EVA LONGORIA PARKER & GEORGE LOPEZ TO CO-HOST ALMA AWARDS (9/18)

“The 2009 ALMA Awards,” celebrating the outstanding achievements of Latinos in entertainment, will air on FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 18 (8:00-10:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network. The show will tape on Thursday, September 17 at Royce Hall on the UCLA campus.

For the first time in the history of the show, the ALMA Awards will broadcast during National Hispanic Heritage Month, a month in which all Americans learn about the Latino community and celebrate the contributions that Latinos have made to this country throughout its history.

“Thanks to our partnership with ABC, we have realized the dream of having the ALMA Awards air during the month in which our community is recognized and celebrated. I can think of no better way to kick off National Hispanic Heritage Month than to show, and to honor, the impact that Latinos have had in film, television and music,” said Janet Murgu’a, President and CEO of NCLR (National Council of La Raza), the largest national Latino civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States.

Building on past successes, the ALMA Awards will bring a new approach to this year’s show. The first new development is the announcement of the co-hosts — television and film actress Eva Longoria Parker will share her hosting duties with comedian and actor George Lopez, in addition to reprising her role as one of the show’s executive producers.

In addition, long-time NCLR partner PepsiCo will also help the ALMA Awards make a splash in Hispanic Heritage Month by teaming up with the show on creative promotions and viewer engagement activities. PepsiCo and its brands see the show as a great opportunity to honor the Latino community through strong support of the ALMA Awards and as a way to connect with viewers and consumers.

“The ALMA Awards is a special show because it represents the determined spirit and soul of the Latino people, and I cannot think of a better person to help celebrate and co-host with me than my good friend, George Lopez,” says Longoria Parker.

Lopez adds, “I’ve been a huge fan of NCLR and the ALMA Awards for years. I love working with Eva and I’m excited to be a part of the show!”

This year the ALMA Awards will also update the format of the show with some modifications to the nominations process in an effort to be more inclusive of the broad array of talent throughout the industry.

The show will focus on “Best of the Year” categories in film, television and music. New categories have also been added to recognize the influence of special segments of the entertainment industry that are shaping positive perceptions of the Latino community, such as emerging young talent (under 18), talent behind the scenes who make the onscreen magic happen, and a sports category in acknowledgment of the increasing integration of the worlds of sports and entertainment.

The newest addition to the 2009 executive production team is Bob Bain, who boasts an extensive history in the award show genre, having produced “The Critics’ Choice Awards,” “Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards” and “Teen Choice Awards,” as well as the “Miss America” pageant. He joins the ALMA Awards production team, which includes executive producers Janet Murgu’a, Eva Longoria Parker and David Chavez, President and CEO of LatinPointe.

The show is presented with the support of sponsors and advertisers. The 2009 Title Sponsor is PepsiCo. Gold Sponsors are Comcast, Doritos, Gatorade, Johnson & Johnson, Pepsi and Quaker. Silver Sponsors include ConAgra Foods, Prudential, State Farm Insurance Companies and Verizon. To date, the key media partners for the 2009 ALMA Awards include People en Espa–ol, AOL Latino and Latino Future.

For more information on “The 2009 ALMA Awards,” please visit www.almaawards.com.

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