MIAMI- April 8, 2016 – NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises and Hispanicize 2016, the largest annual event for Latino trendsetters and newsmakers in journalism, blogging, marketing, entertainment and tech entrepreneurship, today announced Pope Francis as the recipient of the first-ever “Telemundo Innovation Award.” The award was conceived by Telemundo to honor an individual innovator whose work has explored new trends, showcased pioneering spirit and greatly impacted society. The announcement was made in partnership with the Hispanicize 2016 advisory board at the 2nd annual Tecla Awards last night, from the ICON in Miami Beach, FL.

For the inaugural award, Pope Francis was selected for his innovative work with the Scholas Ocurrentes Foundation, connecting technology with arts and sports programs in order to promote social integration, especially in poorer communities. Executives from Telemundo and Hispanicize will present Pope Francis with the award in person at the Scholas Occurrentes Interreligious Peace Soccer Match in May.

“As the first pope to embrace social media, His Holiness has been able to connect with younger generations and become one of the most influential and innovative religious leaders of our time,” said, Borja Perez, Senior Vice President, Digital & Social Media, NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises. “It is an honor for us to celebrate Pope Francis for his innovative approach to redefining religion in a social and digital world.”

“Pope Francis has redefined the Catholic faith through a hands-on, personal, social touch that truly embodies what the word innovator means,” said Hispanicize founder Manny Ruiz, “His understanding of the vast significance of social media in today’s landscape is exactly what we strive for here at Hispanicize. It’s going to be a true honor to meet him in Rome to present this special award.”

The Tecla Awards recognize excellence in the digital multicultural space, showcasing increasingly sophisticated and impressive work achieved by Latinos ranging from bloggers, influencers, journalists, brands and agencies among others. The event is part of Hispanicize, and was named after the Spanish-language word for an individual key on a keyboard. The second annual event features 26 categories focused on innovators, creators and brands as well as the agencies and media companies fostering Latino content creation.  


About NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises:

NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises encompasses TELEMUNDO, a Spanish-language television network reaching 94% of Hispanic TV households and featuring original scripted and non-scripted productions, theatrical motion pictures, specials, news and first-class sports events; Telemundo Studios, the leading producer of original Spanish-language primetime content in the U.S.; the Telemundo Station Group, reaching U.S. Hispanic viewers in 210 markets, through its 17 owned stations and 52 broadcast and MVPD affiliates in the US and Puerto Rico; NBC UNIVERSO, a modern general entertainment cable channel for Latinos, offering a thrilling mix of exclusive premium sports, signature series, blockbuster movies, music, must-see live events and strategic acquisitions, on TV, online and mobile devices; Telemundo International, the second largest distributor of Spanish-language content in the world, reaching more than 120 countries in over 40 languages; and its Digital Media unit, which creates and distributes original content across digital and emerging platforms including mobile devices, apps, www.telemundo.com and www.nbcuniverso.com, and operates Fluency Productions, the company’s multi-format, multi-platform production studio. NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises is a division of NBCUniversal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies. NBCUniversal is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation.

About Hispanicize 2016:

Now in its seventh year, Hispanicize 2016 Week (www.HispanicizeEvent.com) (#Hispz16) is the iconic, largest annual event for Latino trendsetters and newsmakers in digital content creation, journalism, marketing, entertainment and tech entrepreneurship.

Hispanicize 2016 is expected to gather more than 3,000 of the nation’s most influential Latino professionals from the industries of digital content creation, journalism, music, marketing, film and business over five days. The event will take place in downtown Miami’s InterContinental hotel, April 4-8, 2016.

The Hispanicize event is a launch pad for creative endeavors, new products, technologies, marketing campaigns, films, books and more targeting Latinos in the U.S. and/or Puerto Rico.

The Hispanicize event can be found on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Hispanicize, Instagram (@HispanicizeEvent), Twitter and Periscope (@Hispanicize).

Press Contacts:

Elizabeth Vazquez

Sheena Eustice for Telemundo