Urban League chief to speak at St. John Fisher graduation

The outgoing president and CEO of the Urban League of Rochester, William G. Clark, will be the commencement speaker at St. John Fisher College during graduation ceremonies May 11.

Clark is a 1978 graduate of Fisher, having earned a bachelor’s degree in management there. He also holds an MBA with a concentration in accounting from Rochester Institute of Technology. At the commencement exercises, he will receive an honorary doctorate of humane letters from the college.

William G. Clark
William G. Clark

Two other veterans of Rochester human services organizations will be honored at the graduation as well – the recently retired Hilda Rosario-Escher, past president and chief executive officer of Ibero American Action League, and A. Dirk Hightower, executive director of the Children’s Institute. They will receive President’s Medals.

“We are so pleased to honor Bill, Hilda, and Dirk – these community champions – for their strong leadership in our community, the commitment they have demonstrated in their respective roles, and the broad impact of their work,” said Fisher President Gerard J. Rooney. “We know our graduates will see in them people they would like to emulate in their lives after Fisher.”

Clark has served in several capacities – sometimes more than one at the same time — during his 37 years at the Urban League. He was appointed president and CEO in 1994.

Focusing on education, economic parity, housing and employment for African-Americans, Latinos, and disadvantaged residents, Urban League provides some 30 programs for youth, families, and adults.

Details of the graduation ceremonies are on the college’s website.

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Ibero-American Action League names new leader

Angelica Perez-Delgado, an executive at the Villa of Hope, has been named president and CEO of the Ibero-American Action League.

Perez-Delgado replaces longtime CEO Hilda Rosario Escher.

Angelica Perez-Delgado. Photo supplied by Ibero-American Action League
Angelica Perez-Delgado (Photo courtesy Ibero-American Action League)

“While Hilda is leaving behind a great legacy and we are sad to see her leave, the board of directors is very excited about Ibero’s future and having a leader like Angelica to lead us in this new chapter for the organization,” said the board chairman, Miguel Velazquez.

Perez-Delgado also was a member of the Ibero board. In her job at chief administrative officer and compliance officer at Villa of Hope, her responsibilities also included organizational development, human resources, informational technology, facility operations and strategic initiatives.

“I am grateful to the board and humbled for the opportunity to lead Ibero. I am passionate and deeply connected to our mission.” Perez-Delgado said.  “I am excited about the opportunity to join talented, passionate and committed staff in leading Ibero into the future.”

Perez-Delgado holds a master’s degree in health administration from Roberts Wesleyan College and a bachelor’s degree in community human services from Empire State College. The 50-year old Ibero-American Action League is a dual-language human services agency serving people of all ethnic backgrounds.


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City, county partner with Ibero for Latino Summit

Hilda Rosario Escher
Hilda Rosario Escher

The Ibero American Action League Inc. will partner with the County of Monroe and the City of Rochester on the 2018 Upstate Latino Summit.

The event will be held Oct. 17 at the Joseph A. Floreano Rochester Riverside Convention Center and will feature influential Latino experts from cities across the state. The event’s premiere sponsor is Vision Automotive Group.

Workshops will include information on education, health and human services, economic development and cultural competence.

“This year’s Upstate Latino Summit also coincides with Ibero’s 50-year anniversary,” said Ibero President and CEO Hilda Rosario Escher. “Our expertise with the Latino community is not only unique, it’s proven by the results our programs deliver year after year, so it’s critical for local organizations and businesses to learn the necessary skills to deliver their own services successfully.”

Ibero requested that the city and county join the organization as co-sponsors of the event, given their past support.

“Both the city and county offer a number of programs and initiatives that target the Latino community,” Rosario Escher said. “That is something Ibero looks for when seeking out partners for our own initiatives.”

Panelists and moderators from Albany, Buffalo, Syracuse and Rochester will lead workshop discussions, followed by a 50th Anniversary Recognition Luncheon, which will recognize individuals who support Ibero’s mission and success of the Rochester community.

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Ibero leader Hilda Rosario Escher to retire

hilda-escher-photo-2017-1-237x300Hilda Rosario Escher will leave her post as president and CEO of the Ibero-American Action League Inc. at the end of this year.

“I have been at Ibero for most of my adult life. When I first moved to Rochester from Puerto Rico, I signed up for Ibero’s Bilingual Secretarial Training Program to learn English and stayed on at Ibero as an employee,” Escher said in a statement. “I could never have imagined that I would be so blessed to one day lead the agency that essentially gave me my start in Rochester.”

Escher was born and raised in Vega Baja, Puerto Rico. She arrived in the U.S. after earning her bachelor’s degree in sociology and education from the University of Puerto Rico in 1973. Among her seven older siblings, Escher was the only one to go to college.

“I had a lot of determination and always wanted something more,” Escher told the RBJ in a 2008 interview.

After signing up for Ibero’s English program, Escher was offered a job as coordinator of bilingual secretarial training for clients such as Eastman Kodak Co. and Bausch & Lomb Inc. She also served as Ibero’s director of day care services, director of foster care services and director of developmental disabilities.

She became Ibero’s CEO in 2005, when former President and CEO Julio Vazquez was named commissioner of the city’s department of community development by then-Mayor Robert Duffy.

Ibero was founded in 1968 with the mission of providing advocacy services for Monroe County’s growing Hispanic population. The dual-language human services agency has evolved to an agency that serves individuals and families of all ethnic backgrounds.

Escher, 67, plans to spend more time with family when she leaves her post in December.

“As I contemplated my decision to step down, I decided that 2018 was the right year to do it,” she said. “I know that I have done everything I can to lead the agency down a successful path, and I am confident in the ability of current and future staff to continue fulfilling our mission.”

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Follow Velvet Spicer on Twitter: @Velvet_Spicer