In 1979, a small group of active Hispanic business leaders met to discuss ways to create an organized Hispanic business voice in Southern Alameda County. The lack of Hispanic business voices on boards, commissions, and advisory committees attributed much to the concern that Hispanics were not involved in business and in city government decisions. This absence of Latino businesses in city government gave rise to the first Hispanic business organization – the “Mexican American Chamber of Commerce of Southern Alameda County”.
In 1986, this organization evolved into the “Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Alameda County (HCCAC)” to expand its Hispanic service area. This was a transitional period that led to many partnerships and collaborations. In 1987, the HCCAC President, Armando Morlos, was elected President to the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (CHCC). In this same year, the HCCAC won the bid to host the first 1987 State Convention in Oakland at the current Marriott Hotel.
These first ten years saw many changes for the HCCAC and those changes shaped the organizations image and leadership in Alameda County.
In 2003, the HCCAC established the Hispanic Business, Education and Training (HBET)Inc. a 501 (c ) (3) organization to provide services for economic and workforce development. These joint efforts are helping Latino businesses access corporate and government diversity programs. As a result, the Latino communities are benefiting.
In late 2003, the HCCAC jointly hosted several community and business leadership programs. First, for example, the Latina Business Conference, “Mujer a Mujer – Woman to Woman”, addressed the needs of growing numbers of Latina business owners. And second, the Educational Student Summit emerged as a signature program designed to encourage Latino students to stay in school and graduate from college.
In 2007, HBET and HCCAC established and re-organized to prepare infrastructure for the future. The purpose is to plan for the new emerging “Green” businesses and new bio-technology changes affecting the Latino’s.
Today, the HCCAC has received many Awards and recognitions for its accomplishments in its 30 years of service. HCCAC remains committed to serving the business, economic and social needs of the Hispanic business community. The HCCAC’s mission and vision serves as the path to follow in the years to come.