For the first time in history, the two-hour special, presented by NCLR (National Council of La Raza)-the largest national Latino civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States-is taking place during Hispanic Heritage Month, a time when Americans celebrate the Latino community and the contributions Latinos have made to our country throughout its history. The ALMA Awards celebrates the contributions of Latinos in the entertainment industry with Year in Review video packages and live performances from some of the world’s most popular acts. Delivering what is the biggest night on television for Latinos, the awards program aired on Friday September 18 on ABC.

TV and film actress, and ALMA’S executive producer, Eva Longoria Parker and comedian George Lopez co-hosted the star-studded event in Los Angeles at UCLA’s Royce Hall with Lowrider Magazine as a media sponsor.

Participating talent included Salma Hayek, Antonio Banderas, Oscar De La Hoya, John Leguizamo, Benjamin Bratt, Jordana Brewster, Cristían de la Fuente, Milka Duno, Selena Gomez, Mario Lopez, Jesse Metcalfe, Amaury Nolasco, Soledad O’Brien, Edward James Olmos, Roselyn Sanchez, Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Jimmy Smits, Lauren Vélez, Sofía Vergara, Kat Von D, and others. Musical performances included Shakira, David Archuleta, Nelly Furtado, Sean Kingston, and Pitbull.

For more than 40 years, NCLR has been promoting the advancement of Latino families in this country, creating opportunities and opening doors. The NCLR ALMA Awards presentation is an integral part of the mission: a national prime-time ABC Network entertainment special with a cause-to show how diversity strengthens our country and inclusion strengthens the entertainment industry.