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The Rise of the Latino Entrepreneur In a World of Sharks

Is it crazy to try to cultivate a restaurant named LIBERTAD by night and work as a sales engineer by day?

By Stephanie Vazquez-Torres
Published on LatinoLA: April 2, 2015

The Rise of the Latino Entrepreneur In a World of Sharks

I grew up in the barrio of Hazard St in East Los Angeles in the 80's. I struggled to learn English since Spanish was my first language. I am the daughter of 2 poverty level parents who immigrated here from Mexico in the early 70's to try to "make a better living" here in the states. I challenged myself to not let my ethnicity stop me from bettering myself. Years later, I have earned two degrees. A B.A in Business Administration and a M.B.A in Geographic Information Systems. Here is my story.

I am 27 and stating a venture with my husband who I met during my last year of my MBA program. We both have different passions, but have managed to collide them as one. On my off time, I have a passion for Decor. I worked for close to 9 years in a manufacturing company that dedicates itself to producing custom cabinetry and furniture pieces. In those years, I learned to combine colors, patterns, and textures together to create pieces that were magnificent.

Many say I have an "eye" for interior designing. That I am a very creative designer. I do not call myself none of those things. I am simply a woman who has a knack for this type of things. I have build my portfolio over time with transforming empty walls and rooms into jaw-dropping presentations for clients and friends. It is a passion of mine.

On the other note, my husband has a passion for food. He lives and breathes food, from the tiny seed to the end product he will serve on your plate. But please do not call him a chef, as he states, he is simply a man who has a passion for food. With both of our passions combined together, we gave birth to our restaurant which we call LIBERTAD.

LIBERTAD is a full service restaurant based out of our University Hills home in Los Angeles. We serve on our patios, thus, giving you an embracig view of the hills of North East Los Angeles. We focus on plating tapas-style food. While you dine and over look the views, we did not soley just create this place for that reason, you see, we both struggled growing up and we saw things some kids should never see. Our first and foremost priority is to give back to our community.

LIBERTAD devotes opportunities by cultivating the philosophy of food and foundations of cooking to underprivileged individuals, who struggle to rise through adversity. We teach them an alternative to life instead of the current lifestyle they live. We give them hope and self confidence to rise against and do better for themselves and their future.

My husband and I are very proud of our accomplishments and where we are in life now, but this was not handed to us, this was brought with hard work and devotion.

So I ask of my Hispanic, Latino, and every other community that believes that we should help encourage our Raza to rise to better things, to give each other the helping hand when we think there is nothing left, come and support our cause. We encourage you to come to our exclusive dinners and give back to those who are underprivileged and help them believe that there is a light at the end of the dark tunnel.

Please check out our website:

About Stephanie Vazquez-Torres:
Here is my story of my uprising in a hectic world.
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