UTSA Associate Provost Lisa Firmin honored as National Latina Leader

Lisa Firmin receives award

USHCC board member Elizabeth Berman (left) and UTSA's Lisa Firmin

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(Oct. 22, 2010)--Lisa Firmin, UTSA associate provost for faculty and student diversity and recruitment, was honored recently as a National Latina Leader by the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. She was among a group of 10 women honored at the USHCC National Convention and Business Expo in Dallas.

"The USHCC recognizes and celebrates the successes and achievements of Latinas who have made and continue to make great strides as entrepreneurs, corporate, community and civic leaders," said Javier Palomarez, USHCC president and CEO. "The National Latina Leaders being honored by the USHCC embody the values of the Hispanic community and of our organization, and more significantly, the power of the 20 million Latinas across the United States."

Firmin, who retired from the U.S. Air Force as a colonel and the highest-ranking Latina in July, was honored for distinguished service in the U.S. Armed Forces. Her 30-year career included being awarded the Legion of Merit and the Bronze Star, among numerous other awards, as well as being the first colonel to command the expeditionary mission support group at Balad Air Base in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom. She served as commander of the Air Force ROTC Detachment 842 at UTSA from 2006 until her retirement and led the detachment to earn the Right of Line Award in 2009 as best in the nation.

This is the first year USHCC has recognized a Latina in the military.

"I'm extremely honored to be the first woman from the Armed Services chosen for this award," said Firmin. "I accept it on behalf of and in appreciation of all the Hispanic women who are serving their country admirably all over the world."

Founded in 1979, the USHCC promotes the economic growth and development of Hispanic entrepreneurs and represents the interests of nearly 3 million Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States that generate nearly $400 billion annually. It also serves as the umbrella organization for more than 200 local Hispanic chambers in the United States and Puerto Rico.