University of Tampa


The 2021 Latinos Unidos Scholarship fundraising event included the First Viva Tampa Virtual Run, and the Virtual Luncheon with Nationally Renowned Speaker Sylvia Acevedo, an engineer, rocket scientist, tech entrepreneur and former CEO for Girl Scout USA.

Latinos Unidos Virtual Run Logo

Viva Tampa Virtual Run

The First Mayor’s Hispanic Advisory Council Viva Tampa Virtual Run for the Latinos Unidos Fund was held from Friday, April 23 to Sunday, May 2. Participants ran in person with the Mayor's Hispanic Advisory on Friday, April 30th at 6:30 PM at Water Works Park, 1701 North Highland Ave., Tampa, FL. 33602.

Sylvia Acevedo Photo

Virtual Luncheon

The Mayor’s Hispanic Advisory Council Virtual Luncheon event was held on Wednesday May 5, 2021 at noon.

Nationally Renowned Speaker Sylvia Acevedo, who believes all children should have access to a postsecondary education to achieve their American dream, joined our efforts as the keynote speaker.

Sylvia Acevedo is an engineer, rocket scientist, tech entrepreneur, and Nationally Renowned Speaker. She began her career as a rocket scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where she created algorithms and analyzed data from Voyager 2’s spacecraft flyby of Jupiter and two of its moons, Io and Europa. She went on to work as an engineer and executive at Apple, Dell, Autodesk, and IBM.

Sylvia Acevedo was the CEO of Girl Scouts USA, coming full circle from her youth as a Girl Scout in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Through Girl Scouts, Sylvia discovered her passion for space, science, and math. Her interest in STEM subjects would lead her to a career as a rocket scientist, engineer, technology executive, and award-winning STEM entrepreneur.

Sylvia has helped girls become champions in STEM, the outdoors, entrepreneurship, and leadership. In May 2017, she directed the largest rollout of merit badges in nearly a decade. In total, 39 of the 47 new offerings are in STEM subjects, including weather-pattern analysis, space science, robotics, and cybersecurity. Twenty-three of the badges are currently available, while the other 24 will be rolled out in summer 2019.

A strong civic and education leader, Sylvia understands the role education plays in creating opportunities for children and developing the workforce of the future. She was one of the first Hispanic students, male or female, to earn a graduate engineering degree from Stanford University—an MS in industrial engineering—and she holds a bachelor of science degree with honors in industrial engineering from New Mexico State University.

Sylvia has been recognized widely for her accomplishments in business and education, and for her work to bring more girls into the STEM pipeline. In 2018 she was named one of Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business,” as well as “Cybersecurity Person of the Year” by Cybersecurity Ventures. Forbes named her as one of America’s Top 50 Women in Tech, and in 2019 InStyle magazine placed her at number seven on its list of “Women Who Are Changing the World.”

Sylvia is the author of Path to the Stars: My Journey from Girl Scout to Rocket Scientist, a memoir for middle school students that inspires readers to live the lives of their dreams.

Sponsorship Contacts:
Anthony Perez at (941) 962-4413



Updated: 08/20/2021