The inaugural Arkansas Latino Business Awards were presented Sept. 28, at an awards dinner at the Clinton Presidential Center.
Hosted by the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center, Arkansas Business Navigator and Conexion de Negocios Latinos, the event recognized outstanding Latino-owned businesses and Latino small business champions across the state. Awards were given in eight categories.
“Here in Hispanic Heritage Month, we are excited to celebrate the contributions of the Latino community to the economic growth and development of Arkansas. We are thrilled with the great response to this new awards program. Congratulations to all the finalists and winners,” said Laura Fine, state director of the ASBTDC.
All businesses in the state of Arkansas that are at least 51% Latino-owned or operated were eligible to be nominated. Voting on the Arkansas Latino Business Awards Facebook page determined winners in the three People’s Choice categories. The rest were selected by a panel of judges.
Santiago’s Bakery in Glenwood, owned by Juventino Gonzalez, was named Small Business of the Year.
People’s Choice winners:
Legacy Business of the Year – Mercado San Jose, Little Rock
Emerging Business of the Year – Centerton Food Trucks Park, Centerton
Food Truck of the Year – The Walking Dog, De Queen
Woman-Owned Business of the Year – Pristine by Ali Cleaning Services Residential and Commercial, owned by Ali Alcaraz of Bentonville
Young Entrepreneur of the Year – Natali Carmona of Little Rock, owner of Get Nailed 32, an online business
Community Organization of the Year – Mamas Unidas, based in Little Rock
Community Champion of the Year – Arisbeth Garcia of Alas/Wings, based in Springdale