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Rising Stars: Emilio Cortez

Rising Stars: Emilio Cortez

Emilio Cortez is a senior coordinator at the San Francisco 49ers, and a founding member of the organization's first Latino ERG

Photo by T. Lloyd

Emilio Cortez is a senior coordinator at the San Francisco 49ers. He started his career in professional sports in 2019 with the San Francisco 49ers EDU program, which leverages the game of football to educate and empower kindergarten through eighth grade students about STEAM and how they each play an essential role in professional football. Cortez is also a founding member and active board member of 49ers LEAD employee resource group (ERG), which was founded in 2020 and became the first-ever Latinx ERG of the 49ers. 

Cortez was born and raised in San Jose, California, and has always had a passion for art. He fell in love with drawing Disney characters during childhood after a family vacation to Disneyland. He uses his creative talents to create unique pieces of art for the San Francisco 49ers in honor of Latino Heritage month, as well as to use his art background to help develop STEAM curriculum for the 49ers EDU program. Much of his work is inspired by his love for sports and music and can be seen in large scale murals located around the Bay Area.


Rapid-Fire with Emilio Cortez

Who is your favorite athlete?

My favorite athlete is Steph Curry from the Golden State Warriors.

What advice do you have for Latinos who want to break into the business of sports?

The advice that I have for young Latinos and Latinas who want to break into the sports business is to never give up. There will be plenty of rejection letters, but don’t let that discourage you. An opening will come your way, so be sure to find what you enjoy doing off the playing field. There are so many different jobs that play an integral role of every sports organization. Also, never be afraid of speaking up or asking questions; this will open many doors in your career.

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