Entrepreneurial Maverick ‘Iluminando la Comunidad’ series brought to you by ComEd

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - EducationBy: Ashmar Mandou

At the helm of the National Latino Education Institute (NLEI), a nationally accredited nonprofit organization, Executive Director Elba Aranda-Suh has been leading the organization since 1999.  Under her leadership, NLEI garnered awards for its creative education programs for the Latino community. 

Known for her entrepreneurial and vivacious spirit, Aranda-Suh is an accomplished professional with more than 15 years in leadership roles. In her years gaining experience, Aranda-Suh has worked effortlessly in bringing resources and opportunities that strengthen the Latino community.  Understanding the connection between education and employment, Aranda-Suh has devoted her career to serving her community pioneering models that allow underserved communities greater access to higher education. 

Aranda-Suh has served on several boards of directors and executive committees for several community-based organizations including: The Latino Council on the Media (LCOM), Illinois League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), and National LULAC Educational Center.  She has also been recognized by corporations such as Citibank, Pepsi-Cola, Lucent Technologies and the National Diversity council for her community leadership. 

Representing a new generation of Latina leaders that places an importance on preserving grassroots relationships, Aranda-Suh shares the importance of economic independence as a crucial aspect of family stability.  Through her philosophy of “pay it forward,” Aranda-Suh enjoys exploring creative and sustainable ways to inspire future generation of students, employees, volunteers, and families. 

Founded 40 years, ago, NLEI has served generations of Latino families across the city through comprehensive ‘industry-driven’ job training and career placement.  NLEI’s mission is to better the quality of life for Latinos through educational, vocational and employment services. 

Similar to NLEI’s commitment to educating the Latino community, ComEd is committed to educating customers on ways to save energy and money at home. 



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