50 Top Latino Voices To Follow On Twitter

By Pablo Manriquez (HuffPost LatinoVoices)

Last year I wrote a post titled 7 Young Latinos In Online Media To Watch In 2012. It got a lot of attention with Huffington Post Latino Voices tweeting that it was one of their best posts of last year.

At the end of the post, I asked who else should be included in the list. The response came mostly on Twitter via a barrage of handles to follow were tweeted and direct messaged to my account. I followed readers’ suggestions and followed the accounts on Twitter.

Last week I revisited the post and saw a comment reminding me to post a follow up list of Latinos.  Over the weekend I made a list of just over 50 Latinos that influence me on Twitter along with notes about why.  After weighing the merits of each tweeter on my list, I trimmed it down to the 50 accounts listed below.

That said, without further ado, I give you 50 Top Latino Voices to Follow on Twitter which, like my last Latino media list post, is listed alphabetically by first name –

  • Adriana Maestas (Daily Grito):  The Godmother of the Latino blogosphere, Maestas got me started blogging in her Latino Politics Blog in 2009.  She then founded Daily Grito with Alicia Menendez and is one of the most-trusted sources of commentary on Latino politics.
  • Adrian Saenz (Latinos for Obama):  Barack Obama’s Latino Vote Director at the campaign’s reelection headquarters in Chicago, Saenz has his work cut out for him this year.  It was via Saenz’s tweets that I first learned of VotemosTodos.org, an Obama campaign digital platform in Spanish and English and the best-built voter registration platform I’ve yet found online.
  • Alberto Vourvoulias (FOX News Latino):  The Managing Editor of FOX News Latino, the first and biggest Latino affairs vertical on the net, Vourvoulias previously worked on Time Magazine’s Latin American edition and was a research associate on Latin America for the Council of Foreign Relations. He doesn’t tweet much, but his experience anchor’s FOX News Latino’s coverage of Latino affairs — and in particular, immigration — with fair and balanced precision.
  • Alsy Acevedo (Catholic Relief Services): Formerly an ace wordsmith at the Orlando Sentinel in Florida, Acevedo now writes and fights for justice as part of the Catholic Relief Services.  Her work has taken her to abroad to Haiti and her tweets are unapologetic advocacy for those who Johnny Cash calls “the poor and the beaten down.”
  • Arelis Hernandez (Orlando Sentinel): A breaking news reporter for the Orlando Sentinel, this year Hernandez broken into the national news cycle on twitter with her tweets covering the Travon Martin tragedy in Florida.
  • Astrid Galvan (Albuquerque Journal):  Galvan covers higher education in a state where Latino voters are a key factor during every election cycle, especially this one.
  • Brian A. Hernandez (Mashable):  A Mexican-Filipino (or “Mexipino”), Hernandez writes about social media, pop culture, and internet memes at Mashable, where he began as a copy editor just last year.
  • Bettina Inclan (Republican National Committee):  At the Republican National Committee, Inclan’s job is to help Latino voters connect with the Republican Party.  In other words, she has arguably the most difficult job in Latino affairs this election cycle.  Support her on Twitter.  She’s doing good work.
  • Brittney Morrett (The Libre Initiative):  A proud American of Puerto Rican and Eastern European decent and staunch advocate of free market American liberty, Morrett first caught my attention on Twitter when she called me out as a rampant Obama apologist, then made me laugh about it, in agreement.  Morrett is the most engaging conservative Latina I follow on Twitter.
  • Bryan Llenas (FOX News Latino):  Llenas is a multimedia maestro at FOX News Latino where he writes, tweets, and broadcasts Latino affairs under the best tutelage in network news.  Llenas a network news Latino talent on the rise.  Watch his career continue to develop and his following continue to grow throughout this year.
  • Catherine Castro (Qorvis):  Castro is a consummate workingaholic and Latino marketing expert.  At Qorvis, I’ve had the privilege to work with Castro and try to outwork Castro, and fail.  She’s taught me much and if you’re a Latino marketing professional on Twitter, she can teach you much, too.
  • Chris Peña (NBC Latino):  “Look, we live here, you know? We don’t just sit around drinking cafecito and talking about the DREAM Act,” Pena says.  As much as I’m politically inclined to disagree, Peña is right.  I don’t just sit around drinking cafecito and talking about the DREAM Act.  As NBC Latino’s Executive Editor, he oversee’s an editorial vision I frequently forward to my younger siblings.  NBC Latino broadcasts positive stories about Latino success, with a great online reporter in Adrian Carrasquillo to cover Latino struggle when it rises to the level of NBC news.
  • Cindy Ortiz (Univision News):  I met Ortiz at a Pitbull flashmob in downtown Los Angeles where she is a rising broadcast news star covering the entertainment beat for Univision News.  Her recent interviewees include Eva Mendez and Salma Hayak.  Look for Ortiz to continue to shine as Univision’s reach expands into English-language media markets.
  • Dolores Huerta (Dolores Huerta Foundation):  Presidential Medal of Freedom winner and community organizing legend is arguably the most-influential abuelita in Los Angeles. Huerta is an unapologetic advocate for immigrants, workers, women, and especially, Latinos.
  • Elianne Ramos (LATISM):  The heart and soul of Latinos in Social Media (LATISM), I’ve watched Ramos teach and connect the emerging Latino mediasphere (or “the space” as it’s called by Latino media entrepreneurs) on Twitter with her great social media vibe.
  • Elena Lacayo (singer/songwriter):  An NCLR alumna and guitar virtuoso with a voice to match, Lacayo recently started a folk rock group called elena & los fulanos. Follow her tweets and look for her on stage throughout this summer concert season.
  • Esther J. Cepeda (syndicated columnist):  Why am I “American?” Cepeda wrote recently as part of the Pew Hispanic Center‘s “Conversation About Identity“. Well for one, because I say so. Cepeda is a master wordsmith. One thing I’ve always enjoyed about her writing is the harmony she crafts between wise Latina and Latina attitude.
  • Francisco Cortes (FOX News Latino):  A U.S. Army Infantry veteran and the most-powerful Latino in English-language network news, Cortes pitched, launched, and staffed FOX News Latino, the first-mover site in English-language network news.  Since then, FOX News Latino has grown to be the most-trusted and arguably most-trusted Latino network news site online.  “They’re actually pretty good,” an friend in Washington, D.C. immigrant advocacy tells me.  “They really go out of their way to get immigration right.”
  • Fernando Varela (opera singer):  “When I stand on stage with an opera singer,” Lionel Richie told Fernando Varela while standing on stage with the Latino opera mega talent at the Milken Institute earlier this year, “I am terrified of you.”  As it turned out, Lionel Richie had nothing to be afraid of, as Varela is a pro.  Richie realized this by the end of the performance, when he told Varela, “You’re going places kid.”  I think Richie’s spot on.  Watch Fernando’s performance here.
  • George Gonzalez (HUD):  President Obama appointed Gonzalez his Deputy Director of Communications at HUD.  Ask George, a fully bilingual Mexico City native who came to Washington, D.C. via Los Angeles, about Latino New Urbanism and tweet him your questions about Housing and Urban Development in English or in Spanish.
  • James Wagner (The Washington Post): Don’t be fooled by the surname. Like me, Wagner is half-Latino — Nicaraguan — but on his mother’s side. Wagner is a sports writer for The Washington Post.
  • Janet Murguía (NCLR):  She is President and CEO of NCLR, the largest national Latino advocacy and civil rights organization in the United States.  NCLR’s challenges are many, but the political capital the organization wields during this election cycle should not be underestimated.  Latinos in America are going through a particularly rough spell, to put it mildly.  Murguía
  • Jordan Fabian (Univision News): While Fabian is not himself Latino, he reports widely on Latino affairs. Recently named by The Guardian as one of the top tweeters to follow for 2012 election coverage, Fabian is the Political Editor for Univision News.  Follow him for careful, reliable journalism — especially in immigration affairs where it is so-desperately needed.
  • Jody Aguis Vallejo (USC): A sociology professor at USC studying the Latino middle class, Latino elite, Latino entrepreneurs, and immigrant integration, Vallejo has a new book coming out next month on Stanford University Press. Buy. It. Up.
  • Jorge Ramos (Univision):  At Univision, Ramos is the greatest and most-trusted Latino journalist of all time.  Follow him no Twitter and if you prefer your nightly news in Spanish, watch his nightly broadcasts on Univision.
  • Julio Varela (Latino Rebels):  The leader of the Latino Rebels and brother to the great Latino vocalist Fernando Varela, Julio is 100% owner of Latino Rebels, LLC. According to the Latino Rebels site, their ideas come “from watching way too many Daily Show episodes, being on social media way too long, listening to too much punk music and devouring the biographies of Zapata, Martí, Albizu, Menchú and so many other Latino Rebels from Latin American history.” I look forward to watching the Latinos Rebels continue to grow as a great source for internet memes and independent news.
  • Kety Esquivel (Ogivly):  As Vice President of Social at Ogilvy in Washington, D.C., most everyone knows Kety and Kety knows most everyone.  This has been a busy year for Kety.  On top of her client work, Kety has completed an Executive Management course at the Harvard Business School, coordinated TEDxAdamsMorgan, and organized a Latino Voice Survey which debuted at the Hispanicize Conference in Miami. Consider taking a moment to fill out the survey and let your voice be heard this election cycle.
  • Kristian Ramos (NDN):  A consummate immigration wonk, Ramos is NDN’s Policy Director of the 21st Century Border Initiative. As the immigration debate continues to heat up during this election, Ramos is a great resource to follow for the Democratic Party immigration policy and politics.
  • Lance Rios (Being Latino):  Of all the scrutiny I received for my 7 Young Latinos In Online Media To Watch In 2012 post, the most common complaint was that it had omitted Lance Rios, the founder of Latino media startup Being Latino.  Lance is the best collaborator in Latino media.  He brokered a partnership with FOX News Latino earlier, and has been a mainstay on the Latino affairs circuit since he quit his job to become a full-time entrepreneur earlier this year.  I suspect Lance Rios and Being Latino will have a big role to play in the future of Latino multimedia and hope that his successes will inspire a generation of Latino multimedia entrepreneurs to dream big.
  • Liliana Segura (The Nation):  Segura is of Columbian heritage and writes about prisons and harsh sentencing as Associate Editor at The Nation.  Not familiar with her writing?  Try this.
  • Megan Ortiz (Vivir Latino):  The publisher of Vivir Latino, Ortiz is a top Latino voice in immigration affairs, especially on issues related to deportations.  Ortiz recently attended the Top Blogueras summit at the White House (hosted by LATISM) during which she had the courage to ask White House Policy Advisor Cecilia Muñoz about deportation policy.  For this she was named (by me) America’s Top Bloguera.
  • Monica Quiroz (Twitter):  In truth, I only just followed Monica a few days ago. A Mexican descendant, she does Spanish support at Twitter. As far as I’m concerned, this along qualifies her as a Top Latino Voice (or voz) on Twitter.  Tweet your questions about Twitter at Monica in Spanish.
  • Nathaly Arriola (Latinos for Obama):  Formerly Senador Reid‘s press secretary on Capitol Hill, Arriola now Hispanic Media Coordinator in Chicago for Barack Obama’s reelection campaign.  Her quick ascent from the Hill to such tremendous responsibility within the Obama media machine is not unexpected, as Arriola is the Democratic Party’s most-talented communications staffer.  And she’s fully bilingual.
  • Nick Valencia (CNN): A great journalist and engaging tweeter, Valencia is President of the Atlanta Chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.  At CNN headquarters in Atlanta, what makes Nick unique as a rising Latino star network news is that he has also steadily risen as a star on Twitter, amassing nearly 20,000 followers.  Look for that number to go up as Nick continues to report throughout this election cycle.
  • Nina Terrero (NBC Latino): Terrero covers family, food, health and culture for NBC Latino where she being groomed for broadcast superstardom at the network news giant.  And if she isn’t, she should be. Follow Terrero on Twitter, and follow her career at NBC Latino. Her multimedia talent, if put to good use, will inspire a generation of wise Latinitas to dream big.
  • Roque Planas (FOX News Latino): An outstanding reporter, web producer, and Latin America expert at FOX News Latino, Planas’s work has appeared in Foreign Policy Magazine, the World Politics Review, and the New Internationalist. He is based in New York City, but is a great Latino affairs resource on Twitter, especially for current events in Latin America.
  • Ruben Navarrette (syndicated columnist): Arguably the most-influential Latino syndicated columnist ever to write in English, Navarrette has been in the game for a long time. I’ve seem him described as “conservative”, “centrist” and “liberal” in his politics, which to me means he must be doing something right. Navarrette does not tweet much, but the impact of his commentary on discussion in the Latino media sphere is unrivaled by any columnist.
  • Russell Contreras (Associated Press): This year Contreras, an immigration and cops reporter forAP in New Mexico, is running for President of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists. He has served as the organization’s Treasurer during the 180 degree turnaround in the organization’s finances under Michele Salcedo, bringing NAHJ back from the brink of doom.  But there’s still much work to be done.  I support his candidacy. Do you?
  • Steve Alfaro (Voto Latino):  Also named as named (by me) as 7 Young Latinos In Online Media To Watch In 2012, Steve’s work during this election cycle has him bouncing from East to Left Coast and back again as he spearheads Voto Latino’s mission to register as many Latino voters as they can.  That said, where he was once was best known as an artist, Steve’s project management skills in Latino media are becoming increasingly unrivaled as he manages many more projects than ever before as Maria Teresa Kumar, Voto Latino’s founder, goes on maternity leave.  Follow Steve andsupport Voto Latino by registering to vote today.
  • Tony Hernandez (Latino Broadcasting Company):  Hernandez is President and CEO of the Latino Broadcasting Company and Co-Founder of the Immigrant Archive Project, a growing database of immigrant video testimonials that now includes actressesnews anchorsCEOs, a former Miss USA, and dozens of other immigrant stories.  The Immigrant Archive Project will someday be an invaluable resource for our grandkids’ great-grandkids.
  • Victor Arias (Hispanic Communications Network): Of all the Latinos I follow on Twitter, Arias has the best music recommendations. Follow him on Twitter and Spotify.
  • Victor Manuel Ramos (Newsday):  One of the first of hundreds of Latino journalists I followed on Twitter when I first signed up for an account, Ramos reports for Newsday in New York. His reporting, like his tweeting, is reliable and accurate.
  • Viviana Hurtado (Wise Latina Club) : A seld-described “Blogger-in-Chief/MMJ/PHD/Yalie/World Traveler/Salsa Dancer/Runner/WannabeYogi/Golden Retriever Lover,” I saw Hurtado moderate an excellent bilingual panel of wise Latinas from Latin America speaking on femicide. Hurtado is the best bilingual panel moderator in Latino affairs. Need a maestra to foment great discussion in Spanish and English?  Hit her up!

Categories: NGL News

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