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About Fernando Espuelas:
Focused on politics and current events, Espuelas has interviewed such leading political figures as President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Senate Leader Harry Reid, Governor Jeb Bush, Speaker Newt Gingrich, Chair of the Democratic Party Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, the Chairman of the Republican Party Reince Priebus, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and many other senior national political and cultural figures.
Espuelas developed and launched the first English-language radio talkshow on Univision in 2009. Because of the show’s impact, Espuelas was named by PODER Magazine as one of “The Nation’s 100 Most Influential Hispanics” in 2012.
He is a frequent political analyst on television, radio, print and online. Espuelas’ commentaries for CNN are here and in the HuffingtonPost, here. His op-eds have also appeared in La Opinion, America’s largest circulation Spanish-language newspaper.
Espuelas is focused on empowering and connecting people through media, technology and information. Recognized as one of the Internet’s pioneers by international media and academic institutions, Espuelas has been at the forefront of online communities and the social networks that they have fostered.
Espuelas’ endeavors have earned him worldwide recognition. Time magazine and CNN named him one of the “Leaders of the Millennium”, while Crain’s New York Business magazine gave him its “All-Star” business leader award. Espuelas was also a recipient of Latin Trade Magazine’s Bravo award for Internet CEO of the Year.
Espuelas has been ranked on the power lists of several major media including: CNN, Time, The Hollywood Reporter, The Industry Standard, Latino Leaders Magazine, Red Herring Magazine, Silicon Alley Reporter, Hispanic Business Magazine, Upside Magazine, Hispanic Magazine, LatinVision and others.
The World Economic Forum chose him as a “Global Leader of Tomorrow” in 2000. In 2007, he became a Henry Crown Fellow at the Aspen Institute. Espuelas was also named “Immigrant of the Day” by Immigration Daily in 2008. And in 2009 and 2010, the U.S. Hispanic IT Executive Council (HITEC) included Espuelas in its HITEC 100, the list of “Most Influential Hispanics and Rising Stars in Information Technology”.
Espuelas founded and was Chairman and CEO of StarMedia, a pioneering multi-platform media company for Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking audiences worldwide. At StarMedia, he built the first online network to transcend national barriers, becoming the first and most recognized pan-Latin new media brand in Latin America and the United States, eventually serving over 25 million people per month in the very early days of the Internet.
Initially using only his personal credit card to start the company, Espuelas went on to raise over $500 million dollars for StarMedia in a combination of private and public offerings, including raising the first dollar of venture funding and the first IPO for a Latin Internet company.
The rise of the company was chronicled in the Harvard University Business School case called StarMedia: Launching a Latin American Revolution. StarMedia’s market capitalization reached $3.8 billion dollars and is today France Telecom‘s market leading Internet operation in the Spanish-speaking world.
Prior to founding StarMedia Network, Espuelas was the Managing Director of Marketing Communications for AT&T Latin America and the Caribbean where he was responsible for conceiving and launching AT&T’s first online service in Latin America. Before AT&T, Espuelas held various senior positions at Ogilvy & Mather in both the United States and Latin America. Espuelas also held account management positions at other WPP advertising agencies in New York. He is the author of the auto-biographical book Life in Action, published by Penguin in 2004.
Espuelas has also been active in community development. Espuelas co-founded and was Chairman of the StarMedia Foundation, which, with an alliance with the Inter-American Development Bank, helped fund and built over 150 technology schools in the poorest neighborhoods of Brazil, Colombia and Uruguay. He has also served on the corporate board of The Educational Broadcasting Corporation (the owner of PBS flagship Thirteen and Channel 21 in New York), as well as on the Board of Trustees of Connecticut College. In 2009, Espuelas was elected to the Board of Directors of Parent Revolution, a non-profit, public schools advocacy group working to drive education reform across the nation.
Espuelas received a B.A. in History with Distinction from Connecticut College.