At the 2015 Animus Summit, Gabriel Hernández moderates the panel consisting of Sandrysabel Ortíz, Cristina Villalón & Caroline López-Beauchamp, as they discuss the benefits taking a Puerto Rico based business global.
Gabriel Hernández co-founded BDO Puerto Rico 15 years ago and now heads the firm’s tax division. He is an expert at providing tax consulting services and negotiating tax exemption packages under P.R.’s tax incentive laws. Prior to BDO, Gabriel worked at PwC, Arthur Andersen and Ernst & Young. Recently, he joined efforts to promote economic development on the island by forming the action tank Puerto Rico is the Answer and the MIT Regional Entrepreneurship Acceleration Program. Gabriel supports Sapientis, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving P.R.’s public education.
Sandrysabel Ortiz started Heel Condoms at 23 years old. She launched a social responsibility pilot project using the Women’s Correctional Facility in Puerto Rico to manufacture the product and make it available to customers worldwide. Sandrysabel previously worked as an investment banking intern for Goldman Sachs and Citigroup in New York and later for Operating Partners, a local investment firm. Among her awards are Caribbean Business’ “40 under 40” and Doral Bank’s “Successful Businesswoman.”
Cristina Villalón recently received a “Star on the Rise” award by Design Center of the Americas for being a top interior designer in Florida. Her firm, Álvarez-Díaz & Villalón, has offices in San Juan and Miami and projects in the U.S., Latin America and the Middle East. Its work has received numerous accolades such as The Best of Houzz 2014 and The Best of Residential 2013. In 2012, Cristina merged her design company, Villalón Interiors, with her husband’s, forming AD&V.
Caroline López is a Certified Public Accountant and attorney currently in public service as Under Secretary of the Department of Economic Development and Commerce of Puerto Rico. As part of her duties, Caroline is engaged in promoting Puerto Rico as a top investment and business destination. Her hands-on personality and technical skills have been a fundamental factor in closing key projects that have impacted positively the Island’s economic growth.
She transitioned from her job as a tax attorney in a major local law firm to the public sector in 2013 when she was named legal advisor in fiscal and energy matters for the President of the Senate. Caroline is committed to service the community by further strengthening women’s empowerment and leadership.