I am Jaime Flores ’80, a College of Business alum and the first president of the Illinois State University Latin@ Alumni Network (LAN).

I am a Redbird at heart and have served the University in many ways, including  as Association of Latin American Students (ALAS) president, an admissions counselor, and a Board of Trustees member. Most recently I was honored by the Alumni Association as the 2015 recipient of the Senator John W. Maitland Jr. Commitment to Education Award. Even my oldest daughter, Elizabeth ’12, is a Redbird! Now I spend my time as owner and operator of Tamale Hut Café, located in Riverside, and as LAN president.

Why LAN?

Illinois State University has experienced a growing Latino student enrollment, with a majority attending and graduating since 2000. In May 2014, over 60 Latino alumni came together in an effort to determine interest to form a group. From there a core group of our peers have dedicated time, talents, and treasurers to begin the Latin@ Alumni Network.

What is LAN doing?

The mission of LAN is to establish, maintain, and promote a network for the empowerment and advancement of Latin@ alumni, students, faculty, and staff at Illinois State University. Our vision is to be a leading partner in the success of Illinois State University through the significant engagement of Latin@ alumni. To date, we have developed the LAN constitution, elected officers, met with Illinois State Latino students and administrators, helped fellow alumni reconnect with our alma mater, assisted in student recruitment activities, and raised over $6,000 to utilize towards student scholarships!

How can alumni help?

Join LAN! We have a lot of ideas and need great people like you to help turn the ideas into reality. Engage with us via social media through our Facebook page and find out what is going on within the organization regularly. Consider making a gift to the Latin@ Alumni Network to help fulfill our largest goal to provide student scholarships. Lastly, support LAN events!

What’s coming up next?

Recently our network should has received an invitation from University President and Mrs. Larry Dietz for an evening of dining and conversation in honor of the Illinois State University Latin@ Alumni Network on Tuesday, June 16. We hope you will join us. Space is limited, so please return response cards by June 2. If you have questions regarding the dinner, please contact Presidential and Trustee Events at (309) 438-8790 or UniversityEvents@IllinoisState.edu.

I would welcome the opportunity to work with you and others in growing LAN. Please feel free to contact me at (708) 261-3609 to ask any questions or just to say hello.

Together we can make a difference!

Jaime Flores ‘80
Illinois State University, LAN president