Anthony Perez; 2021 Top Latino Lider in Florida!

What is your Hispanic Heritage: Cuban

What area of Florida do you live in:  Tampa

What is your profession:  Commercial Banker

Meet Anthony and other Lideres at the Hispanic Heritage Celebration at 3rd Annual FORD Taste Of Latino Festival on Sunday, Oct 17th @ Centro Asturiano! (www.TasteofLatino.com)

Latin Times Magazine: Tell us about what you do for a living and how you got into it

Anthony:  I provide businesses in our community the capital, support and guidance to help them achieve their goals.  As a commercial banker I am trusted advisor to individuals and business owners alike. 

Latin Times Magazine: In your industry, what would you say separates you from your competition

Anthony:  I jokingly say that although you may see me wearing a white collar, I am a blue-collar kind of guy at heart and although I say that jokingly, there is some truth to that.  You see, when my grandparents first arrived from Cuba in the early 1970’s they started a business fixing flat tires.  Sure, after 50+ years of hard work the business has transformed but growing up I experienced the life of a small business owner through my family.  At one point after college, I tried to become part of the family business but quickly realized that God did not equip me with the capacity to mentally manage all that it is to be a business owner.  The appreciation, understanding and compassion of what business owners deal with day to day, is what separates me from many others in my industry. 

Latin Times Magazine:  During Covid-19, tell us about your Biggest Challenge/obstacle and how you overcame it/or are overcoming it.

Anthony:  My biggest challenge was not interacting with people face to face, who knew!  I never realized how dependent I was or should I say am, on in person social interactions.  I was going stir crazy in my house, lol.  Today I have a whole new sense of appreciation for the time I spend with others.  I truly make it a point to cherish every minute of it.    

Latin Times Magazine: Tell us about your biggest achievement, and how you achieved it (Covid or non-related)  

Anthony:  In my life I have learned that the biggest achievements are born from the biggest challenges and that moment came in my mid 20’s.  Through nobody’s fault other than my own, my life was in a state of complete disarray.  For the first time, I felt lost and every hope, truth, and ambition I ever had seemed out of reach.  It was at that time that I reached out for help.  I made myself vulnerable and stopped pretending that everything was ok.  As I began to be honest with myself and others, God’s light began to shine through the clouds.  It was a humbling experience, but I am so grateful that everything I was ever told about myself, my family, my God, my friends, those that care about me…. was TRUE.   

Latin Times Magazine:  What is next for you? What can people expect to see from you?

Anthony:  As a father of a young family, it is my number 1 priority to be a daddy first.  With that said, there continues to be a stirring in my soul to help those in need specifically the homeless. 

For that reason, in early 2022 I plan to launch a 501 c3 Nonprofit called Covered Hearts.  Covered Hearts will be an organization that serves as a reservoir of love, joy & inspiration that permeates the lives of the less fortunate and delivers them the promise of a better tomorrow. 

Stay Tuned, more to come.

Latin Times Magazine:  What does being a U.S. Citizen mean to you?

Anthony:  I consider it an honor and privilege to be part of this great nation.  With that sense of honor and privilege I believe comes a sense of responsibility.  A responsibility to ensure that things are left better off than how you found them.   

Latin Times Magazine:  What is your opinion of the state of affairs in our nation?

Anthony:  Contrary to what others may think, I believe the state of affairs in our nation to be trending in a positive direction. Sure, there are several things I’d change but, in my experience, I have seen so much good.  I have witnessed communities coming together for the better good; uniting for a common purpose that is to have a better tomorrow for our children.  Our children, the youth that will define the country for generations to come…spend time with them and you will see that they are brilliant, loving, competitive and compassionate. We are not a perfect nation, but I believe that we are still one nation under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all.  

Latin Times Magazine: What words of encouragement can you offer?

Anthony:  Look around your community.  Observe your interactions with others.  Share a smile and watch how a smile is returned.  Give of yourself and watch how the community gives back to you.  I believe that all human beings share an innate desire to be appreciated, valued, and belong.  Help others feel that way and I promise you will live a life full of meaning and purpose. 

Latin Times Magazine:  What is YOUR comida Latina favorita?

Anthony:  Abuelas black beans and rice with sliced bananas…yummy!

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