An experienced television producer and host, Carmen Maria Montiel recently served as the chair of her local Gala with the Stars and as a judge for the Miss Houston division of the Miss Texas USA pageant. An active member of her community, Carmen Maria Montiel has performed a wide range of roles for the Latin Women’s Initiative (LWI).
Founded as the Mexican Women’s Initiative in 1995, the Houston-based Latin Women’s Initiative supports a number of area nonprofit organizations. With more than 200 members, the organization focuses on helping Latin women and their families through fundraising and volunteer efforts. In 2015, LWI donated $100,000 to support education, healthcare, nutrition, and social services. Aside from accepting direct donations and compiling and selling a charity cookbook, LWI’s primary fundraising program is its annual fashion show. Designed as a way to showcase Latina designers, the organization’s first fashion show took place in 2002. Now one of the area’s most popular charity events, the fashion show also includes an exclusive luncheon and a bazaar with unique items from Latin and Houston-area artists.