Marcela Denniston – SVL Cultura Ambassador


Marcela Denniston is a Brazilian American living in California. Born in Sao Paulo, Brazil Marcela moved to New Jersey, United States with her mother at the age of 4.  Marcela is the first person in her immediate family to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in Computer Information Systems and an MBA: International Business.

At 17, she joined the US Navy where she began her career in Cyber Operations and Intelligence. During her military service, she received several medals, including a Joint Service Commendation Medal and a Navy and Marine Corp Achievement Medal for her work in the Navy Cyber Defense Operations Center and the National Security Agency.  After leaving the Navy, Marcela worked in several consulting roles, nationally and internationally supporting the growth and development of Cyber Security Operations and Products. Today, Marcela works as a cyber security consultant for government organizations, start-ups and venture capital firms.

Outside of work, Marcela is a passionate social activist supporting equality and inclusion for minority groups worldwide. She is an active member of several organizations focused on establishing meaningful connections between LATAM entrepreneurs and US investors including the Latino Start Up Alliance and BayBrazil. Marcela also participates in empowerment and education of STEM careers for young females through Girls Can Hack and IGNITE Worldwide.

Marcela is also a community contributor; she is a volunteer soccer coach for the American Youth Soccer Association as a girls U10 soccer coach. This opportunity allows her to help young girls build confidence and camaraderie with each other. Her team won the 2016 Hirschel Cup for the U10 girls age group.

Marcela currently lives in Foster City, CA with her husband and two daughters and hopes to continue her contributions to the Latino and female community through an initiative to empower, encourage and educate Latinas in technology and engineering fields called Poderosa. Marcela envisions her efforts will create a movement of young girls looking to pursue careers in technology fields and ultimately change the norm for women’s equality in business.

Jorge Titinger – SVL Cultura Ambassador

Jorge is the President and Chief Executive Officer, and a member of the Board of Directors for SGI and has been since February 2012. Mr. Titinger previously worked for Verigy Ltd., where he served as president and CEO. Prior to Verigy, Mr. Titinger held executive positions at Form Factor, Inc., KLA-Tencor Corporation, and Applied Materials, Inc.

Jorge Titinger - SVL Cultura AmbassadorBefore his 17 year career in the semiconductor equipment industry, he spent 10 years in the computer industry at Hewlett-Packard Company, MIPS Computer Systems, Inc. and Silicon Graphics, Inc. Mr. Titinger was recognized for his excellence in leadership as a 2013 CEO of the Year at the Annual CEO World Awards, in the category, “Operational Effective.” He was also named to the Hispanic Information Technology Executive Council (HITEC)’s prestigious HITEC 100 list and received the SVL (Silicon Valley Latino) Gente’s Choice Award in the Latino Trailblazer category. He holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering and an M.S. degree in Engineering Management from Stanford University. Jorge also serves as the Board Chair for the Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley.

We are also proud to note that he is one of the Latino executives who inspires us by the work he leads. He was also recently named by Silicon Valley Latino to the inaugural “SVL List” in the Corporate category

Laura Gomez, Latina Entrepreneur, interview on Nueva Latina Pt 2


Laura Gomez, Latina Entrepreneur, interview on Nueva Latina


We are proud to share part one of this interview of Laura Gomez who is one of our Advisory Board members and a 40 under 40 Latin@s2Watch. Let’s give her a big hand in the great job she has done and is doing!


Ricardo Benavidez – SVL Cultura Ambassador


Ricardo has been with Cisco since 1999. As a Community Relations Manager, he oversees corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs in Silicon Valley as well as community investment in key locations worldwide.

Ricardo Benavidez - SVL Cultura Ambassador

Through private-public partnerships, Ricardo directs Cisco’s cash, products, and people into communities to generate positive and sustainable change in education and economic development. Prior to joining Community Relations, he was influential in the adoption of the Cisco Networking Academy program into emerging countries. Ricardo was responsible for growing and maintaining partnerships with other technology companies in support of developing IT skills in students worldwide. After four successful years in sales and engineering operations, Ricardo returned to his CSR roots in 2009. Ricardo holds business degrees from Santa Clara University and Saint Mary’s College of California. His community insight and business acumen enable Ricardo to collaborate across government, business, and nonprofit sectors.

Ivonne Valdes – SVL Cultura Ambassador


Ivonne Valdes

VP WW Go-To-Market Technology Services Sales, Marketing & Operations

Hewlett-Packard Company


As Hewlett Packard’s worldwide Technology Services Go-to-Market leader, Ivonne and her team are responsible for driving sales of HP’s premier Technology Services at Hardware point-of-sale.

Ivonne is an instrumental leader within the HP Enterprise Group, advocating solution selling and developing Go-To-Market programs that garner lifelong customers while staying in step with the changing IT landscape.

She works closely with HP customers to understand the needs of the market and strives to go above and beyond by working across HP to create go to market programs that exceed customer requirements.

Ivonne Valdes - SVL Cultura Ambassador


Ivonne is a highly-accomplished executive and is experienced in building and leading successful global sales teams. With over 25 years of experience, Ivonne takes a creative approach to solving problems of the CXO and has exemplified an excellent ability to link technology to business impact and ROI. Additionally, she has the proven ability to develop and implement strategies that deliver organizational efficiencies.  Throughout her career, Ivonne has demonstrated success building rapport across cultures, levels and functions and has guided virtual teams through complex business challenges.  Prior to joining HP, Ivonne held numerous global sales leadership positions at Sun/Oracle.


Currently based in Los Gatos, Ivonne holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Clinical Psychology from Caldwell College. In 2014, Ivonne was recognized as one of the TOP 100 most influential Hispanic Professionals in the Information Technology Industry.  Most recently, Ivonne completed the Latino Board Leadership Academy and is an active supporter of the Silicon Valley Hispanic Foundation and My New Red Shoes.  In her spare time she enjoys traveling, reading, family-time and donating her time toward philanthropic activities.

LOFT & Google’s Coding Jam Session


On Friday May 2nd Google and the Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) hosted a Latinos On The Fast Track (LOFT) Coding Jam Session at Silver Creek High School in San Jose. During this Coding Jam Session Google employees introduced minority youth to computer coding as an effort to bridge career paths in technology fields to fill the skills gap. Antonio Tijerino, CEO and President of the Hispanc Heritage Foundation delivered encouraging remarks to the attending youth at this special event. SVL was delighted to cover this for our audience.

LOFT & Google's Coding Jam Session

On Friday May 2nd Google and the Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) hosted a Latinos On The Fast Track (LOFT) Coding Jam Session at Silver Creek High School.

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María Del Socorro Castañeda-Liles, Ph.D. – SVL Cultura Ambassador


María Del Socorro Castañeda-Liles, Ph.D. is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at Santa Clara University where she teaches in the areas of Latinas, Catholicism, race, class, gender, and sexuality.

María Del Socorro Castañeda-Liles, Ph.D. - SVL Cultura Ambassador


She is currently working on two projects.  The first is a book tentatively titled: Talk to Her: Contextualizing Narratives on Everyday Faith, Devotion, and Existence Across Generations of U.S. Mexican Women.  This is a study of women between the ages of 18 and 82 and their experiences growing up Catholic. Some of the issues she addresses include: race, class, gender, sexuality, religion, and generation. The second project is an online resource/volume titled: Portraits of the Dream: The Importance of Investing in Undocumented America with Dr. Josef Castañeda-Liles, which features the narratives of sixteen professionals, artists, academics, and activists who were either formerly undocumented or are currently undocumented and have been public about their status.  María Del Socorro also serves on the board of Sabor Del Valle, which is an annual celebration of local wine, food, art, music and the cultural richness of the Latino community, with proceeds benefiting three worthy nonprofits that provide social and educational services to individuals in need.

Ray Singh Castaneda – SVL Cultura Ambassador


Ray Singh Castaneda is the Chair of the Sabor del Valle.  He’s deeply committed to provide services to children and youth and has dedicated many years to promoting Latino/Latina and boutique vintners as well as restaurants in Northern California.  Sabor del Valle was founded in 2009 and is an annual celebration of local wine, food, art, music and cultural richness of the Latino community with proceeds that benefit worthy non profits that provide social and educational services to individuals in need.  Some of them include Rotacare San Jose Free Medical Clinic, Teen Challenge Alum Rock Women & Children’s Center, Valdez Math Institute and TeatroVision.

Ray Castaneda - SVL Cultura Ambassador

Sabor del Valle is proud to convene Latino/Latina and boutique vintners from Santa Clara County, Calaveras County, Sacramento Valley, Napa, Sonoma and Mendecino County for its unique siganture event.

Additionally, Ray has been an active member of the Rotary Club of San Jose. Rotary is one the largest service organizations in the world and the Rotary Club of San Jose is one of the largest in the West Coast. Ray participates as an active member in the following committees: RotaCare, Hospitality, Fish, Event and Fun & Fellowship.


Please visit to learn more about Sabor del Valle and to purchase tickets for this year’s event.



Julissa Ramirez – SVL Cultura Ambassador

The SVL Cultura Ambassador continues with Julissa Ramirez

Julissa Ramirez - SVL Cultura Ambassador


Julissa currently works for Intel Corporation as an Industrial Engineer.  She was born in the Dominican Republic, raised in NYC, and became a member of the Silicon Valley community three years ago.  Julissa attended the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY, where she obtained a B.S. in Electrical/Mechanical Engineering Technology, a M.S. in Manufacturing and Mechanical Systems.  Julissa currently serves as the President of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), Silicon Valley Professional Chapter and the Public Relations Chair for the Intel Latino Network.  She is also one of the Founding Members of LISTAS (Latinas In Stem2 To Achieve Success) and sits on the board of Kids’ Vision. Julissa’s main interest lies in inspiring our minority and underrepresented youth to get involved in STEM driven programs and achieve educational success.