Stephanie Valdez Streaty
In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 – October 15), Cox is casting a spotlight on some of the employees who make up our rich and diverse company culture.
The Latinx community is made up of people from many ethnic groups with diverse histories, languages, countries of origin, and cultures. In this Q&A, Stephanie Valdez Streaty shares her thoughts on everything from Latinas in leadership roles to fond memories of large family gatherings.
How has your culture and upbringing influenced how you have lived your life? How has it also influenced how you show up every day for work?
My parents have been a guiding star for my life. They have instilled in me the importance of family, treating others with kindness and having a strong work ethic. Neither of my parents graduated from college, but they both stressed upon me the value of getting an education. The values they raised me with have remained true today in everything I do. I strive for excellence at work and hope that I can bring a smile to those I work with.
How does your Hispanic / Latina heritage play into your traditions, beliefs and lifestyle? How do you keep those traditions alive?
There is so much beauty and tradition in the diverse Latino community. I love my Mexican American family traditions! Central to everything is good food, fun and music. My favorite time of year is during the Christmas holiday. With my children, we have continued the practice of having a traditional Mexican feast for Christmas dinner. Nothing is better than homemade Mexican food!
What do you think is important for others at the company to know about your experience being Hispanic / Latina in corporate America and at Cox?
Throughout my career, I have usually been one of the few Latinas working at my level. Even today, I do not have many Latina colleagues to share stories with, mentor and support. I’m hopeful that this will change in the future. The pool of talented Latinas will continue to grow — with estimates that they will make up 25% of female population by 2050.
What do you think is the greatest need to move the Hispanic / Latino community forward – and how can others help?
Education! I know firsthand the power of education. I was the first one in my immediate family to earn a college degree and it opened many doors for me. Unfortunately, there are many barriers for Latinos getting access to quality education. I would ask others to learn more about nonprofit organizations that support Latino causes and get involved. Also, if you have the time, volunteer to mentor a young Latino student.