meet the team
president and CEO
Cid Wilson serves as the president and CEO of the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR), a position he has held since 2014. His nearly three decades of corporate leadership and inclusion advocacy drive HACR’s mission of advancing Hispanic inclusion in Corporate America. His extensive interaction with our nation’s most prominent executive leaders drives his strategy to assure our voice and presence in support of diversity and inclusion in the areas of employment, procurement, philanthropy, and governance.
After working his way from the mailroom to the executive suite, he earned national recognition in 2006 when Forbes named him the #1 Wall Street equity financial analyst in his field. Wilson has been featured and quoted by news media and numerous publications, including The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, USA Today, The New York Times, Bloomberg TV, Yahoo! Finance, and many others. He has been featured on the cover of both Black Enterprise magazine and LATINO magazine, making him one of the few Afro-Latinos with cover stories in both publications.
Wilson was appointed by President Barack Obama to the National Museum of the American Latino Study Commission. He served as board chair of the Friends of the National Museum of the American Latino from 2012-2016 and in 2020 successfully supported the historic passage of the American Latino Museum Act in Congress. This act guarantees a future Smithsonian American Latino Museum on the National Mall in Washington, DC. His passion for service is exemplified through board memberships with leading advocacy groups, including LatinoJustice PRLDEF, UnidosUS (formerly NCLR), and Dominicans on Wall Street (DOWS). He is the former national president of the Dominican American National Roundtable and a Gold Life Member of the NAACP. He serves on the Steering Committee of the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion.
Wilson graduated from The Ohio State University with a degree in economics. He serves on multiple corporate boards and corporate advisory boards has been a featured speaker at some of the world’s most prominent conferences, including the World Economic Forum.
SYLVIA PÉREZ CASH
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, OPERATIONS
Sylvia Pérez Cash works alongside HACR CEO Cid Wilson to support organizational culture, strategy, and vision and steers HACR’s operational processes and policies. As a result of her over 15-year career in nonprofit management, Pérez Cash has developed a dedication to racial and economic equity, social justice, and empowerment. She is best known for work in the areas of change management, problem solving, and facilitation of collaborative initiatives between multiple stakeholders.
Sylvia has held executive leadership positions for the last 10 years, including vice president of governance and international affairs and chief of staff at the Cleveland Foundation, the largest grant-making organization in Ohio, and the vice president of strategic programs and knowledge at the United Way of Greater Cleveland. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies and Sociology from Columbia University and a Masters in Public Administration from Baruch College, City University of New York. She was a National Urban Fellow and Atlas Service Corps Fellow, in Cleveland, OH, and Bogotá, Colombia, respectively, and is a proud member of Sigma Lambda Upsilon/Señoritas Latinas Unidas Sorority, Inc.
VICE PRESIDENT, STRATEGIC ENGAGEMENT AND INITIATIVES
Yai Vargas leads the strategy development and execution of custom diversity, equity, and inclusion training and development programs for HACR’s member organizations and other corporate stakeholders.
Yai joins HACR with over 15 years of professional experience in multicultural marketing, diversity and inclusion strategy, and community engagement. Prior to joining HACR, Yai ran a successful DE&I consulting business designing inclusive programs for increased productivity, employee engagement, and culture change. Her expertise focused on organizational assessments, strategic planning and training, and development. Yai also spent nine years in corporate financial services developing diverse marketing initiatives for sales and recruiting.
Yai sits on the benefit board for The Latino Commission on AIDS and is founder of The Latinista, a national organization for Latinas and women of color invested in career and leadership development.
Vanessa Bowling Ajavon
Director, Administration and Human Resources
Vanessa Bowling Ajavon is the Director of Administration and Human Resources at HACR. She joined the team as the Executive and Operations Assistant to the President and CEO in 2014 and has also worked as HACR’s Manager of Operations, Manager of Administration, and Senior Manager of Human Resources and Administration. In her current position, she leads all HR initiatives and procedures for the organization, maintains employee relations strategies, and manages all aspects of hiring, onboarding, team building, payroll, and employee benefits.
Bowling Ajavon was previously the Office Manager and Executive Assistant for Equality Maryland. While there, she honed her skills in event planning, graphic design, and marketing and advertising development. Bowling Ajavon holds a bachelor’s degree in telecommunications from Morgan State University and a master’s degree in publications design from the University of Baltimore. In her spare time, she owns and operates a woman-focused travel agency.
Director of corporate ACCOUNTABILITY
As the Director of Corporate Accountability, Eric Lopez directs and executes the research that identifies diversity and inclusion best practices and is responsible for sharing those findings with Corporate America. He creates opportunities for corporations to achieve goals in talent management, supplier diversity, community investment, and leadership diversification.
He was previously HACR’s Senior Manager of Research and joined the organization in 2015 as Manager of Research. Prior to his work at HACR, Lopez was the founder and CEO of GlobeServe Consulting, an analytics, fundraising, and event coordinating service for nonprofit and for-profit organizations in Washington, D.C. His research and advocacy skills have helped propel the missions of nationally recognized organizations such as the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, the National Council of La Raza, and the Equal Rights Center.
Lopez received bachelor’s degrees in philosophy, history, and psychology and a master’s degree in applied social science and policy analysis from Hofstra University in New York. He is a 2008 Fulbright grant recipient, which funded his study of the discrimination of the Roma in Hungary. In 2020, he was one of 12 charitable sector leaders chosen to complete the American Express NGen Fellowship, a nine-month program focused on adaptive leadership, systems change, and racial equity.
Senior Graphic Designer
Briana Wright has been HACR’s graphic designer for HACR since 2016. In this role, she creates visual concepts that motivate, inform, and attract the organization’s internal and external stakeholders. This includes designing web pages, print and web banners, digital advertisements, brochures, logos, booklets, newsletters, annual reports, and other marketing collateral. She maintains HACR’s visual brand.
Before joining HACR, Wright worked as a freelance designer in the corporate and nonprofit sectors for businesses such as M.O. Marketing and Event Solutions and Maria Luisa de Moreno International Fund. She most recently designed templates, logos, and print and digital content for 123rf.com, a stock content agency. Wright received her bachelor’s degree in fine arts and graphic design from The Art Institute of Washington in 2013.
MANAGER, Data Analytics
As the data analytics manager, Alida Minkel tracks and analyzes metrics related to HACR research, outreach, member participation, and more. She is also the main contributor to the HACR Research Institute (HRI) blog and leads HACR’s Latina-specific research efforts. She joined HACR in 2017 as a corporate relations associate, where she analyzed member activity to assist with fundraising, membership growth, and retention. Prior to joining HACR, Alida was the development associate at Community Impact, where she secured financial support for the organization. She was also a campaign fellow for then-presidential candidate Barack Obama’s 2012 “Get Out the Vote” efforts, where she coordinated community events, training, and volunteer scheduling in Southwest Bucks County, a crucial district in the battleground state of Pennsylvania. She has extensive experience running proactive data analysis, developing creative solutions, and conducting primary source analysis.
Stephany Guachamin Coyago
Stephany Guachamin Coyago joined HACR as Programs Associate in 2018 and now leads the development and execution of HACR’s leadership advancement programs, including Young Hispanic Corporate Achievers™, which recognizes and trains high-potential young Hispanic professionals in Corporate America in an annual conference.
She is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer who served in the highlands of Peru, where she helped develop sustainable community projects and encouraged young people to become community leaders by emphasizing the importance of higher education. Guachamin Coyago also served as an AmeriCorps Volunteer teaching phonemic awareness to English Language Learners (ELL). She was born and raised in the Washington D.C., metropolitan area and earned her bachelor’s degree in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Manager, Communications and Media Relations
Rachael Whitten joined HACR as Manager of Communications and Media Relations in June 2020. She develops HACR’s brand through messaging that reflects its mission of improved Hispanic representation in corporate workplaces. This includes guiding marketing strategies, creating content that aligns with our core values, and promoting the organization through print and digital channels. She is also the point of contact for media outreach and press releases.
Rachael started her career in editorial writing for Richmond magazine, followed by marketing copywriting for a data analytics firm. She continues to work on freelance writing projects in her spare time and has enjoyed advocacy work through programs such as Literacy in the Family, which improves literacy skills for English Language Learners (ELL), and N Street Village, an organization that helps homeless and low-income women in Washington, D.C., achieve stability. She received a B.A. in Creative Writing with a minor in Spanish Language and Literature from Virginia Tech.
As HACR’s Membership Engagement Specialist, Ileana Ruiz is the primary contact for over 80 corporate members and maintains a portfolio of member data, donations, and engagement profiles. She increases HACR member engagement and retention by overseeing membership benefits, disseminating organizational updates, and representing HACR at external events. Insights from these roles help her support program design and event logistics.
Ruiz joined HACR in 2017 and has held the titles of Administrative Assistant and Corporate Relations Associate. Prior to these positions, Ruiz was a file clerk for Beermann, one of the largest family law firms in the State of Illinois. Her foray into diversity and inclusion began as an intern with the Bradley University Office of Diversity and Inclusion, where she developed their first annual Hispanic Heritage Month calendar. She was also an intern for Nuestra Tele Noticias 24 Horas and the Hispanic Heritage Foundation. Ruiz earned bachelor’s degrees in political science and Spanish from Bradley University.
MANAGER, Executive Programs
Adriana Phaneuf joined the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR) team as an Administrative Assistant in July 2019 and took over as Executive Programs associate in January 2020. She is currently the manager of Executive Programs. She serves as the primary contact for external stakeholders and provides technical and logistical support for conferences, travel itineraries, speaking engagements, and all other programmatic matters. Phaneuf’s first experience with HACR was as a college student serving as the organizations’ communication intern.
Phaneuf comes from Venezuela with a background in communications. Throughout her different roles, she has implemented communication strategies to generate results. She graduated from Dr. Rafael Belloso Chacin University with a B.A. in Mass Communications and a minor in Public Relations and Promotions. She also received a degree in marketing from Northern Virginia Community College, where she was awarded a scholarship from NOVA’s marketing program.
LAIA GARCIA GINER
Laia Garcia Giner joined HACR in February 2021 as the executive assistant to CEO Cid Wilson. She manages the scheduling and organization of Wilson’s meetings, conferences, and travel, and performs other other administrative duties for the executive team. Laia is from Barcelona, Spain, where she received a degree in business management and a B.A. in digital marketing and communications. She also received a certificate in marketing from Georgetown University in collaboration with the American Marketing Association.
Before joining HACR, Laia worked for the U.S. government at the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration in Washington, D.C., where she served as executive assistant to three successive governors of Puerto Rico. Prior to moving to D.C., she worked as an executive assistant for several large companies in Barcelona. In her spare time, you can find Laia drawing, working out, or hiking with friends.
Shané Slye is the Administrative Assistant to CEO Cid Wilson and the executive team. She manages scheduling, travel, correspondence, and bookings for the executives. Slye previously attended Montgomery College, then transitioned to her passion of hair styling and completed cosmetology school. She worked as a stylist for five years before shifting her focus to the corporate world following the birth of her son. She worked as an administrator at the Verizon headquarters before starting in the nonprofit space. Slye returns to school for business administration in spring 2021.