supported the release of political prisoners in Venezuela; participant of the Inter-American Dialogue on Security; alumni of the Foundation for Analysis and Social Studies (FAES in Spanish) in Spain, “Strategy and Defense Politics” (SDP) at the National Defense University (NDU) in Washington, DC. In 2003, he founded the first work-ready office center in Guatemala; Co-Founder of the Association of Young Entrepreneurs (AJE in Spanish) and the Association of Guatemalan Franchises (AGF in Spanish). BS in Economics with Financial Application at Southern Methodist University (SMU), 2002, Dallas, Texas.
Gabriel is V.P. Sales and Marketing at Acuamaya, Guatemala’s leading producer and exporter of farm raised shrimp (sustainable aquaculture) to key global markets. He also contributes his time as a Board member of AGEXPORT (the Guatemalan Exporters Association) and as President of the Board of Empresarios por la Educacion.
Previously he was Founder & CEO of AmigoLatino, a leading technology company, establishing a network of high-end video conferencing centers between the U.S. and Latin America, helping to reunite thousands of distant migrant families, community groups and organizations, in real-time and at a low cost.
Gabriel has over 25 years of professional experience dealing with the Latin American, Asian, European and U.S. markets, managing key categories in industries including consumer packaged goods, hardware and software, online payments, banking and e-commerce services. Gabriel has held a number of senior management positions with top Fortune 500 companies including Procter & Gamble and Hewlett Packard, where he led and is credited for the successful and profitable introduction of the Pavilion line of Home PC’s into the highly competitive Latin American market. In the U.S. he has also contributed to the development of leading start-up technology companies like E2open (B2B Marketplace), Achex (Online Payments), and Ramp Networks (Networking Solutions).
Gabriel holds an MBA degree from the Kellogg Graduate School of Business at Northwestern University (1996) and a B.S. in Business and Economics from Lehigh University (1991). He is married and has three lovely kids. On his spare time, he is an avid triathlete and ultra-marathoner, having now completed 4 full Ironman triathlons, 5 marathons and just a few weeks ago, the famous Marathon Des Sables (a 257km Ultra-marathon in the Sahara desert), considered by many as one of the toughest races on the planet.
He is Executive Director at Widefense Latin America, a managed security services firm doing business in Central America and Chile. He is also CEO of InteractuaMovil, a start up that develops applications in the mobile space for latinamerican markets. He also serves as a board member of Wau, the largest mobile aggregator in Latinamerica and Reflexión a hosted IT security services firm doing business around the world. Previously, Gabriel was CEO of Bysupport Central America, an IT security firm representing McAfee in the region, which was acquired by McAfee in 2002. Gabriel also participated in the ProReforma movement of Guatemala, which aimed to change the constitution of the country to strengthen the rule of law, the judicial system and the checks and balances needed for a successful government and society. Gabriel is an adventurer in spirit and enjoys the great outdoors. He is happily married and has three daughters.
Gaby Aued comenzó sus funciones en la empresa desde el año 2000, donde ha desarrollado su carrera en diferentes posiciones, incluyendo Especialista de Soluciones Financieras, y Gerente Regional de Soluciones Financieras. A lo largo de su carrera profesional ha participado y dirigido diferentes organizaciones sociales y empresariales. Gaby ha sido líder en la expansión de las operaciones de TECNASA en toda la región. En El Salvador, se destacó como Gerente General desde 2006 hasta 2011, para luego ser promovida a Gerente General de la sede de TECNASA en Panamá y CEO de Grupo TECNASA. Gaby es graduada de Brown University, con especialización en estrategia de las escuelas de negocio de Harvard y Stanford. Ella también es miembro de la Junta Directiva de TECNASA.
Actualmente, es becaria del Instituto Aspen, becaria de Iniciativa de Liderazgo de Centroamérica (CALI) y parte de la Red Global de Liderazgo de Aspen. También es miembro de la Junta Asesora de NCR Corporation.
Gabriela Etchelecu is a dedicated advocate for responsible environmental development with work experience in scientific institutions, NGO and the private sector. Etchelecu directed MarViva Foundation dedicated to protecting ocean resources. She was also the President of the Environmental Committee of the Business Association of Panama and is currently a member of their Board of Directors. She worked as a researcher at the Smithsonian Institute in Panama and is a SCUBA Diver Instructor Trainer. A Marine Docent since 1994, Gabriela has broad experience in Volunteer work and has been a commissioner in several environmental Committees. Gabriela was declared Daughter of David in 2010 for her community work with fishers. Was honored with the Keys of the City of Panama in 2008 and the Young Values Prize in 2007. Born in Panama. Earned her Bachelor of Science at the University of Panamá in 1995 and has post graduate studies in Ecology and Biotechnology.
Gabriela Víquez is Cuestamoras’ Business Development Director at Cuestamoras, a multi-business, family-owned Costa Rican Corporation. She is accountable for business development for all of all Business Units, including Real Estate, Hospitality, Health and Energy. She leads the M&A negotiations for the company. Before joining Cuestamoras in 2011, she had an extensive experience in brokerage houses and investment banking in Costa Rica. She has also experience in merges and acquisitions, as well as international business structuration. She served as Commercial Director of Premier Banking at Banco Nacional de Costa Rica. She also worked as Sales Manager for local and international stock markets at BN Valores Puesto de Bolsa, as well as an independent financial consultant. Mrs. Víquez holds an MBA from the University of Costa Rica. She lives in Costa Rica and she is married with two children. Gabriela is a Fellow of the 12th class of the Central American Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
is founder and general director of G&E Chocolate Adventure Company, an agro industrial company that adds value to cacao production and offers more than 20 different products like cacao caramel roasted seeds, cacao butter creams and oils. He recently launched an innovative line of ice cream. George retired in December 2013 from being Marketing Manager in Costa Rica for cinemas and Hollywood movie studios for more than 15 years. George has characterized himself for being a fearless entrepreneur, moving from radio programming director, promotional director for youth tourism programs, founding a retail and entertainment website, to opening his cacao line business. George has a degree in marketing and advertising. George is a living voice for small farmers in Costa Rica, dedicating his time and resources to promoting economic development in Limón, one of the poorest cities in Costa Rica. He is currently leading a very ambitious program to help farmers improve their incomes and quality of life. George is a Fellow of the 13th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Chief financial officer of Clínica Bíblica Hospital. Gerardo has worked extensively in the formulation and execution of the strategic plan for the next 5-10 years at the Clínica Bíblica, and his leadership has led the organization to find new opportunities for the future of healthcare in Costa Rica. Outside the hospital Gerardo is on the board of various local companies in a variety of fields such as information technology, printing, health-pharmacy and the Costa Rican stock market. Gerardo holds a MBA degree with honors from INCAE, where he was class valedictorian. He also holds a business administration degree in finance from the University of Costa Rica. He is married with three children. He is a Fellow of the second class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Gian Castillero is part of the Arias, Fabrega & Fabrega team of lawyers since 1994. His principal areas of practice include corporate and commercial law, state organization, and maritime law. Castillero was attorney resident in the London office of Arias, Fabrega & Fabrega from 1994 to 2000 and coordinator of the Maritime Finance Department and Ship Registry from 2000 to 2006, actively engaged in transactions of the sale and financing of ships. Currently, Castillero directs the international corporate services department of Arias, Fabrega & Fabrega. He is responsible for administrative oversight of its network of offices in the British Virgin Islands, Belize, London, Geneva, Luxembourg and Hong Kong. Castillero is actively involved in advising private clients on a wide range of topics covering estate planning, structuring and administration of foundations and trusts, private companies advising various foreign jurisdictions (including Panama, British Virgin Islands, Belize and Hong Kong), philanthropic and tax planning and advising clients in institutional and commercial clients in corporate matters. Castillero is president of the International Lawyers Association and a member of the Comisión Alto Nivel designed by the National Government for the protection of international services in Panama. Previously, he presided the commission put forth by Maritime Authority of Panama to draft the actual General Law of the Marina Mercante Panameña.
Gioconda Lizano Van der Laat
Gioconda has a diverse background, having spent more than 18 years working in an international setting (U.S., Costa Rica and Panama) in very diverse industries (Technology, Investment Banking, Consulting & Banking), and in different sectors (Private Sector, NGOs and Development Agencies). Most of her experience is related to her passions: stakeholders’ relations, entrepreneurship development and the role of women ́s leadership in socioeconomic development.
Gioconda is currently the Reputation Regional Manager for BAC Credomatic, overseeing 6 countries in Central America. She manages the relationship of the company ́s main stakeholders ensuring goodwill towards the company and positive impact in the region. Before her promotion, for three years she led the sustainability initiatives of BAC Credomatic in Panama creating value for the bank and its stakeholders. Between 2012 -2016 she managed the startup and growth of Voces Vitales Costa Rica (VVCR), a non-profit organization that promotes women leadership through training and mentoring seeking to maximize their potential. More than 400 women were certified as mentors and 2000 women participated in VVCR’s programs under her leadership. She continues her commitment with VVCR as a Board of Directors advisor.
Before Vital Voices she managed Link Inversiones, the first structured angel investor network in Costa Rica, financed by the Interamerican Development Bank. The network invested around $4 million dollars and coached more than 600 entrepreneurs. Before Link, Gioconda was the Corporate Affairs Director for a consulting and private equity firm, Mesoamerica. She handled the relationship with some of Mesoamerica’s key stakeholders specially those related to the firm’s social investment. She also worked for two technology companies, RealNetworks and Microsoft. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Universidad de Costa Rica. Passionate cook, lives in Costa Rica with her husband and three children.
Gisela Alvarez de Porras
Gisela Alvarez de Porras is a managing partner with Arias & Muñoz, Panama. She launched Albacrome, a large commercial printing company, in Panama back in 2009. She is the former Minister of Trade and Industry in Panama. In government, she has been Director General of the Internal Revenue Services and Vice Minister of Finance. She has represented Panama before the Interamerican Center of Tax Administration and has been the head negotiator of the International Treaties to Avoid Double Taxation. She specialized in tax and estate planning as partner in the firm of Patton, Moreno &Asvat and was managing director of Assets Trust & Corporate Services. From 2004 to 2005, she was a member of the Presidential Commission for the Prevention of Money Laundering, representing the private sector. She studied at the London School of Economics (LLM) and has a postgraduate degree from Stetson University in real estate, and a master of science from the Swiss Business School (SBS). She completed her MBA in 2009. Gisela is certified as a trust and estate practitioner by The Society of Trusts and Estate Practitioners (London) and is founding partner of the Panama branch. She is president of Vital Voices Panama and a member of the Panamanian Association of Exeuctives, where she was a member of the board. She is a member of the board of directors of the Panamanian Stock Exchange and Special Olympics. She is a Fellow of the third class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Director of Corporate Affairs at Florida Ice & Farm Co. Before joining this company she worked as a consultant for governments, NGOs and companies in Central America in the areas of competitiveness and corporate social responsibility. In 2006, she published 10 Cases on Corporate Social Responsibility Good Practices, and The Competitiveness Potential of Guatemala. Between 2001 and 2003, she worked for the AVINA Foundation in Latin America as strategic initiatives manager supporting the development of social and environmental leaders in the region. Before joining AVINA, she worked as a researcher and project coordinator for the Latin American Center for Competitiveness and Sustainable Development at INCAE. A native of San José, Costa Rica, Sánchez attended the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University, majoring in strategy and marketing.
is a lawyer and notary public with Bufete Pereira Soto in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. He previously served as in-house counsel with GrupoInconhsa, S.A. He assisted the Minister of Industry and Commerce in cooperation with the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (BCIE) in setting up a compensation measures plan for Honduras in preparation for CAFTA; during that time, he was the youngest member of the Legal Council of the Chamber of Commerce. Guillermo earned his law degrees from Universidad NacionalAutónoma de Honduras and Southern Methodist University, Dedman School of Law. He clerked with the United States District Court in the Northern District of Dallas. He is a Fellow of the inaugural class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Gustavo León Gómez
Gustavo Leon Gomez started his private practice after graduating from his Juris Doctor degree from the National Autonomous University in Honduras in 1994 at the law firm León-Gómez & Associates; in 1999 he became a partner at J.R. Paz & Asociados where he lead the international practice; in 2005, he was one of the founding partners of the regional firm Consortium Centroamérica Abogados, based in the Tegucigalpa office, where he currently develops his practice in banking law, with a special emphasis on corporate and personal credit agreement structuring, counseling local financial institutions, specially credit card companies and international credit transactions, including the structuring of guarantees for syndicated loans. He has also developed his practice in litigation and arbitration, forming part of the first generation of arbitrators certified by the Chamber of Commerce and Industries of Tegucigalpa and is currently arbitrator for Honduras of the Inter American Commercial Arbitration Commission. He has appeared as lead counsel in two cases before the Central American Court of Justice, in Managua Nicaragua as part of his practice in Central American Communitarian Law. Gustavo holds a LLM in Global Business Law from Suffolk Law School, Boston Massachusetts and has completed Postgraduate studies in International Business Law at Georgetown University Law Centre, Washington D.C. and Central American Institute for Business Administration (INCAE). Gustavo obtained his Juris Doctor from the National Autonomous University of Honduras Law School (1994)
General Manager for Cuestamoras Hospitality Division. It operates leading international brands on four properties, known for their amazing architecture, location, service and value. Cuestamoras is a multi-business organization with operations in Latin America headquartered in San José, Costa Rica. He is Vice-president of the board of ICT (Instituto Costarricense de Turismo) and several NPOs focused in sustainable development and inclusiveness on vulnerable populations. He is founder of a firm that has advised international organizations as well as governments throughout the Latin America Region in matters of sustainable tourism. He became a father 2 years ago after several years of trying with his wife to have children and this has lead him to a more intensive quest on how to leave a better world.
Economista. Consultor internacional, empresario y emprendedor social. Casado con Maricarmen Rico y padre de 5 hijos. Graduado por la Universidad de Oxford, Inglaterra (M.Sc. in Economics for Development) y el Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México-ITAM (Lic. en Economía). Actualmente se dedica a asesorar a organismos multilaterales y regionales sobre desarrollo económico, competitividad, integración, y comercio e inversiones, con énfasis en el papel que juegan las cadenas de valor, la logística, la energía y los asocios público-privados en las nuevas economías (“economía naranja”, economía verde).
Ha sido Asesor/Consultor de diversos organismos multilaterales y/o de cooperación, incluyendo el BID, OCDE, CEPAL, AECID, JBIC-JICA, KOICA, y la Unión Europea, entre otras, así como de la SGSICA, SIECA, CENPROMYPE y SITCA en Centroamérica. Fue Viceministro de Relaciones Exteriores de El Salvador entre 1999 y 2003, a cargo de la promoción de exportaciones e inversiones y la integración centroamericana. Fue el Primer Comisionado Presidencial de El Salvador del Plan Puebla Panamá (hoy Proyecto Mesoamérica). Tras su experiencia gubernamental, coordinó y administró el principal programa de la Cooperación Europea para la Integración Centroamericana: el PAIRCA. Su carrera profesional inició en México, en 1990, como Asesor de la compañía petrolera PEMEX –como parte del equipo que negoció el Capítulo de Energía del Tratado de Libre Comercio entre México-Estados Unidos y Canadá (NAFTA) y posteriormente en la re-ingeniería de Petróleos Mexicanos en el marco de la primera gran reforma energética de México.
Es Presidente de Asoscia, empresa de consultoría y proyectos inmobiliarios. Es Directivo de Financiera Integral y de la empresa de intercambios Punto Transacciones. Y es Directivo de FESA, fundación privada sin fines de lucro dedicada a la prevención de violencia y generación de oportunidades a través del deporte y la educación. Ha sido además directivo en diversas instituciones públicas incluyendo el Banco Multisectorial de Inversiones (BMI), la Comisión Nacional de Promoción de Inversiones (PROESA), la Corporación Salvadoreña de Turismo (CORSATUR) y la Comisión Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACYT).
Es autor de los estudios “Elementos para una Agenda Pragmática de Integración Económica” (SIECA/UE, 2014); y de “Una Agenda Público-Privada para la Integración Centroamericana” (SGSICA/UE, 2014). Co-autor de la reconocida publicación “La Integración Centroamericana: Beneficios y Costos” (CEPAL, 2004).
is general manager for Dole Food Company operations in Honduras and Guatemala, where he previously held various roles in finance and logistics. He is currently involved in several organizations, as president of the board of Hospital Vicente D’Antoni (NGO), board member of Almacenes y Depósitos, S.A., board member of The Robinson Foundation and board member of MUSA BREEDING, a consortium created with the objective of developing banana varieties resistant to the new worldwide threat that Foc-TR4 represents. Héctor’s experience includes finance and logistics in the beverage industry with Cervecería Hondure–a, S.A. and in investment promotion for Honduras working for the Foundation for Investment and Development of Exports (FIDE). Héctor has also participated as board member and advisor to Fundación para el Desarrollo Turístico de La Ceiba (FUNDETUR), of which he is a founding member. Other past experiences include board member at the Cámara de Comercio Industrias de Atlántida, college professor at UNITEC, member of the Consejo Municipal de Desarrollo of La Ceiba, and member of the family selection committee of Habitat for Humanity-La Ceiba. Héctor holds an agronomy degree from Zamorano and an MBA from INCAE. Héctor is a Fellow of the 13th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Henry is a passionate entrepreneur. He was born and raised in Guatemala and graduated from Business School at Universidad Francisco Marroquín. He then started his professional career in the Corporate World, working in the marketing department for Phillip Morris for more than seven years.
His continuous corporate growth allowed him to fulfill his dream of exploring the World, specially the natural side of it. During his many adventure trips, he was able to spend enough time with himself to realize that he wasn’t completely happy and that he didn’t want to spend his life working only for money. After quitting he returned to Guatemala looking for a job or project where he could discover true happiness and fulfilling success.
Henry discovered a piece of land near Guatemala City and even though it was completely mistreated and eroded, he dreamed of turning it into a natural park. After many years of hard work, he was able to open GreenRush, a lush natural park where people can come and enjoy the contact with the thriving nature. GreenRush has been self-sustainable since the second year, allowing it to continuously reinvest in expanding their products and services; thus becoming a benchmark for the developing ecotourism industry in Guatemala. Henry is often invited to share his story and his business mindset in various conferences and seminars. On 2018 he was nominated by the Guatemalan Managers Association as Manager of the Year in the Creativity and Innovation field. He is also a professor at the University, a great dog and horse whisperer, a great husband, and father to three beautiful kids. He is constantly exploring new projects to continue sharing the way he discovered his relationship with nature, and his mission of leaving this World a bit better than he found it.
Hildegard Vasquez is head of the architecture office, HacheUve, which she founded in 1998. Her office has concentrated mostly on preservation and renovation of historic sites such as San Felipe Historic District in Panama or the city of Granada, Nicaragua. She served as head of Fundación Calicanto, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the cultural, historic, and human restoration of San Felipe. Its projects include the re-socialization of local gangs, educational programs for single mothers, multiple cultural events, and plans for the restoration of colonial churches. She has also been a member of the Inter Oceanic Canal Museum Board since its creation in 1997 and was part of the Contemporary Arts Museum Board from 2001 to 2005. Her office has worked on restoration projects such as Panama’s National Theater and Santo Domingo Convent and is currently working on a proposal for a contemporary arts center in the transitional area of San Felipe and Chorrillo. Hildegard has a BA and a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design and a master’s in historic restoration from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. She is a Fellow of the second class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
An engineer by profession, graduate of the University of El Salvador (1991); with a master’s degree in Training Engineering and Employment Systems, from the University of Toulouse, France (2000); holds studies in Business Administration and Management, from the Central American University “Doctor José Simeón Cañas,” El Salvador (1995); Human Resources Administration, at the Latin American University of Science and Technology, Costa Rica (1996).
He has studied Senior Management, at the Central American Institute of Business Administration, INCAE of Costa Rica (1992) and the Central American University “Doctor José Simeón Cañas de El Salvador” (1994); as well as internships specializing in the Political Systems of the United States, Spain, and Sweden (1993). He speaks Spanish, French, and English.
He has worked professionally at the Central American University Higher Council, CSUCA (1996); director of External Cooperation at the University of El Salvador (1997); as a member of the Advisory Committee of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of El Salvador (2000-2009) and as President of the Specialized Institute in Higher Education for Diplomatic Training, IESFORD (2009-2018).
He has published numerous articles on International Relations, Diplomacy, Human Rights, Migration, Sustainable Development, Climate Change, Peace, and Security.
His parliamentary experience began in 1994 in the Legislative Assembly of El Salvador. Subsequently, from 2003, he served as president of the Committee on Culture and Education and chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Central American and Salvadoran Integration abroad, from where he participated in the Forum of Presidents of Legislative Powers of Central America and the Caribbean (FOPREL) and the Inter-Parliamentary Union (UPI).
He took over as Minister of Foreign Affairs on June 1, 2009, from which he led El Salvador’s initiative in relaunching the Central American integration process. He founded the vice ministry of cooperation for development achieving unprecedented resource mobilization. He also established the South-South cooperation direction, managing more than 100 partnership projects. With this leadership, the country was elected technical secretary of the Ibero-American Cooperation System.
On 27 June 2013, he was elected Secretary-General of Central American Integration System (SICA) and took office on 1 July 2013 from where he achieved a larger budget and the institutional strengthening.
On 1 June 2014, he again took over as Minister of Foreign Affairs of El Salvador, serving until May 2018 from where he achieved the presidency of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UN) and led the work for the migrant communities.
He has been decorated by the governments of Belize, Bolivia, Chile, Spain, Guatemala, Italy, Panama, Peru, as well as by the General Secretariat of SICA, for his efforts regarding regional integration and strengthens bilateral relations.
He currently serves as a consultant at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Dominican Republic and the Food and Agriculture Organization of The United Nations in Central America.
He is a Fellow of the sixth class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Hugo Roberto Díaz
Hugo is a serial entrepreneur with extensive experience delivering interactive services and software solutions that leverage cloud computing and mobile telephony. Before co-founding Vital Interaction, he was founder and CEO of Celumanix, one of the leading providers of Mobile Content and Mobile Marketing in Latin America, with operations in eight countries and more than 3 million customers. Previously Hugo was the Commercial Director for Terra Lycos in Central America and the Caribbean, where he and his team achieved an all time record in sales growth. His first international role was as the Vice President of Information Systems for AIESEC International, headquarters in Rotterdam, The Netherlands at the young age of 23. He is passionate about entrepreneurship and has supported several initiatives to help educate and equip other entrepreneurs, including the implementation of the Acton MBA in Entrepreneurship at his Alma Matter, UFM in Guatemala. He has a passion for traveling, having visited over 140 cities in 45 countries. He loves to swim, scuba dive, read and enjoy quality time with his family. He is a Fellow of the second class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Works as director of ISC Productions. He has worked as Special Advisor to President Oscar Arias and Ministry of Transport, Karla Gonzalez in issues related from image and communications to road safety and traffic police operations (2006-2010). As former chief of traffic police and executive director of the Road Safety Council (2002-2004) he coordinated various initiatives such as the mandatory safety belt law and media campaigns creating new police strategies that led to a 30% decrease in accident related fatalities (2002-2005). He has an extensive and prize winning career as a television anchor and reporter and press journalist for various networks as Channel 7 and La Nación in Costa Rica, and CNN Latin America and Tele 5 and Television Española abroad. He spent three years as an itinerant correspondent reporting from Europe, Middle East, Africa and Australia. He is now writing a script with the intention of producing and directing his first film. He has a degree in advertising, journalism, and audiovisual production. He is a Fellow of the second class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Isabel Saint Malo de Alvarado
Isabel Saint Malo de Alvarado was elected Vice President of Panama in 2014. Formerlty, she was an independent development consultant at Stratego Consultores, SA, with particular expertise in governance, consensus building, state modernization, and civil society engagement in development. She was previously assistant resident representative for the United Nations Development Program in the Panama country office. She was responsible for projects and interventions in the areas of state modernization, governance, poverty, the environment, and other development areas. Isabel designed and led several democratic dialogue processes in Panama, such as the Bambito Process, Panama 2000, Vision 2020 and most recently the National Consensus Building Process for Development. She has been Ambassador of Panama to the United Nations at its New York City headquarters, as well as member of several Panamanian delegations for the negotiation of political and commercial agreements at the regional level. She is a member of the National Council of Foreign Affairs of Panama and of the Advisory Council of the Central American Institute for Research on Fiscal Policy. She holds a degree in international relations from St. Joseph’s University and an MBA from Nova Southeastern University. She is married to Omar Alvarado and has three children Alberto, Carolina Isabel and Julio Raúl. She is a Fellow of the fourth class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
is general manager of Protexsa, a 100-year-old family company that manufactures and sells apparel to some of the best known brands in the United States and other countries. Before his current role at Protexsa, Jacobo was also involved in running other apparel businesses that he helped develop and grow. Some of his main achievements have been the restructuring of the business and forging key alliances that have paved the way for the company to successfully compete and adapt considering the changing face of retail in one of the worldís most globalized industries. Commitment to corporate social responsibility has always been part of Jacoboís philosophy and he contributes part of his time in supporting two centers that care for underprivileged youth in Honduras. He lives in San Pedro Sula, Honduras and earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Auburn and two masterís degrees from the Universities of San Pedro Sula and from INCAE Business School. Jacobo is a Fellow of the 13th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Jacobo Regalado W. is the secretary of Agriculture and Livestock of Honduras since February of 2010. He is the former director of the Paz y Convivencia project, from 2007 to 2010; this IADB’s social reinsertion project was designed to prevent crime and violence in the Sulla Valley region of the country. In the private sector, he was elected President of the Honduras Business Council (COHEP) for 2002 to 2004, period in which he was elected president of the Central American, Panama and Dominican Republic Federation of Private Entities in 2003. He was appointed general manager of the Honduras state phone company HONDUTEL in 2006. He served as president of the Honduran Federation of Agriculture and Livestock Producers from 2001 to 2004. A native of San Pedro Sula, Honduras, Regalado attended the Escuela Agricola Panamericana El Zamorano and Mississippi State University majoring in Dairy Science and Animal Science.
Jacqueline Foglia Sandoval, a CALI 3 Fellow, is Corporate Affairs Director at Tigo Honduras, (Millicom telecommunications) responsible for developing and executing the local strategy for Government Relations, Corporate Communications and Corporate Responsibility programs. Jackie served as an officer in the Honduran Army and held senior management positions at Cargill Corporation. She was Sub-Secretary of State for Tourism in Honduras and owned a consulting firm that provided guidance in international business focusing on attracting foreign investment. She was a negotiator in the free trade agreement between Central America, the Dominican Republic and the U.S. (DR- CAFTA). She also served as Director of External Relations at Zamorano University, Honduras and as University Outreach Officer at American University of Afghanistan She is the first foreign female graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. She earned a Fulbright Scholarship to obtain a M.A. in International Relations and Economics at the School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C. She has a certificate degree in Trade Policy and Commercial Law from Carleton University, Canada and an Executive MBA from Universidad Francisco de Vitoria of Spain.
Jaime Zablah Siri is the Honorary Consul of Pakistan in El Salvador, he is also an elected councilman at City Hall in Santa Tecla municipality, El Salvador. He is the CEO and founder of La Factoria Ciudadana, an organization that is dealing with the rehabilitation and re insertion of Salvadorians previously involved in violence (Gangs, Jails, Immigration) also is the founder and CEO of Inversiones Caoba, a violence, drug abuse prevention and structural consulting company. Former Vice President for Central America for HARTSOOK Companies, a fundraising consulting companies for NGOs. Former CEO of FUNDASALVA, an anti-drug foundation in El Salvador. An active member of the International Task Force for the Drug Free American Foundation. He holds a chair in VNGO; (Vienna NGO on Drugs), an civil organization that is helping UN on drug related issues. He is a national and international speaker and has lectured on various topics such as crime, drug and gangs, and child abuse prevention. As expert in the areas of drug abuse, violence prevention and family education, he is an eventual consultant for the Congress of El Salvador, National Civil Police, Anti drug commission of El Salvador among others. Married for 27 years and a proud father of 4 daughters
is the founder and CEO of IME Marine Group of Companies, one of the largest marine surveying and consultancy companies in Latin America, which also has regional offices in United Arab Emirates, China, Paraguay, Spain (Canary Islands), Nigeria and Colombia, and representative offices in more than 25 countries worldwide. He has been invited as a speaker at the national and international maritime forums, and has been awarded several recognitions. Javier earned a bachelor’s degree in science, graduating cum laude, from the United States Merchant Marine Academy, Kings Point and specializes in maritime safety, consultancy and logistics. He has completed three master’s degree in Marine, Naval and business management, from prestigious universities in Panama, Canada, Belgium and France. Javier has exerted his leadership with a strong human sensibility and vocation for social integration and equality. He is a member of the Rotary Club where he has been able to collectively address and support some of the basic needs of the Panamanian society. Javier is a Fellow of the 13th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Javier Antonio Simán has been, since 2008, CEO of Grupo Farsiman, one of the top pharmaceutical groups in Honduras composed of three vertically integrated units: manufacture, wholesale and retail. Javier is director of the local chamber of commerce, Cámara de Comercio e Industrias de Cortes where he is a member of the Strategic Planning Committee. Javier is also a member of the Board of Directors of Fundación Obras Sociales Vicentinas, and President of Programa Puerta Abierta which provides support to more than 200 HIV-positive women and men, and their families. Since 2007, Javier has been a volunteer for Junior Achievement, a non-profit organization that helps young students understand the meaning of entrepreneurship and the importance of staying in school. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering at University of Wisconsin-Madison and lives in San Pedro Sula with this wife and three children.
Jayro Bustamante, director, filmmaker and Guatemalan screenwriter. Jayro in 2019 founds the IXCANUL foundation, a non-profit foundation that aims to use film as a tool for learning, change and social impact in Guatemala, both in the Mayan communities and in the mestizo area. Likewise, he premiered his second film TREMORS in the Panorama selection of the Berlinale, which has already toured more than thirty international festivals conquering several awards. He is also in Post production of his third film, La Llorona with premiere planned for 2020. He is currently producing several projects for other Guatemalan directors. In 2018 he was awarded by the Fondation Gan pour le Cinéma, in France. Jayro in 2017 founded La Sala De Cine, which is a free cinema to watch amateur films, with the intention of creating a community around the seventh art, without the borders of social classes that affect society so much in
Guatemala. In 2016 Jayro created a talent representation agency to continue accompanying the
actresses of Ixcanul that he had formed. Jayro obtained acting contracts in Hollywood and Mexico films for the main actress of Ixcanul, María Mercedes Coroy, driving her career. In 2015, Jayro, with his opera IXCANUL, became a director by winning a Silver Bear at the Berlinale and more than 60 awards at international festivals. Ixcanul was the second film representative of Guatemala for the Oscar race and the first one for the Goldens Globes. In 2012 he worked giving stop-motion animation workshops at the Sorbone Université de Paris. Jayro in 2010 obtained the quality award of the CNC (National Film Center
French) with his short film “Cuando Sea Grande”, premiered at the Clermont Ferrand festival and aired on France 3 TV, France, on Swedish television and Dutch. In 2009 Jayro founded his own independent film production company in Guatemala: La Casa De Producción, with which he has produced several projects, creating alliances of co-production between Guatemala and France.
He did his studies in advertising and social communication at the University of San Carlos in Guatemala. His professional beginnings were in advertising, as director he made several commercials for the agency Ogilvy & Matter. Then he moved to Paris to continue his film studies, he trained as a filmmaker at the CLCF (Conservatoire Libre du Cinéma Français). He continued his studies as a screenwriter in Rome at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia. After that short period in Italy he returned to France and decided to work between Paris and Guatemala.
He has been part of the jury at Berlinale 2016, Brussels Film Festival 2018, Biarritz Festival 2018, Platino and Fenix Awards, and Los Cabos Film Festival. Jayro Bustamante is Fondation Gan pour le Cinéma laureate.
Jerónimo Lancerio has been minister of culture and sports of Guatemala since 2008. He was vice president of the Latin American Indigenous Fund until 2010. Before government, he was general manager for CORSA Group/PBL Tropical Plant SA in Guatemala, an agricultural export group. He is the national secretary of the political party UnidadNacional de la Esperanza for Mayan, Garifuna, and Xinka populations. He advises indigenous populations as part of a movement that helps families recuperate form the internal conflict in Guatemala. In 2005, Jerónimo was mentioned in the business magazine “Estrategia y Negocios” as one of the 120 most innovative businessmen in the region because of the development and commercialization of “air plants.” He majored in business administration at the Atlantic International University in Miami, Florida. He speaks the Mayan language K’iche, English, Italian, and German. He is a Fellow of the third class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
is the executive director of FUNSEPA, an organization that improves the quality of education in Guatemala through technology. FUNSEPA has benefited over 400,000 children, trained 80,000 teachers, and equipped more than 1,300 schools with computers and educational software. Jessica is co-creator of Programa Valentina, a program that accelerates through a disruptive model, the insertion of at risk youth in technology jobs. Before joining FUNSEPA in 2008, Jessica was director of Guatemala SANA Foundation, which focuses on education, health, nutrition and environment in Sacatepéquez. As director of Guatemala SANA, Jessica created an alliance with TOMS Shoes, bringing more than 300,000 pairs of shoes to the country. Jessica has more than 15 years of experience working with social causes, from children with disabilities in Tibet, to children with HIV in Gambia, sexual workers in Curacao, at risk adolescents in Venezuela, and orchestral music in Guatemala. Jessica holds a bachelor’s degree in biology and health: science, society and policy from Brandeis University, where she received the Outstanding Senior Award, and a master’s degree in international health from the University of Copenhagen. Jessica was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela, and currently lives in Guatemala with her husband and two children. Jessica is a Fellow of the 13th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Managing Partner, CA Trade Consulting Group, San Salvador, El Salvador, were she advises firms interested in taking advantage of trade agreements, as well as on issues regarding market access, compliance with rules of origin and customs procedures, trade defense instruments and economic integration. She is also Executive Director for El Salvador’s Chamber of Telecommunications. Prior to joining CA Trade, she served as Vice Minister of Economy of El Salvador; Chief Negotiator for the European Union – Central America Association Agreement, the Doha Round at the World Trade Organization, negotiations with Canada and the Central American Economic Integration Process; Trade Policy Director; and Chief Negotiator for the Labor and Environment groups of the US – Central America – Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA – DR). Johanna is a Fellow of the Central America Leadership Initiative and the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
John Tennant Wright Sol
Johnny Wright is president and founder of Nuestro Tiempo, a political party established in El Salvador in 2019. Johnny served as an elected member of Congress during a single legislature from 2015 to 2018 under the ARENA right-wing party, representing San Salvador. Prior to politics, he was briefly involved in family business, as well as a personal entrepreneurial project. His first encounter with public service took place in Fairfax, Virginia as a professional firefighter at the age of 23. This particular experience has driven his passion for recognizing the value of public service and the importance of restoring trust in it. Johnny earned a master’s degree in business administration from IE Business School in Madrid and his bachelor’s degree in political science from the George Washington University in Washington, DC.
Jorge Aguilar is CEO of Desarrollos Jaguar, S.A., a real estate management and development company. Currently, Desarrollos Jaguar, S.A. is developing the eco-touristic project Villas Ecológicas Los Mazapanes, a project consisting of beach villas with strong environmental components located in the town of Tela on the Honduran Caribbean. He is also an independent consultant and contractor and founding partner of Inmobiliaria Cinco Estrellas, S.A. de C.V. (ICINESA), a family business dedicated to management and development of real estate in Tegucigalpa. He is chairman of the Innovation and Unity Social Democrat Party (PINU). Previously, he was an elected representative to the Honduran National Congress, national youth coordinator for the party, and a 1997 congressional candidate. Jorge is former president of the Honduran Fulbright Association, a member of the Continuing Education Committee of the Honduran Civil Engineers Association, and founder of the EVA Foundation. He received a degree in civil engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with a focus in entrepreneurial real estate. He is a Fellow of the fourth class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Jorge Antonio García
Jorge Garcia is an award winning technology innovator and entrepreneur that focuses on making products that people love. He is co-Founder & CTO of Iconic (helloiconic.com) where he leads technology, products, services, product strategy and R&D. Iconic is a highly specialized App Development & Design studio that works closely with Fortune 500 companies and well funded startups creating consumer apps loved by millions of users worldwide. Jorge is also working on a new venture, Ballotted, where he is creating a simple, unified, secure, proven, fully auditable, legally defensible e-voting platform that people can trust. He started thinking about Ballotted after creating with some of his friends a crowdsourced auditing platform named VotoSocial.org for the contested 2013 Honduras elections for which he won the prestigious MIT Technology Review Innovators under 35 award. Jorge has been featured in Forbes, is member of the Young Entrepreneurs Council and member of the Latino Business Action Network. He holds a B.Eng. in Computer Systems from UNITEC, Honduras and a M.Sc. in Intelligent Systems Design from Chalmers, Sweden. Jorge is a class 2016 CALI Fellow and member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network at the Aspen Institute.
Jorge’s venture, ballotted, is a simple, unified, secure, proven, fully auditable, legally defensible e-voting platform that people can trust.
Jorge Manuel Zelaya
Jorge Manuel Zelaya Fajardo has been a professor at the Catholic University of Honduras during the past 14 years. He has taught eight different courses in the masters program. Jorge Manuel served as the Executive Director of United Way Honduras and worked for Portafolio Inmobiliario for over 10 years. He co-founded SOLIDARIDAD, a volunteer-based nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing malnutrition in his home country of Honduras. He is a member of the Honduras Food Bank Board of Directors. He also given conferences in the United States, Cuba, Nicaragua and Panamá and served as guest speaker at the First Edition of TEDxTegucigalpa in 2012. He holds a bachelors degree in Civil Engineering and an MBA from INCAE. Jorge Manuel is married and is the father of two young boys.
Jorge Patiño is a Financial Advisor at Mercado de Valores de Costa Rica, with $202Million of assets under administration, producing in average 25% of the firms’ income. Recently is part of the Wealth Management team, which has the responsibility of the investments of the highest net worth individual clients of the firm; also newly added to the Strategic Planning Team. Jorge publishes bimonthly an article of finance investment related topic in Forbes Centroamérica magazine. Has been an active member of several non-profit organizations, member of the Financial Committee of the Costa Rican-American Chamber of Commerce (Amcham), currently member of the board of Asociación de Amigos de Sor María Romero, organization dedicated to fund raise the institute that provides education, housing and meals to over 200 female teenagers in social risk. He was involved with the Costa Rican Government in the process of developing the Carbon Bond Market of Costa Rica in order to have them tradable in the local Stock Exchange, important milestone in order for the country to obtain carbon neutrality in 2021. He earned his bachelor degree in Universidad de Costa Rica and his Master in Business Administration degree at The Pennsylvania State University, graduating with honors with the second highest grade point average (GPA).
Holds a BA in Psychology, a Masters on Project Management and Masters on Development Management from London School of Economics, as a Chevening Scholar. José Aguilar is currently the Executive Director of Horizonte Positivo, a private sector Think and Do Tank that promotes intersectoral agreements to reestablish governability and collaborates with public policy reforms, focusing on Costa Rica s human development. Since March 2013, he started and leads a social business called La Esquina that canalizes gang members creativity and energy into designing clothes, caps, backpacks and other products for young people. At the same time, he works with high-ranking government officials, media owners and key stakeholders in order to redesign at risk youth public policies. The first phase of this project takes place in La Cueva del Sapo in La Carpio Community (one of the most violent neighborhood in the Capital. He worked as Social Development Advisor for local governments and as consultant for the EU in Central American Border Zones. He then founded the NGO Fundación Acción Joven (FAJ) using his own savings. FAJ uses participatory methodology to prevent school dropouts of at-risk students in public high schools. It has developed alliances with the Costa Rican Ministries of Education, Welfare, Culture, Security, and private firms. The Government recently declared it as “Organization of Public National Interest.” He is an Ashoka, a Fellow of the eighth class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
José Alberto Rivera
José Alberto Rivera is General Manager at Aceros Arquitectónicos, a construction company started by his grandfather. Before starting to work in the family business he worked at Kessler, a solid waste and recycling consulting company in Tampa, Florida where he worked for a year. José Alberto studied Industrial Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, USA. He did an internship at Heine Recycling GmbH where he worked as the manager’s assistant in Weissenberg, Germany. In 2014 he got a degree in Effective Negotiation on Electrical Energy from the Chamber of Industry of Guatemala and he was an active member of Empresarios por la Educación from 2011 to 2015. José speaks Spanish, English and German. José lives in Guatemala recently married to Ana Cecilia Asenso. José is a Fellow of the 12th class of the Central American Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
José Andrés Botrán-Briz
He is the chairman of the board of Compañía Agrícola Industrial Santa Ana. He was born in Guatemala City on July 7, 1962. He earned a degree in Industrial Engineering from Boston University. He participated in the Center for National Strategic Studies (ESTNA), where he took courses with members of the various sectors of Guatemalan society to generate a shared vision of the country. Andrés worked in Paris and New York as a sugar merchandising specialist worldwide for French and American companies and later founded his own marketing/merchandising company as the agent of Amerop Sugar Corporation and later Czarnikow Rionda. He has developed real estate projects for different segments, ranging from popular low-income housing, to subdivision of land, to industrial, commercial and residential condominiums. Andrés introduced the subject of hunger at the private sector level in 2001 as a member of the Chamber of Industry, and he represented such entity in the Guatemalan Forum from 2001 to 2004. He worked for the public sector starting in 2004 as Commissioner of the National Front Against Hunger. In this role, with the aim of institutionalizing food and nutrition security and encouraging sustainability, he began the process of creation, consultation and approval of the National Policy and the Law on Food Security and Nutrition which was unanimously approved by the Congress in May 2005, being the first law that addresses the issue systemically in Latin America. He then was appointed Secretary of Food Security and Nutrition. Andrés is a Fellow from the third class of the Central America Leadership Initiative (CALI) and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
José Antonio Sauma
is a partner and managing director at Mesoamerica, a leading private equity investment company focused on building long-term partnerships and purpose-driven businesses across Spanish Speaking Latin America. José Antonio is convinced that many of the region’s pressing needs and aspirations in areas such as renewable power generation, health and wellness, can be addressed by mobilizing capital, talent, and resources to build sustainable businesses, that can in turn collaborate with governments and local communities to find innovative solutions. Over the last 20 years, he has lead teams that invest and advise companies in sectors such as renewable power generation, telecom, banking, construction, and consumer goods. José Antonio is currently the Chairman of Yo Emprendedor, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting entrepreneurship as a pillar of social and economic development. He has held a variety of leadership positions in the Boards of Mesoamerica’s portfolio companies, as well as in IMAP, a global network of investment banks. José Antonio has an MBA from INSEAD in France and Singapore and a business degree from Ithaca College in New York, where he graduated summa cum laude. He is dedicated to his family, and passionate about music, photography, entrepreneurship, and continuous learning. José Antonio is a Fellow of the 13th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
José Augusto Toledo
José Augusto Toledo is managing partner at Arias & Muñoz law firm in Guatemala since 2007. José is currently the president of Fundación Educativa Guatemala of which he has been a member of since 2010. He is also vice-president of Fundación Fondo Unido de Guatemala and vice president of Fundación Emprende. Since José entered law school at Universidad Rafael Landivar in 1990 he started being more active in social and community matters, serving as volunteer in Guatemalan general elections and being part of the faculty’s Student Council. Once he was more settled into his career he started participating more in institutions investing back into the Guatemalan community, especially in education and the needs of children. José has a Master’s in Mercantile Law and Business Administration from the Escuela Superior de Economía y Adminstración de Empresas (ESEADE), Universidad Francisco Marroquín, Guatemala and a Juris Doctor Law Degree from Universidad Rafael Landívar. José lives in Guatemala with his wife and three children and enjoys marathon running and triathlons. José is a Fellow of the 12th class of the Central American Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
Jose is Co-Founder of Applaudo Studios, the largest software development factory in El Salvador that focus on custom mobile and web applications. He is also Co-Founder of Navigate Consulting, an aerospace consultant firm that helps airlines in the Americas and Europe to maximize efficiencies and deploy new products and services. Co-Founder of Alfred Technologies Inc., a company that provides a residential social platform that enables smart communities. Jose is also part of the Forbes Technology Council and Capital Factory in Austin Texas that serves as coach to entrepreneurs and business executives to develop their business opportunities. Jose is also active in nonprofit projects to help reduce sexual abuse incidents, manage personal finance and serve as coach for young professionals to develop technological communities. In 2014 prior to becoming an entrepreneur Jose worked for Veca Airlines as Chief Technology Officer developing the airline’s technology strategy and ramping operations. Jose worked for 12 years with large technology companies “TECNASA”, “Dell”, “GBM” leading the service delivery organizations for their operations in the Americas.
Jose holds a bachelor’s degree in “Business Administration” and a Postgraduate degree in “Customer excellence”. Throughout his professional career Jose has worked in the IT services sector for over 18 years. Although Jose has a great passion for technology and the aerospace industry, he enjoys collaborating in social projects with positive impact to develop communities, on his personal side he is also father of a 17-year-old daughter and loves to spend time cooking, motor racing sports and hanging out with the family.
José Jesús Mora
Jose Mora is a former Catholic priest and the Academic Director at Universidad Tecnologica de Honduras, since 2014. He was the General Manager of the Catholic Foundation for Education and Social Communication, which includes the Catholic Church’s newspaper, a radio station, a television station, and an audiovisual producer. He participates in diverse forums for civic participation, representing to the conference of Bishops: Coalition for Improvement of the Justice, National Forum of Convergence, Commission of Notables, etc. He was in charge of the Press Office of the Bishops Conference in Honduras and he was the spokesman of the Archdiocese of Tegucigalpa until December 2006. He has been a Professor of Ethics at the Mayor Seminary (Preparatory Institution for future priests), Superior Institute of Police Education and the Honduran Catholic University. He has participated in many courses and workshops of journalism and social communications in Latin America, USA, and Europe. He received the Sacred Order from Cardinal Rodríguez in the Suyapa Basilica in 1994. He is a Fellow of the second class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network
José Martí Jiménez Figueres
José Martí Jiménez Figueres (Martí Jiménez) is the founder and managing partner of Noveza. As an entrepreneur since 2004 he has led or co-led the creation, project management, and capital structuring of four companies so far with about $20M raised and more than 150 direct jobs created in ecotourism, hospitals, and assisted living. Investors in his projects include renowned local business leaders, commercial banks, The Nature Conservancy, and Conservation International. Previously, José Martí worked at Mesoamerica Investments in project management and M&A mandates in Central America for over four years, and as an intern at Bain & Company in Colombia and Ramius Capital Group in New York. He has served on several boards of directors in the private sector and at a cabinet-level board in the public sector. José Martí serves on the Investment Committee of EcoEnterprises Fund, the board of visitors of the Organization for Tropical Studies, on INCAE’s Costa Rica National Committee, and an Assembly Member of the CRUSA Foundation. He is an industrial engineer from the University of Costa Rica and an MBA from Harvard University. He is a Fellow of the sixth class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
José Miguel Torrebiarte
Jose Miguel Torrebiarte is vice president of Grupo Progreso, a company primarily dedicated to the cement industry and the commercialization of building materials in Central America. Throughout his 20-year career within the family business, he has occupied different important executive positions, and in 2004 he was the first of his generation to be the president of the board of directors of the company. During this period, the company’s corporate government was restructured and a ten-year strategic growth plan was implemented. Jose Miguel serves as a director of Fundación para el Desarrollo (FUNDESA), is a member of Young Presidents Organization, member of Consejo Empresarial de América Latina (CEAL), president of the Inter-American Cement Federation (FICEM-APCAC) and president of the Foundation of the Cultural and Natural Mayan Heritage (PACUNAM). José Miguel has a BS in industrial engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) and a MBA from INCAE in Costa Rica. He lives in Guatemala with his wife and four children. He is a Fellow of the fourth class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
José Rafael Rivera
Jose Rafael Rivera Ferrari is a partner at Consortium Centroamérica Abogados, Honduras. He has been a contact attorney for various local and multinational companies and institutions, regarding mainly corporate and commercial law matters. His practice areas also include Commercial Law, Insurance Law, Agency and Distributorship, Franchise Law, Trademarks, Patents, Antitrust, Copyright, Civil Litigation, and Administrative Law. Mr. Rivera is a member of the Board of Directors of several Honduran companies and of Consortium Centroamérica Abogados, a regional law firm formed by five of the top law firms from Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and specializes in Corporate Law. He graduated with highest honors from the National University of Honduras School of Law in 1994, joined his law firm and was admitted to the Honduran bar that same year. He holds a Masters of Law (LL.M) from the University of Chicago School of Law, where he studied as a Fulbright Scholar and specialized in Economic Analysis of Law with a background in Corporate Finance. Mr. Rivera and his wife and three children live in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. He is a Fellow of the second class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. Jose designed PADRE, acronym for Paternidad Responsable para Vivir Mejor (Paternal Responsibility to Live Better). It provides ideological and educational background and support for the institution(s) already in the field working for family planning in Honduras.
José Roberto Paredes
is the founder of Cincopatasalgato, an internationally recognized architecture, interior and furniture design studio. He co-founded Regional, an international architecture collaborative with bases in New York, Guatemala and San Salvador and The Carrot Concept, a gallery, workspace, shop, and a café which encourages and supports innovative Salvadoran design. Jose Roberto’s work has been featured in international publications including Dwell Magazine, Architectural Digest Mexico and Spain, Madame Figaro in France, and Ëvivre. In 2015, Alexa Magazine of the New York Post named Cincopatasalgato one of Òthe 4 edgiest architects designing around the world.Ó In 2014 and 2016, he was nominated for the Mies Crown Hall American Prize, and has been part of several exhibitions including Arquitectura Irreverente in Mexico City, POST POST POST Nueva Arquitectura Iberoamericana in Buenos Aires, and New Territories in The Museum of Art and Design in New York City. He received his architecture degree from Universidad Albert Einstein in El Salvador and post-graduate degree in interior design from Universidad Politécnica de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain. José Roberto is a Fellow of the 13th class of the Central America Leadership Initiative and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.
José Tomás Calderón-González
is the Founder and Managing Director of Interlex, a law firm specializing in Strategic Law Planning and Coordination, as well as Corporate Law. He is also Co-Founder of Soluciones Laborales, a division of Interlex that focuses on labor solutions for companies. José Tomás is member of the Board of Directors of the National Representative Private Sector Commission for the political party ARENA, and participates directly in its Research and Development Division. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Proyecto País, a non-profit private initiative that focuses on the development of youth in El Salvador; Coatepeque Foundation, dedicated to environmental conservation of the Lake Coatepeque; Hilda Rothschild Foundation, dedicated to providing solutions for women to escape poverty and social disadvantage, and the Foundation for Democracy, Transparency and Justice (DTJ) focused on institutional strengthening of El Salvador. He is part of Entrepreneur´s Organization (EO), a global network of business owners. His commentaries are published regularly in La Prensa Gráfica, one of the newspapers with highest circulation in El Salvador. José Tomás is a native of San Salvador, El Salvador, were he happily resides with his family.
José Tomás Regalado
is the President of the Board of Directors of Hidroexpo, an agricultural operation that grows and exports greenhouse-grown vegetables. He is Managing Director at REGPA, a family business which manages coffee farms and a coffee mill in Santa Ana, El Salvador. He sits on the board at CASSA (Compañía Azucarera Salvadoreña), which operates two sugar mills in El Salvador. Within his business endeavors, Tomás is committed to deepening the culture of social and environmental responsibility in the agricultural sector, and with this ideal in mind, he participates actively in civil society organizations, such as FUNDAZUCAR, the foundation of the Asociación Azucarera de El Salvador (Sugar Association of El Salvador), which is dedicated to strengthening the sustainability of the sugar industry’s value chain. He is also on the board of Directors of FUNDEMAS (Fundación Empresarial para la Acción Social), a nonprofit that disseminates the culture of social responsibility and sustainability in the Salvadoran private sector. For 10 years, he was the chef / owner of Alo Nuestro, a gourmet Salvadoran restaurant. He has a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from The Edmund A. Walsh School at Georgetown University and an MBA from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. He is married and has three children.
Juan Antonio Robles Alvarado
In 2004 the architect Juan Robles founded the architecture firm ROBLESARQ which is composed by a team that lives a progressive culture where the only constant is innovation.
Juan was chosen by the Architecture Foundation of Australia as part of the exclusive list of the prestigious architects Master’s class taught by the Pritzker Prize, Glenn Murcutt in Australia in 2006, based primarily on sustainable architecture.
His work has been published in international journals and books as Architectural Digest, Tropical Houses, 150 Best Eco House Ideas, Pure Luxury and True Colors among others.
At the same time he has received important awards such as the First Prize of the VII Biennale of Caribbean Architecture in 2009 in Cuba and in 2010 at the Tenth International Architecture Biennale held in Costa Rica, received the First Steel Award and the First Prize in Architectural Design.
Meanwhile, the architect Juan Robles has exhibited at major events like the FID 1 and CAPAC Forum in Panama and has also been a visiting professor at the University TEC de Monterrey in Mexico and FADU in Argentina.
Currently the studio is designing projects in different areas of Costa Rica, Mexico and Texas, USA where services are provided in Planning, Architecture and LEED Certification.