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Latino Thought Makers inspires the future leaders of America through this positive, powerfully uplifting and motivational platform.

In its first three years, Latino Thought Makers has featured an important array of insightful, inspirational and trailblazing guests, including:

  • Edward James Olmos

    Actor Producer

  • Judy Reyes

    Actor

  • Danny Trejo

    Actor

  • Cheech Marin

    Comedian

  • Lisa Vidal

    Actor

  • Diane Guerrero

    Actress

  • Dolores Huerta

    Civil Rights Leader

  • Marco Antonio Rigil

    Game Show Host/Activist

  • Lalo Alcaraz

    Cartoonist

  • Julissa Arce

    Writer

  • Myrka Dellanos

    Journalist

  • Joe Menendez

    Film Director

  • Horatio Sanz

    Comedian/SNL

  • Esai Morales

    Actor

  • Carla Jimenez

    Actor

  • Dr. Aidyl S. Gonzalez- Serricchio

    Scientist

  • Alanna Ubach

    Actor

  • Emilio Rivera

    Actor

  • Luis Guzmán

    Actor

  • Louis Barajas

    Author

  • Bianca Marroquin

    Actor

  • Gabriela Tagliavini

    Writer

  • Jill-Michele Meleán

    Comic

  • Fernando Allende

    Singer

  • Rosario Marin

    Former U.S. Treasurer

  • Jesse Garcia

    Actor

  • East Los High

    cast

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Description

  • Live interview series with interactive Q&A hosted and moderated by award-winning writer, producer, author and comedian Rick Najera
  • Showcases Latino leaders in Media and Entertainment and raises the bar on the positive image of Latinos and diversity in America
  • Delivers engaging, thought-provoking and candid conversations about critical issues facing Latinos, with a comedic twist
  • Provides rare access to insights and inspirational stories from influential Latino artists, celebrities and entertainment industry professionals
  • Addresses important issues, such as: Latinos in the Media, Immigration, Social Justice, Career & Life Choices and Inspirational Success Stories

Latino Thought Makers fills a void.
Latinos in the U.S. are:

  • 60.5 million Hispanics live in the United States, representing 18.4 percent of the U.S. total population
  • Largest, fastest-growing ethnic group in America with 1.5 trillion in buying power
  • 1 in 4 Latinos in the U.S. are under age 17; 93% of Latino children are U.S. citizens
Rick Najera new

Rick Najera is an award-winning screenwriter, actor, director, producer, sketch comedian, author, playwright, coach and national speaker with an expansive portfolio of credits in all forms of entertainment. He has received numerous industry awards for his work.

From starring in films with Sidney Poitier, George Clooney and most recently Mario Lopez, to writing sketch comedy for Jim Carrey and Jamie Foxx, Najera is best known for starring on Broadway in his award-winning, self-penned stageplay, Latinologues, directed by comedy legend Cheech Marin. Najera is only one of three Latinos to ever write and star in their own play on Broadway.

As a screenwriter, Najera has written dozens of scripts for TV, film and the stage, starting out in the industry as a staff writer on the groundbreaking urban comedy series, In Living Color, for which he wrote more than( 30 episodes). Najera went on to write for Townsend TV (10 episodes), MAD TV (47 episodes), East Los High – a Hulu original (21 episodes)  and numerous TV pilots and more. He penned the feature film Nothing Like the Holidays starring Debra Messing, Alfred Molina, John Leguizamo and Luis Guzman, which won him an ALMA Award.  And was nominated by Congressman Joaquin Castro to be placed in the  permanent Congressional record. Najera learned from great writers like Spike Lee, Quentin Tarantino and Scorsese to “write what you know’ and has been a pioneer in Hollywood telling his American experience, from a Latino perspective.

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Paulina, born in El Paso, Texas, is a Mexican-American Actress who has appeared in various local short films, voice-overs, and played Carmen in Rooster Teeth's first drama series Day 5, and also landed the role of young Kim Kardashian in the TV series, Scandal Made Me Famous. She is currently part of Netflix's Fate: "The Winx Saga in Season 2," which completed production in County Wicklow, Ireland.

Rick Najera’s Latino Thought Makers Series at Morton College hosts American award-winning film, stage, television and voice actress-comedienne Natasha Perez

November 11, 2021

 Natasha Perez, an award-winning film, stage, television and voice actress-comedienne, is the next guest of Rick Najera’s live nationally acclaimed interview series, Latino Thought Makers, at 6:30 p.m. Friday, November 12th, in Morton College’s Jedlicka Performing Arts Center, 3801 S. Central Avenue, Cicero. The event is free and open to the public. Complimentary tickets are …

Rick Najera’s Latino Thought Makers Series at Morton College hosts American award-winning film, stage, television and voice actress-comedienne Natasha Perez Read More »

Rick Najera’s Latino Thought Makers Series at Morton College hosts Special Conversation with Dr. Cornel West Reimagining Unity: Past, Present, Future

October 6, 2021

Dr. Cornel West, a renowned educator, philosopher, author and activist, is the next guest of Rick Najera’s live nationally acclaimed interview series, Latino Thought Makers, at 6:30 p.m. Friday, October 22nd, in Morton College’s Jedlicka Performing Arts Center, 3801 S. Central Avenue, Cicero. The event is free and open to the public. Complimentary tickets are …

Rick Najera’s Latino Thought Makers Series at Morton College hosts Special Conversation with Dr. Cornel West Reimagining Unity: Past, Present, Future Read More »

Rick Najera’s Latino Thought Makers Series at Morton College Kicks-Off Hispanic Heritage Month with Multi-Award Actor Luis Guzman

August 24, 2021

Award-winning actor Luis Guzmán, who was just announced as a leading cast member of Netflix’s Wednesday –  Tim Burton’s live-action Addams Family series –  will be the first guest of Rick Najera’s nationally acclaimed interview series, Latino Thought Makers on Friday, September 24th at 6:30pm live at Morton College’s Jedlicka Performing Arts Center, 3801 S Central Ave, Cicero, IL …

Rick Najera’s Latino Thought Makers Series at Morton College Kicks-Off Hispanic Heritage Month with Multi-Award Actor Luis Guzman Read More »

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