Toni Rivera-Joachin was recently appointed the permanent Executive Director of Centro Hispano. Rivera-Joachin’s main focus is to secure the 51-year legacy of Centro Hispano as the oldest Latino non-profit in Wisconsin.
Rivera-Joachin succeeded Dr. Tony Baez earlier this year, as he became an Independent Consultant in Latino issues, civil rights, educational change and community nonprofits. Dr. Baez, who was executive director for 8 years says, “When I was Executive Director of Centro Hispano, I chose Toni as my Associate Director because I was convinced that she had the preparation and commitment to fill the job. It was my intent all along that I would mentor someone to take my position, and for me, Toni was clearly the person to do so. When I decided to move on to other national and international work, I knew Toni was ready to take my place, and she has demonstrated that. With every Executive Director, will of necessity comes a new vision and a new way of operating. This will be the case with Toni. I support Toni in her role and wish her the best in leading Centro Hispano.”
Rivera-Joachin comes to Centro Hispano with a wealth of experience built from twenty-one years of professional and executive management experience working in complex and non-profit organizations. Prior to Centro Hispano Milwaukee, while at Children’s Hospital, Rivera-Joachin served as the Project Ujima Manager, mentoring violence intervention programs across the United. Her success is highlighted by the fact that through her vision, collaboration and determination, the intake of new clients dropped from 8% to less that 1% within a matter of 2 years. Her efforts to keep the less that 1% measure were sustained until her departure in November (2014) Rivera-Joachin achieved the most successful violence intervention program that integrates medical and social for youth and adult victims and received national recognition. Other work experience includes developing outcome assessments and quality assurance for 200 Girl Scout council-wide programs,, affecting 15,000 girls and 2,500 volunteers at the Girl Scouts of Milwaukee Area, while successfully initiating, developing and implementing a school-based parent education program for teen parents at the Aurora Weier Educational Center in 2000.
“Centro Hispano has a legacy as the oldest Latino non-profit in Wisconsin, and we must tell others what we do,” Rivera explained to El Conquistador earlier this summer. The way she sees herself and Centro Hispano securing the legacy is by focusing in financial stability, organizational sustainability, and community and employee engagement.” With organizational sustainability Rivera-Joachin says they will be changing and modifying themselves to assess the needs that are happening in the community and find ways to meet those needs for the organization to sustain itself overtime. Rivera-Joachin also brings a new theme to Centro Hispano, “One team, one goal” as she explains they need to “work together to sustain the organization and ultimately have the greatest impact on the community.”
Rivera-Joachin was born and raised in the Milwaukee Southside, and has experienced what Centro Hispano has done for the community at a personal level. “I feel like I have done a full circle in my life, I have come back to the neighborhood I grew up in, and for me it’s an honor and a privilege to say that I grew up here, and now I am raising my own family here. Centro Hispano is one piece of the puzzle to building the community, local businesses and relationships.”
Newly appointed Chairman of the Board, Julio Maldonado, states, “ Toni will be a great asset to the organization and will help secure its legacy in our city. With new leadership comes new re-structure and positive change, and Toni and I plan to succeed at doing so!”