June 13, 2024
6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Above the Heights
500 W 181st Street
New York, NY 10033

We cordially invite you to NMIC’s “Catalyzing Change: 45 Years of Community Impact” benefit event on Thursday, June 13, 2024, at Above the Heights. This year, we are celebrating 45 years of sustained advocacy, empowering individuals and families, and creating positive transformations. We are also excited to celebrate the innovative partnerships that make this work possible. 

The event will begin at 6:00 PM with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, and will culminate with an exciting award ceremony. We hope to see you there!


Anny Ruiz

In the bustling streets of New York City, Anny Ruiz’s journey began over two decades ago, driven by a fervent ambition to make a significant impact and carve out a lasting legacy.

Raised in Daule, Ecuador’s renowned rice capital, Anny’s path took an unexpected turn when she ventured into the world of journalism. “I always had this feeling that I wanted to do something big, something that mattered,” she reminisces.

Her journey into journalism wasn’t straightforward. After a brief stint in the performing arts, Anny found herself drawn to the power of storytelling. “Observation has always been my strong suit,” she notes, “and journalism felt like the perfect outlet to channel that.”

During her final year at Lehman College, Anny seized an opportunity at a prestigious television network. Despite her limited experience, she quickly proved her mettle and cemented her place in the field. “It was exhilarating,” she admits, “to see my dreams unfold right before my eyes.”

Now a seasoned journalist, Anny reflects on her humble beginnings with a sense of pride. “Who would’ve thought that the girl from that little town, would find herself making waves in the heart of New York City?” she muses.

Family remains at the core of Anny’s journey. Her husband Juan and their three children—Isabel, Emiliano, and Ammy—serve as her constant source of inspiration. “They’re my driving force,” she declares, “pushing me to strive for excellence every single day.”

Anny’s passion for storytelling extends beyond the headlines. Through her work, she seeks to amplify the voices of marginalized communities, shedding light on their struggles and triumphs. “It’s about giving a voice to the voiceless,” she explains, “and advocating for those who need it most.”

Today, Anny Ruiz stands as a beacon of inspiration in the world of journalism. As a valued member of the NY1 Noticias team, she continues to make waves, her unwavering dedication leaving an indelible mark on the industry. “It’s not just about reporting the news,” she concludes, “it’s about making a difference for my people, my community.”

Igniting Equity Award

Hispanic Federation (HF)

Hispanic Federation serves as a national model for Latino social, political, and economic empowerment. With a strong presence in New York, Florida, North Carolina, Puerto Rico, and other key states throughout the U.S., HF works to uplift millions of Hispanic children, youth, and families across the country. In addition, our Washington, DC office gives HF a true national advocacy presence. HF works locally, state-wide, and nationally to strengthen Latino nonprofits, promote public policy advocacy, and bring to scale a portfolio of innovative community programs.

Frankie Miranda is the first openly gay president and CEO of the Hispanic Federation (H.F.), the nation’s premier Latino non-profit membership organization. Since joining H.F. in 1998, he has played a key role in expanding H.F.’s member network to include hundreds of community-based organizations that operate across the U.S. while also establishing critical programs that empower hundreds of thousands of Latinos. He holds a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Puerto Rico and an M.A. in Performance Studies from New York University. Frankie lives in Queens with his husband Ricardo and cat Valentina.  

Legacy Award

Rafael A. Lantigua, MD

Rafael A. Lantigua, MD, is the Director, Office of Community Service Programs; Associate Dean for Community Service; and Professor of Medicine, Columbia University Irving Medical Center Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. He received his medical degree from the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo (Autonomous University of Santo Domingo) in 1972. A native of the Dominican Republic, Dr. Lantigua migrated to New York City to follow his mother’s footsteps.  He completed his residency in internal medicine at Lincoln Hospital, where he also served as a chief resident. After completing an endocrinology fellowship at the Rochester University School of Medicine in 1980, he returned to New York City with an appointment as Assistant Professor of Medicine at the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University and Assistant Attending at NewYorkPresbyterian Hospital. 

He has moved up the ranks of the University to become Professor of Medicine in 1994, and for over two decades, he served as the Associate Director of the Division of General Medicine at the Department of Medicine and the Medical Director of Associate in Internal Medicine at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. He is a member of the Admissions Committee of Columbia University Irving Medical School and member of the Internal Medicine Residency Committee. For more than two decades, he represented Columbia University at the American Medical Association (AMA) Section on Medical School and was elected member of the Executive Committee in 2010. In August of 2011, Dr. Lantigua was appointed Dean’s Advisor for Community Health at Columbia University Medical Center. He was appointed Associate Dean for Community Service in the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons in 2018. In 2019, he became the Director of the Office of Community Service Programs. 

Dr. Lantigua has been actively involved in research on issues that affect the quality of life of minority populations. He served as a co-investigator in a New York State Department of Health Program to promote awareness and education of cardio-vascular disease in the minority community. He also served as the principal investigator in the National Institute of Aging Study of issues of quality of life affecting the minority elderly. From 1998-2008, he served as Director of the Columbia Center for Active Life of Minority Elders, a Resource Center for Minority Aging Research sponsored by the National Institute of Aging, and Co-Investigator in a study of the genetics of Alzheimer’s disease in Latino families. Dr. Lantigua served as Deputy Director of the Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and the Aging Brain, Columbia University. Dr. Lantigua has published more than 100 medical articles in peer-reviewed journals. A frequent speaker on health topics affecting minorities, he has been co-chair of several major symposiums dealing with Hispanics’ health in New York City. 

Dr. Lantigua was Co-founder and former Chairperson of both the Board of Alianza Dominicana, Inc. and the Board of the Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrants Rights.  He has served on multiple boards of non-profit organizations, such as the Puerto Rican Legal Defense Fund, Puerto Rican/Hispanic Institute for the Elderly, the Latino Commission on AIDS, National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, and ARC Fort Washington Senior Center. Along with other young physicians, he helped to found the National Hispanic Medical Association in December 1993. 

On numerous occasions, Dr. Lantigua served on the Board of Directors of the Dominican Medical Society and was the president of The Society in 1996.  From 1988 to 1997, he served as a member of the New York State Board of Professional Medical Conduct. 

He also served as a member of the Board of the Hispanic PAC U.S.A. and a member of the Board of Directors and treasurer of the Hispanic Education and Legal Fund. From 1998 to 2002, Dr. Lantigua was a member of the Board of Directors of the Northern Manhattan Empowerment Zone. In 2005, he was appointed to the prestigious post of member of the Board of Scientific Counselors of the National Institute on Aging (NIA), a branch of the National Institute of Health (NIH).  He has also served as a member of the Greater New York Hospital Association Advisory Task Force on Diversity in Health Care Leadership. Since 2006, he has served Co-Director of the Community Engagement Resource Core of the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research at Columbia University. In 2009, Dr. Lantigua was honored by the Legal Aid Society for his “pro bono” work in front of Federal Court, testifying as a health expert to support Latino immigrants facing deportation. 

He was distinguished as a Grand Marshall of the Dominican Parade in 1983 and has been given an honorary professor degree from the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo and from the Universidad Technologica de Santiago, Dominican Republic. In 1998, he was conferred a Doctor Honoris Causa degree in Social Medicine by Spanish University of America. The same year, he received the “Arnold Gold Award” in Humanism at Columbia University Medical School and in 2010 the Ewig Clinical Scholar Award (Department of Medicine, Columbia University) in recognition of outstanding quality in teaching. Dr. Lantigua has received the Key of the City of Miami and he has received commendations from the Bronx, Queens, and Manhattan Borough Presidents, the Office of the Mayor of Newark, New Jersey, U.S. Congress, among others. He was the first recipient of the Premio Internacional al Emigrante Dominicano Sr. Oscar De La Renta. Most recently, Dr. Lantigua was honored by Dominican Republic President Luis Abinader and the Mayor of Santo Domingo Este with his bust placed in the Boulevard del Dominicano en el Exterior. 

Igniting Change Award

Unidad Comunal

NMIC’s Community Organizing efforts have brought together tenant associations and community advocates from Upper Manhattan to form an independent organization, Unidad Comunal. This volunteer-led grassroots organization focuses on combating gentrification and addressing the lack of affordable and safe housing in the area, as well as advocating for better-funded essential services for Latine New Yorkers.

Community Ticket | $250

One admission

Corporate Ticket | $500
Includes listing in event journal

All ads are full color and due on May 15, 2024. 

Full-Page Digital Ad w/ Bleed| $1,000
Full Page Trim – 8.75″ x 11.25″

HalfPage Digital Ad | $500
Half Page -7.75″ x 4.75″


Quarter-Page Digital Ad | $250

Quarter Page – 3.75″ x 4.75″

Your gift is tax-deductible.


Thank You to Our Sponsors

NMIC Turns 45
NMIC celebrates its 45th anniversary in 2024. Over the past four decades, we have been dedicated to enhancing the well-being of our community and have expanded our free services to focus on six core areas: housing, immigration, benefits & finance, health, education & career, and holistic services. 

Since our inception, community organizing has been a foundational pillar of our approach. It’s the backbone of our advocacy efforts, enabling us to remain agile and responsive to the evolving needs of our communities. From advocating for critical budget allocations to championing legislative priorities, we’re committed to being at the forefront of change. Each year, NMIC serves over 14,000 residents, leaving a lasting impact on the lives of 32,000 individuals across Northern Manhattan and adjacent Bronx neighborhoods. But our work is far from over. With your partnership, we’re poised to continue driving positive, transformative change for years to come. Join us as we work towards a brighter, more equitable future for all.
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