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This is me, Thomas

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From Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. This month celebrates the culture, history and accomplishments of Latinx and Hispanic people and their ancestors. The term Hispanic or Latinx refers to an individual's culture of origin – regardless of their race and includes Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central/ South American or other Latin and Spanish heritage.

To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, Thomas Lopez, one of the amazing members of our team shared his story.

Thomas Lopez

This is me, Thomas

At TCE, I am the Manager of Talent Acquisition, which includes managing the hiring activities across the organization. I love my job because I think of my team as the ‘welcoming committee’ at TCE – we get to be the first impression that new employees have of our amazing organization. Outside of work, I am married to my husband Spencer and I am a dad to my two daughters.

I also keep busy teaching part-time at the University of Houston-Downtown, running my own production company and serving as a board member of the Greater Houston LGBT Chamber of Commerce.

Celebrating culture

Hispanic Heritage Month is important to me because it is a celebration of culture and the richness and diversity within our community. There is so much to celebrate including different foods, music, dance and traditions. Recently, we had my mom and grandma over and we all danced a cumbia while music from Selena was playing. It was fun to pass along to my girls what my mom and grandma gave to me – the gift of dance, fun and pride in our culture!

Folks often ask how to support Hispanic and Latinx communities — I encourage everyone to try to learn something you may not have known. Have a coffee with a friend in the community, read a book, watch a documentary or listen to a podcast. Of course, as a small business owner myself, I’d encourage you to support a local Hispanic or Latinx-owned business.

Embracing your authentic self

Representation is important to me because as someone who did not always see myself reflected in media or in people I looked up to growing up, I know the impact it can have to see a role model in your community that you can relate to.

I tell my kids, ‘every day we see examples – so be the good kind.’ Embracing my authentic self as a professional and in my personal life can be an example to others that they are represented and can aspire to whatever they choose to be

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Thomas Lopez