Latina bloggers amplify their voices at the White House

By Adrian Carasquillo (NBCLatino.com)

In a mix of professional development and outreach, top Latina bloggers were invited to the White House for an initiative by Latinos in Social Media, a nonprofit which is the largest group for professional Hispanics engaged in social media.

“Not only mom bloggers or political bloggers were invited,” says Jeannette Kaplun, of Blogs de Mamas. “This basically empowers the top Latina bloggers and enables you to use your voice to build a platform that can become a business and effect change.”

Veronica Arreola asks a question at the Latina blogger policy briefing at the White House. (Courtesy Maura Hernandez)

The top Latina bloggers, which were chosen according to traffic to their websites, content quality and commitment to the blogging space, received professional development from female executives from companies like Google, Disney, Fleishman Hillard, Johnson & Johnson, Proctor and Gamble and many more.

Kaplun says bloggers were given specific advice on the importance of the ‘About Me’ on their blog as well as easily downloadable resumes, rock-solid elevator pitches and crafting strong mission statements for themselves and their blogs.

“We say top Latina bloggers not to exclude anyone but because we want this to be aspirational and wanted women to know we are beginning a movement of saying we have to help each other,” says Ana Flores, founder of SpanglishBaby and one of the bloggers on the selection committee for the event. “Men do this all the time – they constantly reach out and ask each other for help.”

Laura Tellado, a blogger from Orlando who promotes Spina Bifida awareness, asks a question at the White House policy briefing for Latina bloggers. (Courtesy Rachel White)

But the highlight of the trip was the White House policy briefing for the bloggers centered on the topics of education and health.

It’s so amazing that our passion leads us to here,” says Yoly Mason of Las Blogueras. “It says ‘look at us we have a powerful voice.’

Cecilia Muñoz, the Director of Domestic Policy at the White House, opened the briefing for the bloggers talking about education and student loans.

“As bloggers we have a lot to say and our voices are not only being heard in the blogging community but now we’ve brought it to the attention of the White House,” says Angelica Perez, founder of New Latina.

“We’re elevating the conversation to a sector that may not know exactly what we’re doing,” she added. “Now as bloggers we’re putting together our little communities and bringing that power to Washington D.C.”

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