Staff

Alex Nogales  | President & CEO

Alex Nogales co-founded the National Hispanic Media Coalition in 1986 with two colleagues in response to profound underrepresentation and misrepresentation of the Latino community in the media. He was elected NHMC president in the late 90s, after a decade challenging the broadcast license of any station that failed to hire Latinos in FCC mandated numbers. Today, Alex champions the policies and practices that bring Latinos online, support Latino media owners and content creators and diversify the news and entertainment industry.

Alex and the Multi-Ethnic Media Coalition brokered the first-ever signed agreements with each of the four major TV networks in the country to publicly disclose the number of people of color making decisions on content at every level of their studio operations. NHMC convened concerned groups representing communities of color to form the Multi-Ethnic Media Coalition, which negotiated for the inclusion of a diversity commitment from the networks in these historic Memorandum of Understandings. It created a lasting effect still felt in Hollywood today and led the Washington Post to write, “If TV looks far more diverse today than film, it’s due in large part to the work of Nogales and his colleagues.”

When Latinos in English and Spanish language television were undercounted by the ratings giant Nielsen, Alex led the National Latino Media Council fight to force the company to address the inaccuracies so the use of the data would not lead to limiting Latino employment opportunities in English-language television or discourage the development of Latino-themed programming.

Alex has grown NHMC into a leader in the fight against hate speech and the preeminent media watchdog for Latino communities. NHMC led demonstrations against ABC, and its parent company, Disney, for its lack of diversity and boycotts of advertisers supporting radio programs, like the “Howard Stern Show”, “John and Ken Show”, and the “Jose Luis Sin Censura” program that served as platforms for hate. NHMC regularly engages in high-level talks with top cable and broadcast television executives, urging them to ensure fairness and accuracy in their stories touching on the Latino community.

After repeatedly calling for a government analysis of the connection between hate speech and hate crimes against Latinos, NHMC commissioned its own landmark studies and polls on the harmful effects of the underrepresentation and misrepresentation of Latinos in the media. Following the NHMC-organized protests of Disney, the company has hired Latinos who have graduated from NHMC’s TV writers program and produced Elena of Avalor, the first Latina Disney princess series. Lou Dobbs left CNN after Alex met with CNN president Jonathan Klein to discuss the host’s irresponsible fear-mongering about Latinos and prominent corporate advertisers withdrew their support of shows airing hate speech as a result of NHMC campaigns.

Alex was profiled in the Los Angeles Times’ Diverse 100, as an individual that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences should nominate to their ranks to achieve greater diversity in Hollywood. Alex has been called on to comment on diversity in entertainment, open and affordable communication policy and hate speech as a guest on TV programs, including PBS Newshour and CNN Tonight, and in top print outlets including the Associated Press, the New York Times and USA Today. He frequently writes opinion pieces for Fox News Latino and, prior to his work with NHMC, earned multiple Emmy awards as a TV producer. His childhood experience as a migrant farmworker, at a time when businesses posted signs reading “No Dogs or Mexicans Allowed”, drives Alex in his work to ensure that Latinos are able to walk in any door.

Brenda Rivas | Senior Vice President, Human Resources & Operations

Brenda Rivas created and formalized the Department of Human Resources at the National Hispanic Media Coalition, where she balances the budget, secures staff benefits, coordinates key fundraising events and supports the board of directors in setting and reaching new goals.

To provide the resources necessary to start, maintain and expand programs to recognize and cultivate Latino talent, Brenda also manages corporate giving, assists in grant writing and plans the organization’s events to recognize local media professionals for their outstanding achievements and contributions to the region’s Latino community.

Brenda oversaw the completion of a grant project to air Spanish-language public service announcements, on Entravision, Univision and Telemundo outlets in California, to let viewers know about affordable Internet programs in their area with top actor and newscaster talent.

She rose the ranks at NHMC, initially joining as the executive assistant to the president and CEO, promoted to Director of Operations and her current role as a senior member of the team. Before NHMC, Brenda worked at top talent agency Management 360 and interned at Identity Films and Mandate Pictures. While in film school, Brenda was a Special Projects Coordinator at USC El Centro Chicano and was part of the Latino Floor Residential Program.

Brenda has a Certificate in Human Resources Management at UCLA Extension and a BA in Cinematic Arts, with an emphasis in Critical Studies and a minor in Spanish, from the University of Southern California. She is a proud Latina, wife, dog mom, USC Trojan, nerd, gamer and Gene Kelly lover.

Carmen Scurato | Vice President, Policy & General Counsel

Carmen Scurato leads the National Hispanic Media Coalition’s policy and government affairs office in Washington, D.C. and is responsible for developing policy and legal strategies that encourage open and affordable communications, innovation, competition, and diversity. Carmen represents NHMC in meetings with decision makers in Congress and at federal regulatory agencies. She has spoken extensively on the ways that communications policy impacts people of color and regularly appears in outlets such as Fast Company, Fortune, The Root and the Guardian to highlight NHMC’s policy and advocacy efforts.

Carmen coordinates organizational responses to regulatory proposals that threaten to widen the digital divide and has co-authored several notable filings for Voices for Internet Freedom highlighting the importance of Net Neutrality and the Lifeline program for communities of color. In 2017, Carmen was the architect of Freedom of Information Act requests that compelled the FCC to release more than 50,000 consumer complaints, previously undisclosed, that drew renewed attention to the importance of preserving the 2015 Open Internet Order. Carmen also supervises NHMC’s legal fellowship program, which provides an opportunity for select students throughout the country to experience media, technology, and telecommunications law and advocacy.

Before joining NHMC, Carmen worked at the Department of Justice and assisted in Medicare fraud investigations, including a False Claims Act case that resulted in the recovery of hundreds of millions of dollars. She also worked at the DOJ Office of Legislative Affairs on large document requests received from congressional oversight committees.

Carmen, a native of Puerto Rico, earned her J.D. from Villanova University School of Law and her B.A. cum laude from New York University.

Carmen also serves on the public policy advisory council to the American Library Association and is a member of the FCC Consumer Advisory Committee. She also sits on the Advisory Board for Full Color Future and was named as one of 2017’s Full Color 50. Carmen is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar, Hispanic National Bar Association, and the Federal Communications Bar Association.

Francella Ochillo | Director, Government & Legal Affairs

Francella Ochillo analyzes and helps implement communication policy initiatives for the National Hispanic Media Coalition, while coordinating government outreach and public engagement efforts that bring Latinos online and on the airwaves. She also develops and maintains strategic relationships with organizational allies to amplify the voices of Latinos in Washington.

Before joining the National Hispanic Media Coalition, Francella worked on securities fraud investigation teams at the Department of Justice. In her time working at DOJ, she helped prosecute banks for corporate misconduct under the False Claims Act and Financial Institutions Reform Recovery and Enforcement Act.

Francella earned a B.S. in Marketing from Morgan State University and a J.D. from John Marshall Law School in Chicago, Illinois. During her studies, she excelled as a moot court competitor and went on to represent the city of Chicago in administrative hearings. In her free time, you can find Francella teaching classes at the YMCA.

Felicia Mora | Special Events Manager

Felicia Mora supports the planning and execution of the National Hispanic Media Coalition’s events throughout the year and serves as the organization’s community liaison, representing the organization at events and conferences within the Los Angeles area.

Before joining NHMC, Felicia worked at various non-profit educational institutions, advocating for low-income people of color. Most recently, she managed Irvine Valley College’s multicultural event programming within their Equity and Diversity Department. There she organized large events including their Día Del Los Muertos and Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

Felicia grew up in Whittier, California and is the first in her family to graduate from college. Originally headed toward the fashion industry, she eventually discovered a passion for understanding intersectional multiculturalism.

Felicia graduated from Cal State Fullerton, where she earned her B.A. in American Studies and a Minor in Art. She is a proud Chicana and Filipina-American. When not at NHMC, she enjoys spending time with her two-year-old son or attending local events, supporting artists in the surrounding community.

Clarissa Corona | Communications Manager

Clarissa Corona manages NHMC’s online outreach, website updates, monthly newsletters and research needs. She consistently increases public engagement to the organization’s online platforms and monitors analytics to optimize ways that the Latino community can contribute, participate and feedback.

Clarissa’s thorough research supports a number of NHMC programs and campaigns. Leaders of underrepresented groups across the nation have drawn upon her research on connections between hate speech and hate crimes, during their convenings around allied anti-hate speech work.

Previously, she interned for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles in their media relations and research communications departments. Clarissa supported brave children fighting for lives, preparing patients and their families to speak to the press and engage in media events. The summer before her final year of college, she interned at two nonprofits – the LAGRANT Foundation, helping to facilitate their educational support for students of color, and Spark Los Angeles, to encourage at-risk youth to complete their education and pursue their career goals.

Clarissa graduated from California State University, Northridge, where she received her B.A. in Communication Studies with honors, after only three years of study. While in school, she also worked as a social media intern for designer Bri Seeley, empowering women through fashion, and as a media relations intern for the Los Angeles Police Department. In her free time, you can find Clarissa thrifting for records or books or catching up on her favorite television shows.

Jordan Rubio | Executive Assistant

Jordan Rubio serves as a direct assistant to CEO Alex Nogales. He also helps with coordinating NHMC events and conducts research to support ongoing NHMC projects.

Before NHMC, Jordan assisted on a variety of film and television projects, including “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” and the documentary “Tickling Giants.” He also worked as an Executive Assistant at the Veteran Artist Program, a nonprofit that facilitated military veteran’s entrance into the world of theater, television, and film.

As an avid fan of television, Jordan will argue with anyone who doesn’t think that “Futurama” is the greatest television show of all time. Jordan attended New York University where he received a B.S. in Psychology and Business of Entertainment Media and Technology.