Like many other Hispanic professional organizations that came of age in the 1980's, the Hispanic Public Relations Association was established in 1984 by a group of Latino practitioners who believed that the creation of an organization dedicated to serving their specific needs and interests was the most effective way to promote professional advancement in the field.
The first spark for the organization came from founder David Garcia, who worked then with Fleishman Hillard Public Relations. Garcia believed that other PR organizations' well-intentioned efforts to embrace multiculturalism were more geared to serving the needs of the organization than they were to Hispanic practitioners. Garcia initially discussed the idea with Myrna Gutierrez and John Echeveste, who agreed and began working with Garcia on plans to establish the organization.
HPRA was formed at a time when Hispanics were beginning to fill many corporate, non-profit and government PR positions in the Los Angeles area. The first official meeting brought together a group that included, among others, Esther Renteria, Rose Soto, Emma Carrasco, and Mari Bellas, who became the founding members. The first order of business was to establish a name, and after several brainstorm sessions, the group settled on HPRA. The organization was loosely modeled on its journalistic counterpart, CCNMA: Latino Journalists of California.
The Hispanic Public Relations Association’s mission is to advance the practice of Hispanic public relations as a marketing discipline; to serve as the voice for professionals working in the Hispanic communications field nationwide; to empower its members through support, resources and education; and to offer guidance and assistance to students pursuing careers in the field.
The Hispanic Public Relations Association is a national membership organization representing forward-thinking PR practitioners with interest and/or expertise in the Hispanic market.