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A non-partisan, non-profit organization 501(c)(3) based in Washington, DC that invests in the orange economy by supporting the arts, education, and entrepreneurship  to catalyze economic development and stimulate a sustainable economic development.

Who we are

about

Friends of Puerto Rico is the bridge between educational and cultural communities in Puerto Rico and its diaspora.

our mission and vision

We invest in communities to foster economic sustainability and promote self-sufficiency through art, cultural and educational exchanges.

our team

Board of Directors
Mrs. Angelique Sina
Co-Founder & Executive Director

Angelique Sina is a Global Relationship Manager at the World Bank Group. In 2016, she was appointed by Mayor of Washington, DC to serve as Commissioner for the Latino Community.
Born in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, Angelique has worked predominantly in the government relations and financial development sector. She was selected as a "Change maker" at the White House United State of Women and was a 2017 30 under 30 Forbes nominee. She has been awarded the Young Leadership Award at The Washington Center and the Redefining Leadership Award from Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement.
As a passionate advocate for women’s business success she launched a Puerto Rican Women Leadership series in Washington, DC. Angelique is the founder of two national nonprofit organizations: The Latina Impact Fund and Friends of Puerto Rico where develops the next generation of leaders through education programs, philanthropy and Angel investing.
Angelique has also been a board member of various community organizations, including Latinas in Business, Mujeres de HACE Alumnae, Prospanica and Art Museum of the Americas. She is a native of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico where she completed her Bachelors in Business and an alumnae from Johns Hopkins University.

Mr. Javier Llano
Board Member, Washington, DC

Javier Llano is an active member of the Puerto Rican Diaspora who has lived in New York City and Washington, DC for the last twenty years. He has worked on community development projects to empower Hipanic communities. During his years in New York, Mr. Llano worked on projects such as building affordable housing, green public spaces, and increasing access to affordable healthcare services. He is a partner at the Oldaker Law Group, where he consults with clients on strategic and competitive issues to optimize effectiveness of their relationships and advocacy programs to create marketplace advantage.  Mr. Llano is adept in creating strategic alliances to maximize growth to his clients. He has a B.A. in Political Science from University of Puerto Rico in Rio Piedras and an M.P.A. from  New York University. Mr. Llano, a native of El Barrio Daguao, was born in Fajardo, Puerto Rico and currently resides in Washington D.C.

Carla Amundaray
Member, Board of Directors - Washington, DC

Carla Amundaray is a government relations consultant and a firm believer of the importance of giving back to the community. Her previous philanthropic engagements include founding the George Washington University’s St. Jude Children’s Hospital Chapter. She has also been a volunteer fundraising for “Hospital Auxilio Mutuo’s Centro de Cancer” and the Taco Maker Foundation in Puerto Rico. As an Assistant Vice President at Sphere Consulting, she manages a portfolio of international clients, as well as those in the financial services and aerospace sectors. Her specialties include crisis communications, government and media relations, and political analysis. Prior to joining Sphere, Carla worked at the law and lobbying firm Husch Blackwell and with the Administration of Governor Luis Fortuño. She is from San Juan, Puerto Rico and a graduate of the George Washington University’s School of Media and Public Affairs from which she holds a BA in Political Communication.

Cristal Brun
Member, Board of Directors - Miami, Florida

Cristal Brun is a Senior Director with Alvarez & Marsal Disputes and Investigations in Washington D.C. She brings more than 14 years of experience in accounting, business, and litigation consulting for publicly-traded, closely-held, and public sector entities. She specializes in providing expert witness and consulting services related to economic damages, fraud investigations, and business valuations. Ms. Brun recently worked in Puerto Rico assessing different governmental agencies’ operational efficiency and financial performance. Specifically, Ms. Brun assessed the operations of multiple public hospitals, reviewed federal funding, and identified areas to reduce costs and increase revenues within the Department of Health. Ms. Brun worked with the Puerto Rico Department of Education to identify improvement areas within the public school system. Ms. Brun also led a project with the Department of Education in Puerto Rico that exceeded $2.1 billion dollars, including the revamp of 1,000 public schools and improved operational efficiency. She earned an M.B.A. and a B.S. in Finance from Penn State University. She has served in the Board of Directors of the DC Rape Crisis Center and the Smeal Business Club in Washington DC.

Ms. Brun is passionate about giving back to her community, particularly the Puerto Rican and Latino community, and helping fellow women in business. She loves music, volleyball, and is native from San Juan, Puerto Rio.

Pili Montilla
Member, Board of Directors - Los Angeles, California

EMMY award winning TV host, producer, content creator, and taste maker, Pili Montilla, has made a name for herself as the "go to" host in the bilingual entertainment world. Always immersed in the world of music, fashion, arts and travel Pili has built a solid reputation as an entertainer. Pili created, produces and hosts the EMMY winning music show “Té Para Tres con Pili Montilla” where she spends a day in the life of Latin musicians as they share their stories and music in an intimate and real manner, giving her audience an inside look at the lives of these talented musicians. Simultaneously, Pili works as a TV host for several networks in both the Hispanic and general markets, as a live host for different events and brands, and as an influencer and content creator for an array of clients. Prior to starring in her own show, Pili was making a name for herself as a TV host and entertainment reporter across the US Hispanic and Puerto Rican markets.

Jack Hirsbrunner, Ph.D
Member, Board of Directors - Arlington, Virginia

Jack Hirsbrunner, Ph.D., is the Chairman of the Board and Founder of Synectics for Management Decisions, Inc. He is chiefly involved in the development of Synectics' business policy and strategy. Dr. Hirsbrunner has more than 30 years of experience in management consulting in the fields of economic analysis, business economics, finance, manpower programs, and human resources management. He earned both a Ph.D. in Business Administration and an M.A. in Business Economics from Columbia University in New York City; earlier in life, he earned a Ph.D. and an M.A. in Economics from the University of Buenos Aires. Dr. Hirsbrunner is an artist and patron of the arts, and a member of Puerto Rico is the Answer (PRANS).

Pravesh Saraff
Member, Board of Directors - Washington, DC

Pravesh Saraff is a business owner and philanthropist in the Washington, DC metro area. He is the Managing Director of a Liquor Enterprise and under his umbrella he has: Angel's Share, Barmy Liquors and P Street Wines. These two stores specialize in offering white glove service to Washington's elite. The Saraff family is very active with different causes within the community including the Boys and Girls Club. Some of his philanthropic efforts include: Angels of the Fallenborn. Prav was raised in Nepal but his family originates from India. He currently resides in Fairfax, Virginia.

what we do

The Orange Economy: Arts, Education & Entrepreneurship

Friends of Puerto Rico sees a synergy in the three pillars of arts, education, and entrepreneurship, which are all essential for long-term economic and cultural development of Puerto Rico and the greater Caribbean. We measure  the impact of our success by using metrics and indicators related to job creation and community impact.

Education

From San Juan to Humacao to Vieques, a variety of foundations and charities directly support educational and training endeavors that advance their communities. Friends of Puerto Rico seeks to improve education by financially supporting educators and organizations that create job opportunities and stimulate economic development.

The Arts

From the Museo de Arte de Ponce to the Casal Festivals and many world renowned artists, Puerto Rico has long been recognized as a cultural leader and cultural incubator in the Caribbean. Friends of Puerto Rico seeks to enhance this tradition by financially supporting artists and cultural organizations that create job opportunities and further catalyze economic development on the island.

Entrepreneurship

From San Juan to Rincón, Puerto Rico is partnering with bright and ambitious entrepreneurs who require additional support at the proof of concept stage to scale their enterprises. Friends of Puerto Rico seeks to support entrepreneurship by funding individual entrepreneurs and organizations that strengthen the communities.

How We Do It

FPR provides direct financial support to nonprofits that have proven to be efficient and effective, which facilitates  high-impact donations in the region. Our network of donors are business leaders from the Puerto Rican community, as well as the many friends of Puerto Rico in the Washington Metropolitan Area and beyond.

Organizations and donors involved in the Friends of Puerto Rico events become part of our network, creating opportunities for partnership and collaboration across non-profits and donors looking to maximize the impact of their work.

Our annual fundraising event, “Building the Future of Puerto Rico,” brings together our donors and the non-profit organizations that we have chosen to support that year. More information about our second annual event, held in June 2016, can be found here.

Who We have supported

Since 2015, FPR has supported organizations in Puerto Rico that carry the mission of the orange economy.

Kinesis Foundation (2016)

The foundation helps Puerto Rican youth to overcome social boundaries, fulfilling their potential to achieve excellence at the highest academic levels. Kinesis fuels Puerto Rico’s social and economic transformation through providing college scholarships, bright start college access counseling, and high school counselor college access education.

Alcanzando el Exito (2016)

Reach for Success provides Viequense youth and their families with needed resources and opportunities to achieve educational, vocational, and economic success through after-school programs focusing on career and vocational guidance, parental support, drug and alcohol health awareness, academic counseling, mentoring, and cultural awareness. The June 2016 Event also honored artist Antonio Martorell, known for his artwork at the Whitney Museum, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Museo del Barrio in New York, and the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.

Learn More

Museo de Arte de Ponce (2015)

Home to Sir Frederic Leighton’s iconic painting “Flaming June.” Friends of Puerto Rico hosted a fundraising reception for the Ponce Museum of Art to commemorate the reunion of the three paintings of the Three Magi by the Flemish master, Peter Paul Rubens. The famous artwork of King Gaspar travelled from the Museum of Art in Ponce to the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC for a special exhibition that took place from March 17–July 5, 2015. Until this time, the three paintings had not been exhibited together for over a century. To celebrate this historic event, a reception was hosted at Washington, DC’s Burberry store to give national recognition to the Museo de Arte de Ponce.  The reception raised $20,000 for the museum renovations and provided access to low-income children from “el “barrio”, La Cantera in Ponce.