Local Hero: Raul & Maria Salinas

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"Changing communities to create a better world is not just an individual responsibility, but a personal and satisfying journey."

Maris F. Salinas

Advocating on issues facing women has been a defining role for Maria S. Salinas throughout her work in the community. Along with her husband Raul F. Salinas, the couple shares her and his passion for working in underserved communities that need a voice. Maria and Raul have worked in partnership advocating on issues affecting women and minorities in public and private sectors.

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She is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University (LMU) and a Certified Public Accountant. She managed audit clients at Ernst & Young and held financial roles with global responsibilities at The Walt Disney Company. In 2006, she launched her own consulting firm, Salinas Consulting, LLC, an accounting and finance project management firm. With nearly 20 years of experience, Salinas provides expertise in financial planning and reporting, and in complex regulatory control issues and compliance management.

Upon graduating LMU, Salinas embarked on a journey of community service. She quickly found her way to HOPE, Hispanas Organized for Political Equality, a leading organization that promotes the advancement of Latinas in government and business. Salinas is recognized as a HOPE founder and served as its President. Under her leadership, the organization tackled issues involving access to health care, education, and economic development. She was honored by the Los Angeles County Commission for Women for advocating women's rights.

Realizing that access to capital remains a big challenge for minority communities, Salinas has also worked for economic empowerment. After the LA riots, she assisted Rebuild LA in developing a community loan fund. Today, Salinas is a board member of Promerica Bank, the first Hispanic owned business bank opened in more than 30 years in Los Angeles County. She brings her expertise in finance and serves on its Audit and Loan Committee.

Salinas's community service has included working on numerous boards such as the LMU's Mexican American Alumni Association, Angeles Girl Scout Council, and San Gabriel Valley American Red Cross. In 2003, Maria and Raul were recognized by the United Latino Fund for their outstanding service to the Latino community.

Aside from her professional and community achievements, Salinas's most important role is being the mother to her four boys: Alejandro, Nicholas, Francisco and Gabriel. Together with Raul, they are active members of their children's activities which includes scouting, sports, and music to name a few.

Raul F. Salinas

Strengthening the voices of underserved communities is a fundamental objective in giving back to the community for Raul F. Salinas. That's why, along with wife Maria S. Salinas, the couple has made it their mission to give back to the community through their work with nonprofit organizations that aim to fill voids in our communities. Together, they have advocated for the advancement of women and minorities in business, government and education.

He is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University (LMU) and received his juris doctorate from Georgetown University Law Center in 1985. With more than 20 years of experience in law, he is the Managing Partner of Adorno Yoss Alvarado & Smith's Los Angeles office, the nation's largest minority-owned law firm. Salinas's extensive experience includes representing public and private sector clients in a wide array of complex business, employment, public law matters and various civil litigation proceedings.

A product of South Central Los Angeles and raised in South Gate, Salinas also serves as its City Attorney. Through his office, he has assisted city leaders to bring pride back to that community.

Salinas's philanthropic efforts originate with a sense of responsibility to give back to his community. Salinas served as President of LMU's Mexican American Alumni Association and was instrumental in creating an endowment fund for scholarships for Latino students. In 1998, he received the Alumni Role Model Award from LMU's Mexican American Alumni Association, and in 2008, received the prestigious Los Angeles Leaders Award from LMU. He is a founder of the California Hispanic Corporate Council Leadership Institute, an organization whose mission is to increase minority and women representation in senior management positions in the corporate sector.

Salinas is also a member of the Governing Board of White Memorial Hospital in Boyle Heights. He has played an instrumental role in the growth of the hospital both in achieving fundraising milestones and has been at the forefront of quality care initiatives. In 2001, the hospital recognized Salinas as Man of the Year for his work in the community.

Salinas has served on numerous nonprofit boards such as Los Angeles Universal Preschool, East LA YMCA, East LA Classic Theater and San Gabriel Valley Boy Scout Council.

Raul and Maria make their home in Pasadena with their four boys, Alejandro, Nicholas, Francisco and Gabriel.

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