Missouri notable latinos
Bommarito, Dinorah (1936-). Born in Santurce, Puerto Rico, Bommarito, a prominent Latina community activist, came to St. Louis in July 1960, after marrying Joe Bommarito, a veteran. In the 1960s Bommarito worked with numerous Latino organizations and the St. Margaret of Scotland Church as a translator for Cuban refugee families, helping them adjust to their new environment. Bommarito has earned several degrees and worked at various universities in the St. Louis area. Currently, she works at St. Louis Community College. As a community leader, Bommarito serves on numerous boards and committees for several Latino organizations, including the HLG, Older Women’s League, and the Bellas Artes Multicultural Center and Art Gallery. For 6 years, Bommarito has been a St. Louis’s Hispanic Leaders’ delegate. In that capacity, she was selected to visit Missouri representatives while they were in session in Jefferson City, Missouri.
Cepeda, Orlando (1937-). Baseball player Orlando Cepeda’s conflicts with the Giants’ management, in San Francisco, sent him to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1966. Known as Cha-Cha because of his love for salsa, Orlando Cepeda led the Cardinals to the World Series championship in 1967.
Miranda-Yuen, Celia (1946-). Businesswoman Yuen-Miranda migrated to Missouri from Brazil. Miranda-Yuen earned an undergraduate degree in economics from the Catholic University in Brazil in 1988, and a master’s degree in finance from the Business Management University in Brazil in 1990. In St. Louis, Miranda-Yuen earned a master’s in business administration from Webster University in May 2001. Miranda-Yuen has recently established Bellas Artes a not-for-profit arts and events gallery and cultural center celebrating Latino heritage of which she is the director.
Pinela, Gilberto (1964-). From San Juan, Puerto Rico, to New York City, media figure Pinela has traveled a long, and ultimately fulfilling, road to St. Louis. As the founder and president of Pinela Communications, he has been working in conjunction with UPN 46 to present a block of programming aimed at the Latino market. In the fall of
2004 Pinela produced and hosted a Spanish-language variety television program, Enterate, for UPN. Pinela has also hosted the first Spanish-language televised variety show in Missouri, Ahora San Luis, since 2001.
Desarden, Arnette (1974-). Born in Puerto Rico, Desarden is a prominent Latina activist in the St. Louis area. Desarden earned her bachelor’s in communication from Universidad Del Sagrado Corazon, San Juan, Puerto Rico, in 1997. After moving to Missouri, Desarden earned a bachelor’s in industrial engineering from the University of Missouri at Columbia in 2003. She is working on her MBA at Lindenwood University. Aside from her civil involvement, she is the founder and past president of the St. Louis chapter of the Gateway Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers.