2020 Top Florida Latino Lideres Award Recipient
Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez is a Latina Mover N’ Shaker from South West, Florida.
Latin Times Magazine: Where are you and your family from? What is your Hispanic heritage? Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: I was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1966. I was blessed to be raised by grand uncles; a Judge and a teacher. I am married to Luis Hernandez for 19 years and together we have 4 grown children and 7 grandkids.
Latin Times Magazine: Tell us about what you do for a living and how you got into it Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: I am an Outreach Specialist for the Office of U.S Senator Marco Rubio.
I learned to love business and politics at a young age. One of the most important life lessons I learned from my father is that education is everything, and that if I wanted to achieve anything in life, I could.
I then moved to Orlando, Florida in 1989 where I worked in the flooring business and learned the trade. I later became a business owner and eventually was given the opportunity to be part of the coordination of a political Hispanic campaign. During my time in this role I was involved with the local community as it relates to grassroots organizing, campaign and local political organization. I discovered my joy for public service and eventually was given the opportunity to serve in the Senate in the capacity of an Outreach Specialist.
Latin Times Magazine: In your industry, what would you say separates you from your competition Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: My passion to serve. We all are here to serve the Florida community, and the community at large. Serving in your community and supporting a cause you are passionate about is something you will never regret. It will enrich your life, familiarize you with your community, and connect you to people and ideas that will positively impact your perspective for the rest of your life.
Latin Times Magazine: During Covid-19, tell us about your Biggest Challenge/obstacle and how you overcame it/or are overcoming it Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: The health and safety of Floridians is Senator Rubio’s top priority. The biggest challenge I encountered during COVID-19 is making sure we assist constituents who are in need of assistance during this difficult times. To ensure small businesses, including minority-owned firms and those in underserved communities, have the necessary resources to weather the COVID-19 pandemic.
Latin Times Magazine: Tell us about your biggest achievement, and how you achieved it (Covid or non-related) Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: Thousands of Americans were stuck oversees, that left many Floridian families stranded including a foundation dedicated to training physicians from around the world and also serving the people of Honduras with different medical missions involving Prolotherapy, Vein treatments and ENT. This foundation has been going to Honduras for over 50 years. Most of them were able to make it back home but there were still some physicians and volunteers who couldn’t make it out when the president of Honduras announced that the country was going to be closed down. Dr. Barreto contacted me and our excellent constituent service team ensured that Floridians in Honduras and Peru were able to return home.
Latin Times Magazine: What is next for you? What can people expect to see from you? Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: The hard truth is it’ll be awhile before we can go back to doing things the way we once did, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do everything we can to find a new normal — one that allows us to get back to doing the things that make life worthwhile. I will continue serving in Central Florida and identifying constituent’s needs.
Latin Times Magazine: What words of encouragement can you offer? Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: As humans, we are always overwhelmed by the pressures of the world. My message will be: Believe in yourself, dream big, and trust God. Once you learn how to think positive you will discover your true purpose… And by doing so; it will not only help you reach your full potential in Christ; you will be able to understand the importance of your responsibilities so that you can embrace the beautiful opportunities of life.
Latin Times Magazine: Is there anything I didn’t ask that you would like to share? Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: Unfortunately, most families’ especially Hispanic families in the U.S are not doing well; we are coming apart. We can see it in the declining strength of our families and the increase of suicide among our youths. We need to build good family relationships to help our children feel secured and loved by raising kids who love Jesus.
Latin Times Magazine: What is YOUR comida Latina favorita? Jeannette Quinones- Hernandez: I am hopelessly addicted to Alcapurrias ! I think one of the things that I really love about them is all of the memories that I have associated with them like; Christmas, family gatherings, festivals and good friends. They taste like Puerto Rico!