A panel featuring: Jamie Hebert, Producer, Actor & Adoptive Father; Alec Mapa, Actor, Comedian, Writer & Adoptive Father; Rich Valenza Founder and CEO, RaiseAChild.US
Jamie Hebert is a producer and actor, known for Family Restaurant (2012), Erasing Hate (2011) and Bullied (2010).
Ellen Degeneres has called him “smart, hilarious and funny. Variety has said “Alec Mapa is a freak. No one should be this talented.” With uproarious live performances and ground breaking television roles, actor and comedian Alec Mapa has entertained audiences worldwide in every imaginable medium.
Alec’s television career has gone from desperate to ugly with not one but two recurring roles on ABC’s “Desperate Housewives” and “Ugly Betty”. On Wisteria Lane Alec is known as Gabriel Solis’ personal shopper “Vern” . On “Ugly Betty no gossip report would be complete without the latest from Alec as fashion reporter extraordinaire “Suzuki St. Pierre” .
Audiences first discovered Alec on Broadway in the Tony Award winning production of “M. Butterfly”. He guest starred on over 40 television series, including Alias, Friends, Roseanne, Seinfeld and NYPD Blue. Alec played network television’s very first gay asian series regular role on the short lived CBS sitcom “Some Of My Best Friends”. He then starred in four seasons of the UPN sitcom “Half and Half”. Film audiences howled at Alec as “N’Cream” in the wildly popular drag queen musical “Connie and Carla”. Other films include “Playing By Heart “ ,”Marley and Me” and “You Don’t Mess with The Zohan” .Alec’s “Wisecrack “ stand up comedy special premiered on LOGO in 2005 and has since gained a huge cult following.
Alec has entertained live audiences with Rosie O’Donnell aboard her R Family Cruises and all over the world with Atlantis Cruises. Alec was awarded the prestigious Davidson Valentini GLAAD Award for promoting equal rights for the LGBT community. A tireless fundraiser Alec has toured the country on behalf of The Human Rights Campaign and The Matthew Shepard foundation earning him the unofficial title of “America’s Gaysian Sweetheart”.
Rich is Executive Director of RaiseAChild, guiding its swift growth from starter nonprofit to established organization. For over twenty years, Rich has specialized in corporate brand identity as an apparel marketing consultant for many of the world’s largest sports broadcasting networks. After the 1992 L.A. riots, he created the nonprofit RE-STYLE LA, which awarded half a million dollars to inner city students.