Portada’s Brand Star Committee is a highly regarded group of brand marketing executives that are very enthusiastic about targeting consumers through cultural insights and passion points.

Read the FAQ about the Council System!

Ward Bullard
Committee Chair

Ward Bullard is a Partner at Pitchwise Holdings and Chair Emeritus of the Stanford Athletic Board. Ward previously worked at Verizon, SAP, Google, Mertado (acquired by Groupon) and Harrah’s Entertainment in product, business and marketing leadership roles, connecting the worlds of technology and entertainment.Ward is an adjunct instructor at Stanford University’s Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (the d.school), where he developed and teaches the course, “Testing at Scale: The Sports Fan Experience.” Ward graduated with degrees in both Economics and History (with Honors) from Stanford University and an MBA from Harvard University.

Jason P. Riveiro
National Director, Multicultural & Growth Markets

Riveiro brings over 20 years experience leading multinational strategic initiatives for some of the most recognized Fortune 500 companies including Toyota, Procter & Gamble and Macy’s on both the agency and client side. Prior to joining Realogy Holdings Corp, Jason served as Chief Marketing Officer for the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP). Jason is also responsible for pioneering the launch of multicultural marketing departments at Big Lots, North America’s largest closeout retailer and The Sherwin-Williams Co., the nation’s largest specialty retailer of paint and painting supplies.

Jason holds a Master of Business Administration from Xavier University, a bachelor’s degree in International Studies and Business Administration from the University of St. Thomas in Houston, TX and has completed graduate courses at the Universidad de San Pablo-CEU in Madrid, Spain.

Kristin Sánchez
Marketing Manager

For nearly 20 years, Kristin Sanchez has worked in the marketing and strategy disciplines in advertising agencies, non-profit organizations and consumer packaged goods. Currently, she is the Multicultural Marketing Manager at Nestle USA working with brands such as DiGiorno, Hot Pockets and Stouffer’s build their multicultural strategies. She holds a double major from Northwestern University in Latin American Studies and Political Science and an MBA from Georgetown University.

Alex Tokatlian
Advertising and Multicultural Marketing Manager, Domino’s
Domino’s Pizza

A classically trained marketer, Alex leads Domino´s Pizza general Marketing advertising, in addition to leading Multicultural Advertising and marketing efforts including advertising development, digital engagement, media, and retail strategy. Prior to that, he lead several key product launches including improved core toppings, and Domino’s Bread Twists. Prior to Domino’s, Alex managed several iconic brands at The Hershey Company, and also has prior experience working at the New York Stock Exchange, and Frito-Lay.

Francisco Morillo
Digital Marketing Manager – SEM & SEO

Francisco ‘Kiko’ Morillo has over 10 years of digital marketing experience with a strong focus on strategy with data-driven digital campaigns. Before joining Sprint to drive the SEM and SEO efforts, Francisco was at Xoom, a PayPal service, where he was responsible for managing digital acquisition programs through search, display, video, and app install.Previously, he worked on the agency side as a Digital Media Director and also has experience in the e-commerce industry. He has a drive for data analysis, digital marketing innovation and drive business growth.

Andres Falquez
Category Marketing Manager
GraceKennedy Ltd

Hands-on executive with 12+ years of experience in Business Development of FMCGs Food and Beverages in US and LATAM. Very focused on sustainable and profitable growth. Strategic vision supported on a solid analytical approach. Track record of success on building, leading and motivating strong teams committed to excellence. Strong communication & interpersonal skills. Specialties: Marketing and Brand Development / Trade Marketing / Innovation / Sales.

Xochitl A. Leon
Vice President, Hispanic Segment Strategy Leader
Wells Fargo

As head of the Hispanic Segment Strategy at Wells Fargo, Xochitl Leon is helping Wells Fargo understand the financial needs of the Hispanic community to drive market share, revenue growth and brand preference for the corporation. Her career has focused on business and marketing to multicultural communities in the financial services industry. Prior to joining Wells Fargo, she worked on market research and economic forecasting at Standard & Poor’s DRI and CB Richard Ellis for Latin American economies and commercial real estate, respectively.

Fabiola Velarde
US Managing Director
CH Carolina Herrera

Miss Velarde leads North America operations for Carolina Herrera’s lifestyle brand CH Carolina Herrera. Fabiola has degrees both in architecture and fashion merchandising, and combines a keen business mind with an eye for aesthetic and design. The CH Carolina Herrera brand, well established in Europe and Latin America, hired Fabiola in 2006 to spearhead the brand’s launch in the North America market. Throughout her tenure, she has played an integral role in the design of the luxury experience protocols the brand follows worldwide. Today, with stores across the US and through her leadership of a best-in-class team, Fabiola has grown the CH Carolina Herrera brand in North America to be one of the biggest and fastest growing markets for the brand.

Erendida Samaniego
Head of Marketing
El Super

At El Super, Erendida coordinates and manages all Brand marketing initiatives as well as develops marketing plans to create awareness for El Super 59 stores in 5 different states. Works very closely with VP of Purchasing and Marketing to develop Marketing plans that will have a ROI for participating brands as well as for El Super 59 Stores. Prior to El Super, she was General Manager of Mercado Activations.

Karim Amadeo
Manager Hispanic & National Advertising
Century 21 Real Estate LLC.
(Special Guest)

Highly motivated marketing communications professional with more than 15 years of experience in the industry. Leader with broad experience including public relations, advertising, special events, journalism and sales promotion. Results-oriented individual committed to exceeding goals and contributing to the company’s growth and success. Positive attitude, creative and excellent communication skills.Specialties: Public Relations, Special Events, Advertising, Marketing, Writing, Editing and Project Management.

John Sandoval
Senior Brand and Latino Marketing Manager

John is Senior Brand and Latino Marketing manager at Intuit, where he is responsible for the TurboTax brand and leads marketing strategy and tactics for the Latino market in the US. Prior to Intuit, John was founding partner of Orange USA, a boutique marketing agency growing client brands through the use of the latest marketing strategies and tactics. Prior to Orange USA, he worked at Square focusing on the growth of their Square en Espanol product offering and as a Brand Manager with Procter and Gamble.

Ariela Nerubay

Ms. Nerubay is an award-winning marketing executive with 20 years of experience launching and marketing entertainment content, films, cable networks, products and services to consumers across the U.S. and Latin America. Ms. Nerubay is currently CMO of the leading Latino Retail Superstore, Curacao, where she was hired to lead a company-wide turnaround strategy to re position the brand in the mind of its customers.
Before Curacao, Ms. Nerubay consulted for a variety of Hollywood Studios including Sony Pictures International Releasing, Aviron Pictures and Lionsgate.

Ana Lucía Soto
National Media Manager

Ana Lucía is JCPenney’s National Media Manager developing 360 total market strategies that touch every step of the marketing process, from planning to execution with over 18 years of international multidisciplinary background in Marketing and Media. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Science (LCC’98) from el Tec de Monterrey (ITESM, Campus Monterrey). Born in Mexico City, she grew up in Monterrey where she was exposed to the bi-cultural US/Mexican border dynamics. She lives in Dallas, TX.

Yonathan Bendesky
Director, Mexican Imports

Yonathan has many years as a Director of Mexican Imports at Anheuser-Busch. He was also Multicultural Manager at Pernod Ricard and Brand Manager at Amstel and Strongbow. His skills and endorsements include Brand Management, Integrated Marketing and Social Media Marketing.

Leonor Palao
Creative Brand and Advertising Leader

Recently awarded one of the 2019 Rising Stars in Financial Marketing by Gramercy Institute. Leonor is an experienced, strategic creative marketing leader passionate about building brands that have something important to say. Her approach is to cultivate strong relationships, maintain high expectations and deliver ground breaking work. Leonor´s experience includes the development of award winning communication platforms and media strategies in partnership with media, creative and experiential agencies.The story of her career started on the media agency side where she developed strategic media plans and created media programs for various brands ranging in industry from Financial, B-to-B and CPG companies. She transitioned to the client side at OppenheimerFunds 7.5 years ago to manage the development and execution of their media strategy and the creative assets tied to the firm’s brand and advertising efforts.

Edwin Hincapie
Senior Brand Manager, Dewar’s Scotch Whisky

An entrepreneurial result-driven bilingual marketing leader with a cross cultural mindset experienced in developing strategies across categories, geographies, targets and cultures.Edwin has a diverse consumer segment experience: General Market, Hispanic, Asian, and African American as well as international strategic development experience. He thrives on finding solutions to marketing problems and uncovering tangible insights to capitalize on opportunities.

Rajaa Grar
Sr. Director of Marketing – Social Media, Digital Content, Wholesale & Influencer Marketing
Paula’s Choice LLC

Rajaa Grar is the Sr. Director of Global Marketing at Paula’s Choice Skincare, heading all brand/ Omnichannel, social and Influencer Marketing at the Global Skincare company with a cult following. Prior to that, she was at Amazon, leading the Luxury Skincare category where she has accelerated high double digits YoY growth and launched brands like Korean skincare brand Tony Moly, Erno Laszlo, and Jurlique. Prior to that, She was at the Starbucks coffee company heading up all brand and digital marketing efforts for the Frappuccino and Doubleshot energy brands in Latin America.Rajaa has spent over 13 years in brand & digital marketing in the US and globally at companies such as the Kellogg Company, Coors Light / MillerCoors, and Tampico Beverages.Rajaa holds an MBA from Northwestern University – Kellogg School of Management, a bachelor’s degree from McGill University in Marketing and International Business and a bachelor of science with a major in Microbiology from the University of Montreal.

Ana Lucía is JCPenney’s National Media Manager developing 360 total market strategies that touch every step of the marketing process, from planning to execution with over 18 years of international multidisciplinary background in Marketing and Media. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Science (LCC’98) from el Tec de Monterrey (ITESM, Campus Monterrey). Born in Mexico City, she grew up in Monterrey where she was exposed to the bi-cultural US/Mexican border dynamics. She lives in Dallas, TX.

Matthew Harris
Sales Director, U.S. Hispanic
Verizon Media

High-performance sales leader who can innovate strategies that boost revenue across multiple media platforms. Expert at new business development from opportunity identification through customer capture and retention in both domestic and international markets. Strong Digital and Linear advertising acumen with a focus on audience-based targeting, integrated programs, and branded media.
Specialties: sales management, client/customer relations, needs assessment, market analysis, New business development, negotiations, integrated programs.

Belen Pamukoff
Brand Director

Marketing-Strategy and Execution. Dynamic marketer with strong track record of building brands. Committed to people and teamwork. Leads and manages all consumer marketing communication, including digital. Develops annual planning process.Oversees outside agencies who focus on brand messaging, social media, public relations, media planning and all related reporting. Leads and manages the implementation of the Heineken global campaigns in the US in order to impact Brand health and sales performance. Oversees the development of the social media strategy and local implementation of the digital activations.

The California Endowment

Jose L Plaza currently serves a Manager in the statewide team at The California Endowment, one of the largest health foundations in the country, and is charged with managing portfolios that impact health, empowering disenfranchised communities, and using tools for narrative change.

Dane K. Matthews
Head of Marketing Activation & CRM
Conagra Brands

Visionary retail leader with demonstrated experience in leading brand transformations and delivering break-through omni-channel experiences centered around driving customer loyalty and brand engagement. Strong track record of managing large teams within highly-matrixed environments through thought leadership, collaboration and emotional intelligence.
Specialties: general management, marketing strategy, digital marketing, CRM, retail management and strategy (online & offline), product development (owned & national-branded), team leadership, business development, M&A, project management, and cross-functional leadership.

Ana Lucía is JCPenney’s National Media Manager developing 360 total market strategies that touch every step of the marketing process, from planning to execution with over 18 years of international multidisciplinary background in Marketing and Media. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Science (LCC’98) from el Tec de Monterrey (ITESM, Campus Monterrey). Born in Mexico City, she grew up in Monterrey where she was exposed to the bi-cultural US/Mexican border dynamics. She lives in Dallas, TX.

Ronald Bautista
Sr. Multicultural Marketing Specialist
EmblemHealth / AdvantageCare Physicians
(Special Guest)

Ron Bautista serves as a champion of cultural competency at EmblemHealth, one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit health plans, serving 3.1 million people who live and work across the New York tri-state area. He’s responsible for providing strategic support to Acquisition, Brand, Sales, and Neighborhood Care teams in developing and executing marketing plans targeted to Latinx consumers. Ron also manages end-to-end development of Latinx advertising across all channels, from direct mail to digital with a special focus on the group that’s above 65 years of age.

2020 Brand Star Committee Schedule

  • ▶︎February, 2020

    Winter Virtual Meeting
    (exact date tbd).

    ▶︎April, 2, 2020

    In-person meeting at Portada Los Angeles

    ▶︎Mid-April, 2020

    Happy Hour & Council Content Choice
    (exact date and venue tbd).

    ▶︎July 2020

    Summer Virtual Meeting (exact date tbd).

    ▶︎September 24, 2020

    In-person meeting at Portada New York

    ▶︎November, 2020

    Happy Hour & Council Content Choice
    (exact date and venue tbd)

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