Antoinette Zel, Robert Rodriguez
Charles A. Gonzalez
WAR on the red carpet
Vice President Joe Biden
Taboo performs to a packed house.
Hilda Solis, Dolores Huerta, Esther Aguilera
The Party The Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute heated up the Walter E. Washington Convention Center with its 35th annual gala and concert finale. The event, peppered with stars, both of the big screen and the politico scene, kicked off National Hispanic Heritage Month, spanning from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15. The People Lt. Col. Consuelo Castillo Kickbusch, who became the highest-ranking Hispanic woman in the Combat Support Field of the U.S. Army, was honored with the Medallion of Excellence, along with funnyman George Lopez for his work as an actor, producer and writer. Neurosurgeon Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa also received the award, honoring his role as a leader in the field of medicine. Vice President Joe Biden delivered a riveting speech, detailing the success of the fastest-growing minority group in the U.S., to a crowd of VIPs, which included Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis and El Rey Network leaders: Hollywood director Robert Rodriguez and Antoinette Zel. Best In Show Latin performer Taboo took the stage for the concert finale, before hot tamale Sheila E. played the timbales, and a grinning Lopez rocked a cowbell with ’70s “Low Rider” funk-sensation WAR. Photography by Eddie Arrossi