2020 Top Florida Latino Lideres Award Recipient
Maribel Garrett is a Latina Mover N’ Shaker from Tampa, Florida.
Latin Times Magazine: Where are you and your family from? What is your Hispanic heritage?
Maribel Garrett: I was born and raised in the beautiful Caribbean island of Puerto Rico
Latin Times Magazine: Tell us about what you do for a living and how you got into it
Maribel Garrett: I am currently the Director of Admissions for Corbett Preparatory School of IDS, a PreK 3-8th grade independent school in Tampa. Prior to that I worked for HCC for many years. I have always been in the field of education. I am a true believer that education can change the world.
Latin Times Magazine: During Covid-19, tell us about your Biggest Challenge/obstacle and how you overcame it/or are overcoming it
Maribel Garrett: Believe it or not, the biggest challenge, has been having to limit interactions with family and friends. As you would expect, part of being Hispanic is saying hello and giving each other a hug and a kiss. The pandemic has really made us find other ways to show how much we love and care for each other. Whether it’s bringing a meal to someone, or giving someone a call (I know right, that sounds crazy!) Using technology to our advantage and coming together in many creative ways in order to be safe while keeping in touch.
Latin Times Magazine: Tell us about your biggest achievement, and how you achieved it (Covid or non-related)
Maribel Garrett: my familia. I am a proud mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend. Being able to find a balance between all these roles is hard. But it is in hard work to find that balance that we feel the most successful.
Latin Times Magazine: What is next for you? What can people expect to see from you?
Maribel Garrett: I want to continue to have an impact in the life of our Hispanic students and our community in general. By being a part of Tampa Hispanic Heritage, Inc and the Mayor’s Hispanic Advisory Council, I have the opportunity to bring about change for our community. Being a member of these organizations gives me a chance to be the voice to many that, due to language or other circumstances are unable, or afraid, to speak to their needs. I want to be that voice that helps bring about those changes. I want to be able to continue to educate our younger generation. Help them learn about their history and help them understand that each of us have our own story that helped us become who we are. Help them look back in time so they can learn from it and create their own future, their new story. Motivate them to become the best version of themselves.
Latin Times Magazine: What words of encouragement can you offer?
Maribel Garrett: Never stop learning. Education is the key to success both personally and professionally. Being informed will help you become an independent thinker and allow you to make your own decisions. Ask he questions, ask why. Let the answers help you make your own mind about whatever topic you are researching. Make informed decisions: your own decisions! Be yourself, not matter what others may say or think.
Latin Times Magazine: What is YOUR comida Latina favorita?
Maribel Farrett: un buen plato de arroz, gandules y pernil puertorriqueño (y guineos en escabeche por el lado)