How My Latinx Upbringing Made Me a Better Leader

Chief people officer at Intel Sandra Rivera reflects on growing up Hispanic and what that taught her about business success.
Sep 25, 2019 10:30 AM ET

By Sandra Rivera

My parents came to the U.S. from Colombia with $100 in their pockets, 100 English words in their vocabulary, and the dream of a better life for their family. I was fortunate to have a happy and rich childhood–not in money but rich in more important things. I had a loving and supportive family and a sense of optimism and hope. My parents instilled integrity and a strong work ethic in me, and I credit them with laying the foundation for my personal and professional success. Today, as a mother of four, I am working to instill those same values in my own children.

My Latinx beliefs and upbringing have proved essential to my career, which has taken me from working at startups to leading Intel’s network business to today serving as Intel’s chief people officer (CPO). This was not the most traditional career path, but sometimes great opportunities present themselves at the most unexpected times.


Latinx culture is centered around relationships. Strong relationships have trust built on a shared set of values and a sense of responsibility toward a common goal. These are essential to building cohesion in a company. Creating an environment where every individual can be heard, contribute, and feel accountable for their work is key. That’s why we’ve been focusing on inclusion so heavily at Intel and why I strive to be an inclusive leader.

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