A decade older.

A decade wiser.

2018 ANNUAL REPORT

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REFLECTION 

Letter from Our President

The Young Leaders Society (YLS) was founded 10 years ago with the belief that our region’s young professionals, with the support of the community, could rise to be the next generation of philanthropic and civic leaders. What began as a small group of individuals seeking personal and professional development, has become a strong donor network of 300 young professionals who are making their mark on our community. 

 

Our membership is as diverse as our community. From students and recent graduates who are getting their footing in the workplace, to seasoned professionals who are taking their craft to the next level. We enjoy the participation of members from a variety of professions. From those climbing corporate ladders in national and local companies to those following their dreams as entrepreneurs with small and big ventures. YLS is helping current and future leaders take control of their destinies and more importantly, the El Paso community.  

 

Together, we are individuals who are determined to build a stronger community, mold gratifying careers and improve the overall quality of life for every resident in the region. We are intentionally part of a group, that through the United Way of El Paso County, is afforded the ability to help children, families, and individuals access the resources and services they need to lead better lives. 

 

On behalf of the YLS Advisory Board, we can’t thank you enough for helping us build a future where our community’s young professionals will prosper through leadership development, volunteerism and networking. The past 10 years have been a rewarding journey and we look forward to kicking off another decade in 2019. 

Adrian Santiago

ADVISORY BOARD PRESIDENT 

MEMBERS

Advisory Board

ADRIAN
SANTIAGO
 
Chair 
WestStar
CHRISTOPHER
MONTOYA
 
Incoming Chair 
Wells Fargo
RUBEN
AHEDO
 
Immediate Past Chair
Federal Reserve Bank Dallas Branch - El Paso
THOMAS
GABRIEL
 
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
EMILIO
HOLGUIN
 
The Surfing Penguin 
MARITZA
LOPEZ-HOLGUIN
 
University Medical Center of
El Paso/El Paso Health
CHELSEA
LYNCH 
 
The Hospitals of Providence - Sierra Campus
BRENDAN
MARCUM-CARTER
 
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
ANGELINA 
RODRIGUEZ
 
El Paso Electric
CINDY 
SOSA
 
Community Volunteer
NICK
SECKERSON
 
El Paso Chihuahuas
DAVID
VALENZUELA
 
Texas Gas
ALEX
YU
 
TFCU

Inform, empower, and engage young professionals who are looking to take their careers and passions to the next level while serving the El Paso community.

El Paso’s young professionals are ready to claim their role as up-and-coming, civic and philanthropic leaders. 

Our Mission

WE BELIEVE

VALUES

Our Approach

LEAD
NETWORK
VOLUNTEER

2018

Our Events

We placed a greater emphasis on providing a selection of quality and inspirational events throughout 2018 including: 

REALIZE BOARD TRAINING PROGRAM

Speaker: Elke Cumming, Executive Director of the Paso del Norte Center of Hope

Date: May 1st, 2018

Location: Paso Del Norte Health Foundation

The event focused on the roles and responsibilities of board members.  The event was in anticipation of the yearly recruiting phase that most of El Paso’s nonprofits go through to nominate new members to their board of directors. 

ON THE MENU: 

KICKSTARTING A 

KICKSTARTER

Speaker: Tyler & Michelle Savage

Date: June 13th, 2018

Location: Stanton Tower

This lunch and learn was focused on giving our Young Leaders insight into the business boom in El Paso. The On the Menu series began with Savage Goods duo Tyler and Michelle Savage, who led the second largest Kickstarter campaign in El Paso to open a brick and mortar bakery in Sunset Heights. They taught our members how to use Kickstarter, an online platform that offers a method of asking for public support. Tyler and Michelle Savage shared tips of running a successful business, entrepreneurship and more.   

ADVOCACY

TRAINING

Speaker: Jason Sabo & Mandi Kimball

Date: August 28th, 2018

Location: Stanton Tower

Jason Sabo , founder of Frontera Strategy in Austin, Texas and Mandi Kimball , Director of Public Policy and Government Affairs with Children at Risk in Houston, Texas talked about how the legislator works in El Paso, how our city can maximize political influence, and how you can take your interests to the next level by becoming an advocate.  

DOWNTOWN ARTWALK

Speaker: Adair Margo

Date: October 10th, 2018

Location: El Paso Public Library Auditorium 

 

Downtown Art Walk with Adair Margo was a joint event of the Young Leaders Society and RISE where our members enjoyed a leisurely walk and presentation through downtown and viewed some of our city’s most historic pieces of art with the First Lady of El Paso, Adair Margo.

 

HOLIDAY

MIXER

Date: December 13th, 2018

Location: Tin Man Montecillo

The Young Leaders Society (YLS) and RISE came together to host  one last event before the end of the year to celebrate the growth and development of each group.

WINE & WISDOM

Our signature series allows guests to participate in insightful conversations with the community’s top leaders who share their experiences and bits of wisdom. 

OUR MAIN EVENT

ENGAGE Young Professionals Leadership Summit 

SPEAKERS

THE COLLABORATORS
PANEL 
  • Aimee Olivas – Business Retention & Expansion Specialist, City of El Paso 

  • Joe Gudenrath – Executive Director of El Paso Downtown Management District

  • Chelsea Lamego – Director of Operations, Office of Asset Management at UTEP

  • Omar Yanar – Founder and CEO, El Paso Leadership Academy

THE SOCIAL INNOVATORS PANEL
  • Dr. Carlos Martinez-Vela – President and CEO, The Hub of Human Innovation

  • Cathy Chen – Co-Founder and Director, Fab Lab El Paso

  • Jonathan “J.J.” Childress – Community Engagement Manager, Microsoft TechSpark – El Paso

  • Dr. Ebuetal “Beto” Pallares – Managing Director and Co-Founder, Co-Work Oasis

  • Brandon Silverstein – Partner and Senior Web Developer, Viva + Impulse Creative Co. 

THE CREATIVE CLASS
PANEL 
  • Bryan Crowe – General Manager , Destination El Paso

  • Ben Fyffe – Assistant Director, City of El Paso Museum and Cultural Affairs Department

  • Patrick McNeil – Executive Producer and Owner, Neon Desert Music Festival

  • Marina Monsisvais – Founder & Owner, Barracuda PR

THE VISIONARIES
PANEL 
  • Laurie Banitch – Director of Corporate Outreach, UTEP

  • Rida Asfahani, AIA, LEED AP – Owner, Root Architects

  • Laura Rodriguez – Principal and Founder, The Raben Group

  • Ruben Vogt – El Paso County Judge

PARTNERS

SPONSORS

Title

Gold

Silver

ENGAGE is a half–day of insightful talks from some of the region’s most seasoned leaders and up-and-coming thinkers and doers. This year, the summit was divided into four panels (The Social Innovators, The Collaborators, The Creative Class and The Visionaries) that were carefully curated to meet the interests of our region’s young professionals. Speakers were primed to share real-world, practical knowledge that could transcend any sector. All our guests had the opportunity to make connections with incredibly passionate and driven young professionals during our breaks or at the end-of-day mixer.

In 2019, we’ll be focused on expanding our network in order to better serve more young professionals across the city and across different sectors of business. We’ve taken feedback and input from members to develop a calendar of events focused on entertaining, enlightening and informing our members all while hearing from the best of the best in our community. We hope to continue to build the next generation of philanthropists who understand the ties between civic engagement and the betterment of our community. 

HERE'S TO ANOTHER

DECADE & MORE.

Vision for 2019

DAVID

VALENZUELA

TEXAS GAS

I decided to become a member of the Young Leaders Society not only because I want to help the community, but also, I want to set the example to young professionals, like me. Change can only be done if we are committed to achieve it.

ANGIE 

RODRIGUEZ

EL PASO ELECTRIC

I see a lot of good changes happening in El Paso and I thought that I want to be a part of this great movement. I attended one of the Wine & Wisdom events and learned that Young Leaders Society was the organization that engages and empowers young professionals in El Paso to work together to improve our community. Through this organization, I met many like-minded individuals and I thought to myself that if we work together, we will achieve greater things for this community than if we work on our own. I feel privileged to serve on the Advisory Board of Young Leaders and will continue to work on bringing more people together to make the El Paso community a better place to live.

CHRISTOPHER 

MONTOYA

WELLS FARGO

I decided to join Young Leaders Society (YLS) because I feel it is important to invest in yourself and continue to grow professionally. YLS has provided great learning experiences and workshops that I can apply in real life. It has also provided excellent networking opportunities and I have been able to build new friendships with other young professionals. We have a vision for the future of El Paso! 

TESTIMONIALS

What Members are Saying