NATHALIE RAYES, who serves as the U.S. national public relations director of Grupo Salinas, was selected to receive the Santa Monica College Foundation’s 2012 Distinguished Alumni Recognition Award for Outstanding Professional and Community Service Achievement.

NATHALIE RAYES, who serves as the U.S. national public relations director of Grupo Salinas, was selected to receive the Santa Monica College Foundation’s 2012 Distinguished Alumni Recognition Award for Outstanding Professional and Community Service Achievement.

Nathalie Rayes has been honored by the Santa Monica College Foundation with its 2012 Distinguished Alumni Recognition Award for Outstanding Professional and Community Service Achievement.
Rayes, who graduated with honors from Santa Monica College in 1994, was recognized during commencement June 11 at SMC’s Corsair Field.
The Boston resident works in the corporate arena but has also been active in municipal and national government, serving in such roles as adviser to President Obama.
Rayes currently serves as the U.S. national public relations director of Grupo Salinas, a Mexican conglomerate with $5 billion in annual sales and 60,000 employees in Mexico, the United States, and Central and South America. She is also the executive director of Grupo Salinas’ philanthropic arm in the United States – Fundación Azteca America.
In these roles, she has led numerous national campaigns that seek to improve the quality of life of Latinos by partnering with existing local and international governments, scholars, universities and non-profits to empower, create awareness and motivate change on social and immigration issues, according to the SMC Foundation.
At SMC, Rayes earned an Associate of Arts degree in sociology. She then transferred to UCLA where she received a bachelor of arts degree in sociology cum laude and a master’s in public policy with concentrations in international relations and education.
After leaving college, she was appointed as former Los Angeles Mayor James K. Hahn’s deputy chief of staff before the age of 30.
Rayes additionally serves on many boards including the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute Advisory Board, Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute Advisory Council, and U.S.-Mexico Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.
As an SMC alumna, she has offered internship opportunities for SMC students at the local Azteca station in Los Angeles, and she is seeking ways to expand study abroad opportunities in Mexico for the college’s students, according to the foundation.

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