Latinas put love on the shoulders of women in need
She started her Love Purse project in March of 2021. As of today, Maria Castro is honored and humbled to say her non-profit organization has collected and donated more than 6000 purses for Women in need.
When it comes to women's accessories. Handbags are a women's best friend. Handbags help enhance confidence in women and empower them too.
According to global handbags market reports, The age group ranging from 15-64 years are the main consumer of the handbags market. But not every woman has access to a handbag.
In 2005 Maria joined the community investment team at Comcast where she helps to implement and manage programs that deliver social and business value to their nonprofit organizations and communities. Comcast is a company known for achieving social impact through innovative employee engagement, solid community partnerships, and CSR/DE&I initiatives that include foundation grant giving, volunteer opportunities, and sponsorships of local community events.
As the Regional External Affairs Manager, she helps to identify corporate giving opportunities for Comcast’s core focus areas of youth leadership, volunteerism, digital literacy, and workforce development. Having been born and raised in Chicago’s Pilsen community has brought her back full circle and has allowed her to bring much-needed resources to that community as well as to other incredible nonprofits in the Greater Chicago Region.
“Putting love on the shoulders of women in need, one #LovePurse at a time.”
She is also the Founder/CEO of Inspiration of #LovePurse, a nonprofit that is “putting love on the shoulders of women in need, one #LovePurse at a time” and has collected and gifted almost 6000 purses since March 2021.
She currently serves as the Chairwoman for the Hispanic Scholarship Fund’s Chicago Chapter, Telemundo Chicago’s Action Board, Women’s Business Development Center’s Advisory Council, A Silver Lining Foundation, and the DePaul Art Museum Board of Directors.
She has received numerous award acknowledgments. To name a few they are, Negocios Now, 2019 Who’s Who Hispanic Chicago, 2019 Aurora Regional Hispanic Chamber of Commerce's Hispanic Catalyst Champion, YWCA Woman of Distinction Award, People with Disabilities Champion Award from Seguin Services, Corporate Visionary award from El Valor, 2020 Hispanic Style Latina of Influence, 2020 Today’s Inspired Latina’s Woman of the Year Award, National Diversity Council’s 2021 Top Latino Leader, 2021 Chicago Latina Expo Business Leader Award, International Women’s Day 2022 Honoree, and the 2009 proclamation of Maria Castro day in the City of Aurora.
In the middle of this Summer 2022, I had the pleasure to Interview Maria Castro regarding her career, accomplishments, and what advice she would give to today's Latina and the future Latina.
OLM: How did you become interested in your field?
Maria: I’ve always loved community investment and all that comes with it.
OLM: How did you begin your career?
Maria: I worked in the retail industry as a Director of Marketing and started out hosting community events for our customers. That led me to event planning for some national event companies and working with the communities at large. Never turned back, I loved it!!
OLM: What do you like most about your work?
Maria: Seeing the difference that can be made in a community if everyone shares their Tx3's #TimeTalentsTreasures
OLM: What kinds of accomplishments tend to be valued and rewarded in your field?
Maria: I would say the value is the keyword, if you are doing this for the reward you will fail. Never expect anything in return, the return is what the outcome of your kindness brings to others.
OLM: How does your position fit within the organization/career field/industry?
Maria: I’m blessed to do what I love to do 9-5 for such a philanthropic company, Comcast, as well as after 5:00 Love Purse. In any industry, you have to find a way to give back to the communities and people that support you, so my role is critical to making sure our customers see us in the communities helping to make them a better place to live.
OLM: Why do you feel you are the most suited for this role?
Maria: I’m a Leo, and a Latina. I am able and willing to do what it takes to make a difference in the community, no matter the demographic or location.
OLM: What kind of mindset is required for your duties and responsibilities?
Maria: A positive and grateful mindset. Being the face of the community is a responsibility I don't take lightly.
OLM: What are the areas of opportunity that you foresee in your role?
Maria: On the Love Purse side, so many, to reach more shelters far and wide around the world. Locally to engage more supporters to help with this enormous need. On the Comcast side, still need to find all the jewels in the rough that I have not had the opportunity to reach out to about how we can help their communities and organizations.
OLM: How do you stay inspired and motivated in your role?
Maria: By seeing the true impact of our actions and meeting some people face to face and feeling the difference we are making in their lives. It brings me such joy and satisfaction knowing that when I am no longer here one day, someone will say "look at what she did".
OLM: What advice would you give to today's Latina and the future Latina?
Maria: To know your worth and to share your Tx3's, #TimeTalentsTreasures with other Latinas. Make sure you lift as you rise to help as many up-and-coming leaders. And to surround yourself with like-minded people, especially those who are smarter than you are. And never be afraid to fail, as only then can you prevail