For the fourth year in a row, CTLatinoNews.com brings you a list of the five top stories we published during 2015. They are selected based on the number of readers, comments and overall interest on our news site as well as social media. It’s always difficult to narrow down the list, as we are proud to have published numerous stories that report on key events within the Latino community in the state and accomplishments by many that continue to break down barriers for Hispanics.
There are other 2015 stories that we believe also deserve a mention. They include: a profile of Latinos in Willimantic who say they are forgotten, a touching first person account of the alleged Herbalife scam that targets Hispanics, New Haven’s Jorge Perez named as the state’s Banking Commissioner and Damaris Whitaker, the first Latina minister named at the historic Center Church in Hartford. We’ve also published numerous stories on the role of the Hispanic Federation, which expanded into Connecticut, and LPRAC, both agencies that are tireless advocates for Hispanics in Connecticut.
The top five stories for 2015 that we selected represent issues that seem to stir quite a bit of passion among Hispanics, some were political stories, and others represented the history of our community in different ways.
Latino Democratic Leaders Challenge Malloy On His Silence In Supporting Segarra
As early as 11 months before the municipal elections this past November, Latino political leaders across the state said they realized something was awry in the Hartford mayoral race. They questioned Governor Dannel Malloy’s lack of support for incumbent Pedro Segarra, the nation’s only Puerto Rican mayor, who had worked tirelessly for the Governor in his election the previous year. The outcome of this political saga is now history, but our story in January made public what many said reflected the true view of the state’s Democratic party regarding Latinos.
Juan Fuentes: A Legacy Written With Light, The Latino Community Remembers Its Photo Historian
The state’s Latino community lost one of its best in 2015, Juan M. Fuentes Vizcarrondo. Since 1967, Juan began to document Connecticut’s growing Hispanic community through his camera. For the next 40 years, he continued to capture nearly every important news, social and artistic event in the community. Although he said he never thought about his photos’ artistic quality, his work won several awards from arts organizations and was featured in exhibits. His passing brought an end to an era for many Latinos, who not only lost a historian, but also a friend.
New Haven Family Business Is Their Sofrito
Yes indeed, one of our top five of 2015 is our story on Sofrito Ponce, made in New Haven. We thought of it as a good Latino business story, but generations of Puerto Ricans grew up with it and have very strong feelings about it because when you couldn’t make your own, even your mother swore by its quality. A family owned business, it is now under second generation management and CTLatinoNews.com readers want them to expand their distribution! We were amazed to hear from so many Connecticut ‘expats’ in Florida, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and other states, saying they had not found a good replacement for it. Apparently, it goes to show, perhaps, not all sofritos are created equal.
Latino Victories And Losses In November’s Municipal Elections
Our report on the morning of Wednesday, November 5th, 2015 – the day after municipal elections in the state – reached a record number of readers as it was shared by so many searching for one location where they could find information on how Latino candidates had done around the state in the election. CTLatinoNews.com was the only media that worked to track all Latino candidates who were running for municipal offices that included town councils and Boards of Education. We were able to report that of the more than 60 candidates for these positions, more than half had succeeded in getting elected. We were especially pleased when Latinos from smaller towns reached out to us to be included in the list, which we did update. A special shout out to Steve Ortiz, from Willington who won a seat to the Region 19 Board of Education whose message reminded us, once again, that Latinos are immersing themselves in their communities, large and small.
Connecticut, National Retirees Expected To Be Hit Hard By Puerto Rico’s Economic Crisis
The Puerto Rico debt crisis continues to be of great concern for the more than 250,000 Puerto Ricans around the state. While CTLatinoNews.com worked to report regularly on the twists and turns of this saga, our story on how a default by the commonwealth would impact all retirees in Connecticut, brought to light an additional perspective to the story.