Descending from a line of entrepreneurs and artists, Pedro Guerrero, 33, president of Guerrero Howe Custom Media, has an innate appreciation for the art of business. “It really requires a creative sensibility to be an entrepreneur,” Guerrero says.
It was precisely this sense of drive and ability to “roll with the punches” that would later guide him as he co-launched Guerrero Howe Custom Media during a time of economic uncertainty. “Looking back now, I see how my family’s history has influenced me in my professional path, but I don’t know how cognizant I was of that while I was embarking on [this journey],” he admits. “Now, as I am in the midst of it, I see the similarities and it’s very comforting.”
The visionary behind Hispanic Executive recalls a vibrant childhood growing up in California, with his sister and parents—both educators—and a throng of cousins all centered around his abuelita’s house.
At age 13, Guerrero left the familiar comforts of home to attend a prestigious boarding school in the East Coast on a scholarship. Guerrero describes this early separation from home as “fundamental” to his development. After graduating from high school, he went on to pursue his undergraduate studies at Bowdoin College followed by a move to Chicago to pursue a Master of Fine Arts in painting at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. It was during his time at the Art Institute that fate stepped in, launching him on an unexpected career path after meeting fellow classmate and young magazine maven Christopher Howe, now the CEO and publisher of Guerrero Howe.“
Part of being an entrepreneur and part of being an artist is making something out of necessity—that need to create something artistically and that need to carve out one’s own path in life,” he says. “The life of … a successful artist, is one that has a stomach for taking risks.” The launch of Hispanic Executive more than six years ago, and its thriving presence in today’s volatile publishing market, serves as proof that taking smart risks is pivotal to achieving long-term success. “Making inroads into the marketplace was an enormous challenge at first,” Guerrero says. “But now, HE is known among the most prominent Hispanic executives in the country.”
The groundbreaking publication was the first business-to business magazine aimed specifically at Hispanic professionals. Apart from embracing its role as the media advocate for this exploding demographic, “We are in some ways a social networking tool/service for this growing sector of the Hispanic population,” he says.
As he contemplates the promise of HE—as well as that of the burgeoning Latino business community it proudly serves—Guerrero shares these parting words: “It’s important to always have an awareness of where you come from and to take that with you as a muse to continue to pursue what you want and love in life,” he says. “Our background, our history, our culture … should be our inspiration. It shouldn’t be an anchor.”