Esther Aguilera

President and CEO, Latino Corporate Directors Association

Esther Aguilera, one of Washington's top strategic thinkers, is President and CEO of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI), a position she has held since November 2004. Under her leadership, CHCI continues to aggressively expand national programs and services to Hispanic high school, college, and graduate students—growing the organization's annual budget and national visibility. Propelled by her passion and her steadfast leadership, CHCI revenue has grown by more than 85 percent since 2005. Aguilera leads the growth strategy of the most prominent Latino leadership organization. Working with dignitaries and top leaders of every sector, CHCI develops Latino leaders by providing extraordinary access to the halls of power and influence to impact global society.

In October 2012 Aguilera was recognized as one of the 50 Most Influential Latino Leaders by for promoting the advancement of Hispanics in the United States through leadership, community involvement, and professional achievements. In March 2012 she was bestowed the Cross of Isabel la Catolica by the Ambassador of Spain Jorge Dezcallar. The honor was decreed by Royal Proclamation from King Juan Carlos I of Spain. Aguilera was chosen for her extraordinary character and efforts that have improved relations between Spain and the American Latino community.

In February 2011, Aguilera was featured as one of the nation's top 90 female mentoring leaders by Women of Wealth magazine. In 2010, she was awarded the Alumni Seal Award for Service to the Community from her alma mater, Occidental College in Los Angeles. She has also been recognized as one of the 100 most influential Hispanics in Washington, D.C.; was featured in Latino Leaders magazine's 2007 women's issue for her positive impact in the community; and was presented with Hispanic magazine's 2006 Latina Excellence Award in Education.

Aguilera is a member of numerous boards, including the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR), the Susan G. Komen Global Race Advisory Committee, the CEO Advisory Board of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), and the Independent Sector’s NGen Fellows Selection Committee. She holds a B.A. in public policy from Occidental College, Los Angeles. A native of Mexico, she relocated with her family to Los Angeles in 1972. Overcoming numerous obstacles, today Aguilera has achieved the American dream. She is married and the mother of two wonderful boys, Mackie and Jacob.


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