Meet the Staff
Gaby Ortigoni President / CEO
A blend of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Dominican and Floridian, Gaby Ortigoni has been serving the Central Florida Hispanic community for 20 years. As the President of HCCMO, her duty is to ensure that the Chamber fulfills its responsibilities to its members.Throughout her professional career, Ortigoni has been strongly committed to business development, strategic relationship building, economic development, international business, government affairs, and comprehensive community development.
Ortigoni has received numerous awards, including the Orlando Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 Award & Women Who Mean Business, Hispanic Women Who Make the Difference Award from La Prensa, Orange County Sheriff’s Office Community Service Award, and the Orlando Police Department’s Good Citizenship Award, among others. Gaby has demonstrated strong leadership skills and community involvement.
Pedro Turushina Vice President
Pedro Turushina is the Vice President for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando (HCCMO) responsible for the strategic direction of all aspects of the Chamber related to memberships, investors, operations and overall state of the organization. As well as trustee recruitment, engagement, and retention. Mr. Turushina develops proactive programs to increase membership engagement, while also spearheading strategic community and governmental efforts to cultivate and build partnerships with key stakeholders. In his role, he drives innovation, fosters collaboration, and positions the HCCMO as a catalyst for transforming lives through business ownership, and strengthening the Hispanic community in Central Florida and surrounding areas.
A native of Colombia, Pedro has lived in Orlando since he was 13 years old. He attended the University of Central Florida, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts. As a dedicated community leader, Pedro organizes and manages multiple groups forming a collaborative business mindset to create a bridge of connectivity between consumers and local enterprises with the goal of yielding economic growth.
Prior to working at HCCMO, Pedro was the founder and Creative Director at a reputable and prominent marketing agency based in Central Florida. As an entrepreneur, Pedro focused on finding opportunities to participate in programs that deliver access to tangible business opportunities, connect with procurement decision-makers, and offer practical support to the Central Florida entrepreneurial community. As part of his previous efforts in strengthening the business community, he joined HCCMO and Prospera in various signature events as a key marketing resource to strategize from the conceptual stage to the creation and execution of their programs. Pedro is committed to assisting the HCCMO with cultivating strategic partnerships, implementing innovative outreach strategies, and developing robust targeted communications, all anchored in the high value he places in exercising authenticity.
Alejandra Escobar Director of Membership & Business Development
Alejandra Escobar is originally from Colombia and relocated to Orlando in 2002. She is a professional in Entrepreneurship, Marketing, and Management, a Holistic Coach in Emotional Intelligence, and a Meditation Instructor.
She is the founder of Empodera Tu Camino, a brand she created to reach women in leadership positions of the Hispanic community. She has had the opportunity to work and lead teams of different cultures, nationalities, and age groups for the past 13 years. She identifies the individual strengths and uses the best available resources to place them in positions where their skills can best benefit the company and increase its economic growth.
Alejandra combines her knowledge in the professional, personal, and emotional fields so that her community can recognize the magnificent power within and can reach its full potential. She is an expert in storytelling and an advocate believer in bonding, connecting, and creating long-lasting personal and business relationships.
Nelia Castro Programs & Events Manager
Phone: 407-428-5870 Ext. 303
Nelia is a personable and dedicated customer service professional with extensive experience in the hospitality industry. She is an enthusiastic and results-oriented woman with demonstrated passion building relationship, cultivating partnerships and growing businesses.
She was born in Bogota, Colombia, and moved to Orlando 20 years ago. She graduated from UCF/ Rosen College of Hospitality Management with a B.S in Event Management. She did an exchange program in Hospitality Management & Tourism at MODUL University of Vienna, Austria, which changed her life and opened her eagerness to explore the world and its different cultures.
She is passionate about diversity, and she is certified in Diversity and Inclusion awarded by the Office of Diversity & Inclusion at the University of Central Florida.
Nelia loves to travel and has visited 21 different countries, and countless cities & towns. She also enjoys hiking, cooking, & spending time with her family & friends.
“A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” Lao Tzu
Gricel Valera Engagement & Operations Manager
Phone: 407-428-5870 Ext. 302
Gricel Valera is the Finance & Office Manager for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando (HCCMO). Responsible for financial statements to conform generally accepted accounting principle; assets are safeguarded; guidelines of grantors and donors are complied with; and finances are managed with accuracy, efficiency, and transparency. She comes with extensive experience in client relations, all aspects of business management and Human resources. She managed multiple teams to achieve positive results in metrics, budgets, financial forecasting, planning, and modelling tools within the channels.
She was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to New York at a young age. Proud daughter of a single mom who showed her the importance of being a hard worker to achieve her goals. She is a mother of 3 who enjoys family time, cooking and everything Disney. Her favorite quote is “Magic is believing in yourself, if you can do that, you can make anything happen”.
Andrea Bracho Membership Coordinator
Phone: 407-428-5870 Ext. 311
Andrea Bracho is the Event Coordinator for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando (HCCMO). She is in charge of planning and executing our events, contacting vendors, organizing deadlines, and managing guest lists. Andrea is also responsible for the budgets for each event. In addition, she is responsible for coordinating the event venues, managing the invoices, collecting payments, and solving any possible problems that may arise before, during, and after each event.
She is Venezuelan and has lived in Orlando since 2019.
Andrea loves the beach and the outdoors. She also likes to travel and meet new places and people. During her free time, she enjoys Crossfit and creates abstract paintings. Currently, Andrea is embarking on the journey of developing her brand of handmade handbags and accessories made in Colombia, with which she will help small entrepreneurs who seek to grow and promote their crafts.
She identifies with HCCMO because she knows how important it is to encourage people to move forward despite adversity while motivating them to grow professionally and personally. Andrea says that a small act can make us better and help us grow. All dreams are possible if you set your goals and work for them.
Isabella Morales Events Coordinator
Isabella Morales was born in Cali, Colombia. She moved to Nashville, TN when she was 1 and then to Orlando, FL when she was 16.
Isabella fell in love with film at a very young age which eventually led her to study film production at Valencia College. During her time there she was able to Direct, Produce, 2nd AD and act in short films. She has now earned her A.S in film production and likes to film as a hobby. She is now on her journey as a full-time student to earn her bachelors degree in business management at Rollins College.
Isabella is hoping that in the near future she is able to combine both her film and business degree in order to accomplish her dreams of opening her own film business, where she can help out the community with any film related needs.
Media & Graphics Team Media & Graphics Team
Phone: 407-428-5870 Ext. 314
Brenda Gunn Office Assistant of the President/CEO
Brenda was born in California to parents from Puerto Rico and El Salvador. She has over 15 years of executive-administrative experience in various industries such as healthcare, wealth management, hospitality, and non-profit. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Organizational Communication from the University of Central Florida. Her best qualities are that she is a steadfast, organized, self-starter who loves to continuously learn new things. She is a small business owner and a member of the International Association of Administrative Professionals. She enjoys doing yoga and spending time with her husband and beautiful daughter.