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individual Awards

These Diversity & Inclusion Awards illustrate that diverse individuals can and do succeed in the financial advice business and their stories are meant to inspire others.

Our Lifetime Achievement winner has demonstrated outstanding leadership for decades. Each of our See It, Be It Role Models have at least 10 years of experience in the industry. Rising Stars have fewer than 10 years in the business, however, they show excellent promise to be an industry leader for many years into the future.

See it, Be it Role Model

Louis Barajas

CEO Wealth Management LAB Los Angeles

Louis Barajas, the son of Mexican immigrants, launched his financial planning firm in 1991 in East Los Angeles, using auctioned equipment from failing savings and loan institutions. He has dedicated his business to helping Latinos acquire access to financial information and education to dispel the constraints of a cultural mindset.

His own 12-person team, including two planners, is entirely Hispanic, and operates as one of the few Latino-owned firms in the space. Clients range from international Latino celebrities to much less sophisticated families, for whom he uses a generous fee scale.

"But I always treat the celebrities the same way as those from the barrio," Mr. Barajas says.

A prolific author, he has published five books geared to Latinos. His first, "The Latino Journey to Financial Greatness," led to appearances on CBS, CNN, NPR, and a weekly column in La Opinion, the largest U.S. Spanish-language newspaper, as well as People en Espa?nol magazine.

Mr. Barajas is committed to helping both minority advisers and clients succeed and prosper. He mentors through the CFP Board Center for Financial Planning Diversity Advisory Group, and teaches as an adjunct professor at Golden Gate University.

Vanessa Drucker

Lifetime Achievement

Rising Stars

See it, Be it Role Models

Outstanding Practices

Diversity Champions

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