Home Wisconsin Sí Se Puede 2021: Wisconsin’s 36 Most Influential Latino Leaders, Part 2

Sí Se Puede 2021: Wisconsin’s 36 Most Influential Latino Leaders, Part 2


This is the second of a five-part series. Part 1 is here

Juan Gomez is Vice President, Lending and Investments at Madison Development Corporation, a nonprofit organization that provides affordable, workforce housing and attainable business loans to the residents and businesses of Dane County. He assumed that role earlier this year after two years as capital finance officer for the State of Wisconsin and five years as technology investment manager for the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics in 2010 and MBA in 2015, both from UW-Whitewater.

Richie Morales is a self-taught visual artist originally from Guatemala. He has served as an artist in residence at Centro Hispano of Dane County, The Bubbler and Madison Public Library. He curated and coordinated the Latino Art Fair for the Latino Chamber of Commerce in 2018. Over the past decade he has exhibited at many spaces including Overture Center for the Arts, the Center for Social Justice, the Lincoln Belmont Public Library Branch in Chicago, and more, and was the Featured Artist at the YWCA Madison Annual Racial Justice Summit in 2015.

Elsa Díaz-Bautista is Executive Director at Alianza Latina Aplicando Soluciones (ALAS) in Milwaukee, and organization that seeks to promote the independence of individual with disabilities by providing information and support to them, their families and their service providers education, health and other areas. She joined the organization as a training coordinator in 2014 and took over as executive director just five months later. She previously worked as the Hispanic employment manager at the Federal Aviation Administration, a business consultant at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, and others. She earned degrees in engineering and physical sciences in 1994 and MBA in 1997, all from Kansas State University.

Laura Gutiérrez currently serves as the Executive Director at the United Community Center in Milwaukee. She returned in 2019 after many years there previously in a variety of roles including Assistant Principal and Director of Instruction at Bruce Guadalupe Community School, as well as classroom teacher and a Drug Prevention Outreach worker when she was just a teen at UCC’s New Beginnings Clinic. Just prior to returning to UCC, Laura was appointed Secretary of the Department of Safety and Professional Services for the state of Wisconsin in 2017. In this position she led a staff of more than 250, and managed a biennial budget of $100M. She grew up in Milwaukee and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Carroll College and a Master of Arts in Leadership and Policy from Marquette University. 

Robert Miranda is spokesperson for the Milwaukee-based non-profit organization Freshwater For Life Action Coalition (FLAC), which has been spearheading efforts to achieve policy changes in the Milwaukee Health Department, ensure the full replacement of lead service lines, and improve the local water utility’s approach to lead in drinking water. A longtime activist and advocate for Wisconsin’s Latinos, he also served as editor of the Spanish Journal.

Olga Diaz is Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Student Affairs at UW-Eau Claire, a role she just assumed this past summer. She came to Wisconsin from California, where she was director of student success and equity at Palomar College in San Marcos since 2015. She was familiar with the area before taking the job, though — her husband is native to Eau Claire and her father-in-law was a philosophy professor at UWEC. In addition to her duties as director of student success and equity at Palomar College, Diaz also took on the administrative role as interim dean of counseling for two years. Prior to her work at Palomar College, Diaz was director of employment services at Interfaith Community Services in North San Diego County and was a senior research analyst at Santa Clara University. Diaz also was involved in her community as she was the first elected person of color on the City Council in Escondido, California, where she served for 12 years. Diaz received her bachelor’s degree in accounting from Santa Clara University and her master’s degree in public administration from San Diego State University. She is enrolled in a doctoral program in organizational change and leadership at the University of Southern California.

Dr. German Gonzalez is director of the Great Lakes Inter Tribal Epidemiology Center in Lac du Flambeau. Dr. Gonzalez has been actively involved in the infection control field; he worked with the Georgia Infection Prevention Network as Public Health Liaison for the board of directors, and served as consultant for ICPs across GA. In addition, Dr. Gonzalez has promoted the advance of public health informatics at different levels, as public health practitioner and doctoral level professor of health and public health informatics at Walden University and through his participation in several different groups and workgroups at national level. In 2015 Dr. Gonzalez was advanced to the rank of Fellow at the American College of Epidemiology. Dr. Gonzalez has served as Official member of the Public Health Information Network (PHIN) – InfoLinks CoP, official CoP Council (CoPC) member. NACCHO’s Public Health Informatics and Biosurveilance workgroups and BioSense Governance Group. Dr. Gonzalez served as a member of the ePublic Health Informatics Workgroup (as SME) at NACCHO, and since August 2017, as the NACCHO representative at International Network for Epidemiology in Policy – INEP (formerly known as The International Joint Policy Committee of the Societies of Epidemiology [JPC-SE]) until he moved to the Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Epidemiology Center.

Part 3 coming tomorrow!