“As a community bank that was created over 177 years ago to improve the lives of immigrants who came to this country to grow and thrive, we remain committed now as much as ever to providing personal service and solutions to diverse customers. Our employees, who live in the communities where we work and are involved with local organizations and civic groups, are familiar with the culture and needs of area residents. We are proud of our bilingual staff who serve many Spanish-speaking customers throughout the communities we serve.”

Robert Polanco, First Vice President and Market Manager



PSEG a continuous supporter of SHCCNJ Annual Convention and Awards Luncheon
By Susana G Baumann

Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG), the publicly traded, diversified energy company headquartered in New Jersey, is one of the ten largest electric companies in the U.S with total assets of $37.5 billion (2015), annual revenues of $10.4 billion (2015) and approximately 13,000 employees working hard to make PSEG the most reliable utility company in the Mid-Atlantic region year after year.

PSEG is long-time and proud supporter of the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey and of this event in particular which serves to strengthen the Hispanic business community. As a business partner, PSEG also is proud of one of its most established Employee Resource Business Groups, Adelante.

From its inception, Adelante has played a very active role in the community that PSEG serves by partnering with organizations such as the March of Dimes (MOD), Hispanics Inspiring Students Performance and Activities (HISPA), the National Society of Hispanic MBAs (NSHMBA); and also supporting organizations like Hispanic Business Council Scholarship Foundation of New Jersey (NJHBCSF), The Latino Institute, Inc., La Casa de Don Pedro, Puertorriqueños Asociados for Community Organization (P.A.C.O.), and the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey (SHCCNJ), among others.

The Adelante vision is to cultivate an environment where Hispanics/Latinos are recognized and represented at all levels throughout PSEG,” said Executive Sponsor Jorge Cardenas, vice president-asset management and centralized services. “Their mission is to be a resource for all employees who want to gain a greater understanding of and contribute to the Hispanic/Latino experience and perspective.”

Adelante has provided development opportunities for its members, employees and young professionals in the community including leading programs that recognize and help raise awareness of diverse observances like Hispanic Heritage Month.

Adelante actively trains future internal and external candidates by offering free resume reviewing, interviewing skills, workshops and one-on-one sessions. They also help recruit prospective candidates by supporting PSEG Talent Acquisition & Diversity Outreach activities at colleges and career fairs.

Recognizing the importance of education and the need for opportunity among Latino students, Adelante Fundraising Committee’s goal is to raise money for STEM students.

“We believe education is key for the advancement of our community, and we want to contribute to increase the access of Latino students to careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). In the past three years, Adelante has contributed to more than six scholarships for STEM students belonging to The Latino Institute – Latino Scholar Program and the NJHBCSF initiatives,” said Joseph Santamaria, vice president-PSEG IT and CIO, and Adelante Executive Co-Sponsor. “In three years, with the help of our wonderful volunteers and our employees, we have raised over $4,000 just for STEM scholarships.”

He added, “We are honored to have been — and continue to be — part of the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Annual Convention and Awards Luncheon and support the growing Hispanic business community in New Jersey.”


Latino Outreach Programs at Newark Beth Israel and Clara Maass Medical Center Seek to Meet the Health Care Needs of the Hispanic Community in Essex County and Beyond.

To meet the unique health care needs of the Latino population, Clara Maass Medical Center has established the Center of Excellence for Latino Health and Newark Beth Israel Medical Center has launched the Hispanic Health Outreach Program. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Hispanics have different degrees of illness or health risks, including a 50% higher death rate from diabetes, 23% more obesity, 24% more poorly controlled high blood pressure and are less likely to be screened for various health issues.

The Hispanic Health Outreach Program at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center is specially designed to raise awareness about health issues facing the Hispanic community in Newark as well as enhancing access. The Hispanic Health Outreach Program recently announced the program to the Hispanic community and will work with community leaders to better understand and provide the preventive education and screenings most needed by the Latino population in Newark, in addition to providing information about the services available at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center.

The Hispanic Health Outreach Program will initially focus on five areas including diabetes, women’s health and breast services, prostate cancer and children’s health. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Hispanics have different degrees of illness or health risks, including a 50% higher death rate from diabetes, 23% more obesity, 24% more poorly controlled high blood pressure and are less likely to be screened for various health issues.

The Center of Excellence for Latino Health at Clara Maass Medical Center has been established to provide comprehensive, multidisciplinary health and wellness services that address a wide-range of acute and chronic illnesses.

To enhance access to health insurance in accordance with the Affordable Care Act, Clara Maass’ Center for Excellence for Latino Health (CELH) hosted an open enrollment program to give local families an opportunity to meet with Health Insurance Marketplace representatives, learn more about options and enroll in a health insurance plan. Additionally, the CELH will host a wellness event for local clergy and members of their faith-based health ministries to further increase outreach to local populations.

For more information about the Newark Beth Israel Medical Center Hispanic Health Outreach Program, visit barnabashealth.org/nbihispanichealth. To learn more about Clara Maass Medical Center’s Center for Excellence for Latino Health, call 973-450-2997.



Wells Fargo’s long life commitment to foster diversity and inclusion.
By Susana G Baumann

With 57 percent of women and 40 percent of minority employees of Wells Fargo’s workforce across all levels, including 41 percent of female and 31 percent minority Board Members, the company lives by its commitment to make diversity and inclusion a true priority amongst its ranks of management and employees alike.

The company’s vision on this important aspect states that differences are seeing as assets, and those differences in Wells Fargo’s workforce mirror communities and customers they serve.

Wells Fargo’s commitment to the Hispanic community has been a longstanding dedication to the pulsating economic growth and empowerment of Latinos. To reflect this commitment, the company’s efforts include fostering a vibrant employee-driven group called, “Latin Connection Team Member Network.” Latin Connection is available not only to Hispanic or to Latino employees but to all Wells Fargo team members who have an interest in the Hispanic/Latino culture.

Over 700 New Jersey based Latin Connection team members from all ethnic and professional backgrounds take advantage of this opportunity to work together to champion diversity throughout the company by promoting cultural awareness, community service, empowerment and networking opportunities for its members.

For Hispanic Heritage Month, Latin Connection will be conducting four different workshops for Hispanic Small Business owners throughout the region.  These free workshops, all conducted in Spanish, will be hosted in our branches, including Perth Amboy, Red Bank, Trenton and North Brunswick.

The purpose of these workshops is to educate small business owners, whether new or well established, on how to be successful in any industry and to help them maneuver through all the complexities of being a small business owner.

Topics of the workshops include: How to establish a new business, the business life cycle (start, run, grow your business) as well as showing them how to successfully use the resources found on our wellsfargoworks.com website, which includes our Competitive Intelligence Tool. This city/town specific tool is software that allows them to compare their business to competitors, analyze best promotional channels to advertise their business, and research historical data on specific industries in their area.

Moses C. Santizo, Chair of Latin Connection, said, “It is an honor to work for a company that fosters and maintains an environment of diversity and inclusion.  Having this employee-driven group allows us not only to keep in touch with our community but also to mentor our diverse team members to a higher level of opportunity within the company.  This is something I am very passionate about and am thankful to be able to lead this group.”

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

Serving New Jersey’s communities since 1932

Health insurance is complicated. When you add a language barrier, it can become even more challenging for consumers to comprehend. Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey (Horizon BCBSNJ) understands the need to answer all consumers’ questions about health care coverage and to go the extra mile so that language barriers never stand in the way of anyone’s access to quality and affordable health coverage.

Health insurance is also very costly, but Horizon BCBSNJ is working hard to make it more affordable to everyone. With this in mind, Horizon created OMNIA Health Plans. OMNIA members save, on average, 15 percent on their premiums compared to Horizon BCBSNJ’s broad network plans, and depending on type of OMNIA plan they buy, may have no deductible, zero coinsurance and low co-pays.

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, about 1 out of every 4 Hispanic residents in New Jersey is uninsured. At Horizon BCSNJ, we have made it a priority to help get more Hispanic residents enrolled, and OMNIA plans have been instrumental in doing just that. In the 2016 enrollment period, 41,000 New Jerseyans who were previously uninsured purchased an OMNIA plan, with about 15 percent of those being Hispanic consumers. OMNIA plans will once again be available in both the Individual and employer group markets in 2017.

We have had great success with enrolling New Jersey residents, and Hispanic New Jerseyans in particular, because we pride ourselves in knowing our customer. With Hispanic consumers, that means understanding the unique cultural and language obstacles Latinos face with purchasing and using health insurance. That’s why at Horizon BCBSNJ, we use multiple outreach channels, including digital, grass roots, marketing and community-based education to help Hispanic consumers:

• Learn about their health insurance options and responsibilities;

• Understand what financial assistance may be available to reduce their health coverage costs;

• Make the best use of their benefits to keep them and their loved ones healthy.

Through grassroots marketing, culturally-sensitive retail centers and person-to-person outreach, Horizon BCBSNJ has helped thousands of Hispanic consumers overcome barriers to purchasing health insurance and accessing the health care delivery system.

In 2015, Horizon BCBSNJ and HolaDoctor opened a new enrollment and service location in Jersey City that specifically caters to the Hispanic consumer. HolaDoctor Insurance Services, located at 353 Central Avenue, features one-on-one assistance from bilingual agents, who assist consumers with all their needs, including enrollment, education, and servicing their Horizon BCBSNJ member needs.

Look for us in the future to expand upon these “retail” efforts in other communities where Hispanic New Jerseyans live and work.

The other ways that Horizon BCBSNJ has helped to connect Hispanic consumers to the coverage, information and assistance they need include:

• Holding regular grass roots education events in Hispanic-owned restaurants (Brunch con Beneficios) to break down language barriers and improve health literacy;

• Creating a Spanish-language website (www.Horizonazul.com) and a dedicated team of Spanish-speaking agents and phone hotline to service Latino consumers and businesses;

• Establishing remote service and sale locations at New Jersey malls, and staffing them with Spanish-speaking agents;

• Collaborating with the Hispanic business community to create new channels of cultural outreach.

With open enrollment for 2017 getting underway on November 1, we encourage all residents to become more informed about their health insurance options. For more than 84 years, Horizon BCBSNJ has been committed to helping all state residents access quality health coverage at an affordable cost. How can we help and serve you? For more information about our plans and services, please visit HorizonBlue.com or HorizonAzul.com.

As NRBP Chairman, Delgado a Proud “Champion” for Newark

By Mark J. Bonamo


Sam Delgado wants everyone to know something important about his business background in Newark. He might be a corporate executive now, but, through hard-won experience, he also has what he proudly calls a “street degree.”

“I owned a business in Newark, Minuteman Press, when it was on Halsey Street,” said Delgado, Vice President of External Affairs for Verizon New Jersey, inside his office in his company’s Art Deco headquarters on Broad Street in downtown Newark. “I know very well what it’s like to pay my employees before I get paid.”

Delgado, 60, takes this unique perspective with him as chairman of the Newark Regional Business Partnership. Begun as the Newark Board of Trade in 1869, the NRBP serves as a central economic advocacy hub to strengthen the Greater Newark region’s business infrastructure and revitalize New Jersey’s largest city. The organization’s membership includes nearly 450 corporations, professional firms, small businesses, educational institutions and not-for-profit organizations.

The key factor for Newark to survive?

“Public safety needs to be number one on the agenda,” he said. “What draws capital – not just banking capital, but intellectual, human resource capital – is safety and stability for people and investments.

The NRBP also makes public policy suggestions as part of a role that Delgado sees as “an ombudsman, or a Greek chorus” to help shape Newark’s economic future.

“There is room for tax abatements, but they have to benefit both the city and businesses and truly spur further economic development,” Delgado said. “They have to be for the people who don’t leave Newark after 5 o’clock and for the second-tier businesses that serve them. In Newark, we should have room for people of all socioeconomic strata to live and work together. That’s healthier for business in the long run.”

Delgado knows that there are challenges to Newark’s workforce development, including education. But he points out that besides the friction between public schools and charter schools, there are still positive learning environments for Newark students “and that doesn’t mean when [Pulitzer Prize winner and Newark native] Philip Roth went to Weequahic High School.”

Delgado also notes that Newark’s tech hub capacities, rail and public transport systems, airport, seaport and road network give the city unique economic advantages.

“We even have one of the best water systems in the world,” Delgado said. “It’s no mistake that Budweiser beer and Calandra’s bread are made here. I still think the cup is always half full, and is never half empty, in Newark.”

There is a touch of both drill sergeant and dreamer in Delgado’s office. Mementos are visible of his time in the U.S. Marines, including his service in Operation Desert Storm, along with a framed black-and-white photo of Bobby Kennedy, who the Puerto Rican-born Delgado volunteered for during his U.S. Senate campaign. These images fuse in his forecast for Newark, a mix of realism and optimism formed after spending almost half his life in and around the city he loves.

“I’ve had people who worked for me who went to college and became professionals, and then I had someone doing God knows what out of my mail room – that’s the dichotomy of this city, but that happens anywhere,” Delgado said. “But I have to set the example. If the NRBP is going to be the city’s cheerleader, then I’m going to be the number one champion. The people here in Newark are wonderful. Anybody that gets involved in the civic life of this city can see its potential right away, and can feel the idea that it can be greater than what it is.”

“I have an emotional tie to this community,” Delgado added. “Newark doesn’t just get under your skin. It gets into your mind. It gets into your soul.”