Our esteemed communications specialists have been carefully selected as Jury members for the Latin American Excellence Awards to ensure a fair and balanced evaluation of all applications. The Jury members’ range of expertise covers a wide scope, from the perspective of both in-house and agency communication departments. During an online voting session, the Jury decides which entries are shortlisted, and who the recipients of the Excellence Awards are. The Jury evaluates the innovation, implementation, strategy and impact of the projects submitted, to reward the best in PR communications.
VP Communications | Latin America
Santiago Airasca is a Communications and Public Affairs expert with more than 15 years of experience in different industries and countries. He has a strong background in reputation management, government affairs, and internal and external communications. Prior to joining MetLife, Santiago held various key positions in companies like HSBC, Monsanto, and Medtronic. Santiago holds a Public Relations degree and a master degree in Marketing Management, as well as a Public Opinion and Media certificate.
Director, Publicity & Corp Comms, Latin America
The Walt Disney Company
In her role as Director of Publicity & Corp Comms, Latin America, Maitena de Amorrortu leads the team in charge of planning and coordinating Disney press campaigns in Latin America, as well as their execution in Argentina. As head of corporate communications, she also designs communication strategies that build corporate reputation, oversees crisis management, leads press efforts for Corporate Citizenship, and is in charge of internal communication in the region.She joined the company in 2004, as Standards & Practices coordinator for Disney Channels Latin America. From 2006 to 2008, she was International Standards and Practices Manager for Disney Channels Worldwide in Burbank, California. Upon her return to Buenos Aires, in 2008, she took on the task of consolidating press work throughout the company’s different lines of business. She also began to lead an integrated communications team that serves different areas within the company – Marketing, Human Resources, Sales and Senior Management – in the region. In 2013, she took on new responsabilities in the regional Managing Director’s office.From 1998 to 2005, Maitena worked as a journalist. She wrote for EFE Reportajes and was a contributor for La Nación newspaper in the Economy, Society and Culture sections. Her work has also appeared in art, cuisine and travel magazines. She was the Buenos Aires-based correspondant for Cambio16 magazine from 2001 to 2004.Born and raised in Buenos Aires, Maitena de Amorrortu lived in Belgium, Switzerland, Spain and the United States. She holds a Social Communications degree specializing in Journalism from the Universidad del Salvador (USAL), and has taken postgraduate courses at Universidad Complutense (Madrid), Universidad Torcuato di Tella (Buenos Aires) and UCLA (California).
Director of Corporate Communications
Marcus built his career melting 20 years as reporter and editor for O Globo e Jornal do Brasil, two of the most important national Brazilian newspapers and, since 2005, as head of corporate communications at Confederation of Brazilian Industry, Gol Airlines and Neoenergia, one of the 45 largest companies in Brazil, that currently operates in 12 states with more than 5.000 direct employees and performs throughout the energy chain: distribution, generation, transmission and commercialization.At Neoenergia, Marcus leads the corporate reputation and consumer engagement (Brand positioning, PR, media relationship, social media strategy, marketing) and is also responsible for Corporate Social Ambiental Responsibility Programs, with focus in education and culture projects.
Marketing Q Strategies & Communications
Lorena Carreño is CEO from Marketing Q Strategies & Communications a Lewis PR Partner, a Public Relations and Integral Corporate Communications consulting firm established in 1992. She has developed and coordinated corporate communications and public relations programs for various companies. VP from Communication & Marketing Industry Confederation & Member at Mexican Communicatins Academy.She has received various accolades for her career achievements, She has participated as a speaker at Top Communications Forum in Davos, Swizerland; at SXSW in Austin, Texas; and CONFIARP´s Congress in Latam and World Public Relations Forum at Madrid organizated by Global Alliance.She teaching public relations and corporate communication to graduate in different universities, is a co-author of two books. She has participate as jury for Effie Social at Mexico and other competitions like El Ojo de Iberoamérica in Argentina & the PR Awards for Rusia.
Global Chief Marketing & Communications Officer
gA United States (Grupo Assa)
A business senior leader with extensive experience in international corporate communications, media relations, public affairs, marketing, social media, sustainability and PR agency management. Have specialized experience directing award-winning PR programs and managing large international teams. Over the last 18 years I´ve worked side by side with top executives of the most competitive companies including Oracle and Arcos Dorados (the largest operator of McDonald's/McCafé in Latin America and the Caribbean). Furthermore I was actively involved with M&A and IPO strategies within these companies. Social Media, digital initiatives and marketing campaigns, along with gamification are disciplines in which I have a strong background. I use my strengths in these areas to reach broader audiences globally. Willing to relocate for the right opportunity.
Founder of Approach Communications, in 1996, Beth Garcia graduated in Journalism from the Université d’Assas in Paris, where she also earned a Master’s Degree in Information and Communication Science. She worked as a contributor for Bloch Editores in the French capital and in 1993, in Brazil, joined the reporting team of Jornal do Brasil. Beth is responsible for Approach’s General Management and for new businesses development. In these almost 20 years, Approach became one of the ten largest communication agencies on Brazil, with more than 160 multidisciplinary professionals who believe in content that bridges, engages, inspires and impacts.
President and CEO
Hill+Knowlton Strategies Latin America
Claudia joined Hill+Knowlton Strategies as President & CEO overseeing all markets in Latin America and Caribbean. Her 20+ years of communications industry experience includes managing projects for key corporate clients such as Ford, HP, Intel, Sony, A. T. Kearney, Ryder, Goodyear, Unilever, J&J, Clorox, Walmart, HBO and FedEx. Her areas of expertise are B2B and B2C communications, corporate positioning, issues management, branding, CSR and digital media. Before leading Burson-Marsteller Miami’s operation for 3 years, she was the Regional Practice Chair for the Innovation and Technology Practice leading clients such as PlayStation, Qualcomm, Cisco, SAP, and Symantec. She led her team to win several awards, including the Eikon Award, the top 40 Sabre Award for the Best Latin American Campaign the WWPed Cream Award Consumer Marketing in 2013 and the Corporate International Award. In her career she was recognized with the Achievement Award, the Regional Client Leader Award, a Gold Performance Award and the Hall of Fame Award. Last year she was awarded with Client Service Leadership Award for her work for Ford in Latin America.
Rudolf Hetzel is publisher of international Communication Director magazine, which is distributed worldwide. He is founder and CEO of Quadriga University in Berlin and Helios Media GmbH – the publishing house of Communication Director magazine. Rudolf studied political science at the Free University of Berlin, where he later taught.
Senior Communications Director
Proactive, goal-oriented trilingual executive with more than 16 years of extensive international Public Affairs, Corporate Communications and Marketing experience, in a wide array of industries in Latin America, such as: Manufacturing, Financial, IT, Consulting, Consumer Goods and Services. Proven track record in developing and executing strategies in all Public Affairs & Corporate Communications related areas: Employee Communications, External Communications, Crisis Management & Media Relations, Corporate Social Responsibility, Events & Sponsorships. Brazilian & British national, fluent in English (native), Portuguese (native), and Spanish. Conversational French.
Senior Vice President Communications for Latin America
Wagner Lotito started his career at Siemens in 1989, having performed functions from technical to executive level in the areas of market communications, employee communications, speech writing, crisis management, government affairs, compliance and audit. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Social Communications, Post-graduation degree in Business Communications, MBA in Business Administration and is currently completing a M.S. degree in Communications Management by the Syracuse University. In 2010, he was nominated Head of Corporate Communications for Siemens Brazil and since October 1st, 2014, Wagner Lotito serves as Senior Vice President of Communications and Government Affairs for Americas w/o US.
Director, Head of Communications
Paypal Latin America
Tânia Magalhães joined PayPal in January 2014 as Head of Communications for Latin America. She has over 20 years of expertise in Communications, Crises Management, Social Media, Government Projects, Mergers and Acquisitions and Media Relations. Previously, she worked for 10 years as the Senior Director of Corporate Communications at Oracle Latin America supervising a staff of eleven agencies and headcounts, managing external and internal communications, crises and acquisition plans and created the Corporate Citizenship and social media programs. She also held director positions at AT&T Latin America and Hill and Knowlton. Tânia was nominated by Comunique-se Award 2007/2008/2009 as one of the top ten communication personalities in Brazil and was a Counselor of the Corporate Communications Executive MBA of Fecap/Educartis and Comunique-se.
Executive Vice President
Natalia Martinez joined Edelman’s Buenos Aires office in 2001. Currently serves as EVP, Latin America, Communications Marketing and EVP, Strategic Projects based out of the São Paulo office, with a primary focus on serving global clients and business expansion across the region.Previously, she led the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the Rio 2016 Olympic Games teams in Brazil, overseeing programs that ranged from corporate reputation to consumer engagement through multiple platforms for global and local sponsors, and a number of companies leveraging the large sports events. Prior to that, she worked as an SVP out of the West Coast, based out of Los Angeles and Silicon Valley offices, to create synergies among the teams and regions.Natalia was also the deputy general manager of the Buenos Aires office, and led the local Technology, Health and Digital practices, and participated in several projects of the Corporate and Crisis groups. Prior to joining Edelman, Natalia worked at the local independent PR firm Baraldo, Dell’Oro Trigo. As such, she participated in the implementation of ongoing communications programs for the Consumer and Corporate teams.Natalia is a public relations professional from the Universidad Argentina de la Empresa (UADE), graduated with honors, and has a postgraduate degree in Technology, Scientific and Environmental Communications at Universitat Pompeu Fabre. Furthermore, she worked as a professor at, on “External Communications” and “Corporate PR Ateneo de Estudios Terciarios”. She is fluent in English, Portuguese and Spanish.
Director of Corporate Communications
LLORENTE & CUENCA
With degrees in Journalism and Law, Thyago has over 12 years of experience in both the public sector – in the State Legislature of the State of Rio de Janeiro and as an advisor on projects for the Federal government through the Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) – and the largest media companies in Brazil, like UOL and Globo TV, for which he was a correspondent in Egypt (G1 web portal). With his specialization in international relations and an MBA in Project Management from FGV, Thyago has assisted various companies in evaluating and creating visibility strategies. At S/A LL&C, he has developed and coordinated reputation and advocacy projects for clients in such areas as financial market, energy, telecommunications and health/healthcare.
Vice-president Latin America
Mercè Ribera is the Vice-president of ATREVIA for Latin America. She also is the founding member of Inforpress, now Atrevia, the largest communication consultancy in Spain, with a team of over 300 people and offices in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Brussels and Washington. With an experience of more than 25 years in strategic communication consulting, and management of large global communication projects, she runs the ATREVIA Barcelona’s office. Mercè also opened and consolidated the very first office of Inforpress in Latin America, in Brazil, which she currently manages and coordinates as well. ATREVIA offers Strategic Consultancy in External and Internal Communication, Digital Communication, Public Affairs, Brand Positioning, market access for international expansion, and CSR.
Vice President of Client Services
Maquina Cohn & Wolfe
Director of Corporate Communications for the Southern Region of Latin America
Silvina Seiguer, is the Director of Corporate Communications for the Southern Region of Latin America at Arcos Dorados, the Latin America franchise of McDonald’s Corporation. In this role she leads the communications discipline in 5 countries, which includes Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Peru, and Ecuador. In this position she coordinates local teams in the development of external and internal communications strategies, she leads the Brand positioning and the content in Social Media channels and also is responsible of Corporate Social Responsibility Programs.Before joining Arcos Dorados, she was 15 years at IBM where she had different positions in Marketing and Communications in Argentina and at a regional level. Silvina is graduated in Public Relations at UADE University in Argentina.
Director Corporate and Brand Communications
Nelson Silveira is the Communications Director of GM do Brasil. He joined GM in 2001 as Media Relations Manager and worked in various assignments since then, including the positions of head of GM Portugal Communications and Public Affairs in 2005-2006 and GM Europe Corporate Communications Manager from 2007 to 2009. Prior to joining GM, Silveira worked as reporter and editor in major Brazilian newspapers as Folha de São Paulo and Jornal do Brasil. He is a board member of the Brazilian Corporate Communications Association (Aberje).
Founder of GRUPOCASA, a communication and business development agency focused to support innovative industries coming to Latin America and expanding abroad. President of LatamPR Network – www.latampr.com assembling 10 agencies with PR skills in innovative industries. Sandra is also the Brazilian representative for Eurocom ( www.eurocompr.com), one of the most active networks in the IT and Telecom world.
Communications Director, The Americas
Carlina is Communications Director for The Americas in Smurfit Kappa Group. She has worked in SK since 2009, when she joined the Company as Communications Director in Colombia. Prior to working in SK, Carlina was an entrepreneur having founded and managed her own +300 people Company in Cali, Colombia; she worked in advertising (Ogilvy and Mather); as marketing manager in TMA, a nationwide travel agency; as a journalist in El Tiempo, and op-ed columnist in other major Colombian newspapers as El Pais, El Nuevo Siglo and the digital magazine Kienyke. Carlina was on the editorial committee of El País for 4 years and is still an op-ed columnist for this newspaper.
VP Communications & CSR South America
Antonietta Varlese, with over 20 years of experience in communications works for AccorHotels Group since 2008 as VP of Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility. She currently manages the strategy for 9 countries and 300 hotels across the region and recently was awarded one of the Top 10 Communications Person in Brazil by Aberje Association.Prior to joining AccorHotels, she was with British American Tobacco as Global Manager of Strategy and Planning, based in the HQ in London. Antonietta also worked in Italy with BAT as General Manager of Communications and Integration, during a company merger period.Antonietta holds a degree in Journalism, MBA in Marketing and extensions from University of Syracuse and University of the Arts London.