Join us on Friday, March 22, 2024, at The Rooftop venue of Jamul Casino for our third annual Legacy Luncheon, a celebration in honor of Women’s History Month!

MANA de San Diego is dedicated to empowering Latinas at every stage of their lives. With this noble vision, our luncheon is designed to unite friends, community leaders, and advocates in a joyous celebration of significant women’s milestones and accomplishments. We take pride in acknowledging the extraordinary legacy being created by our four esteemed honorees—trailblazing women who continue to break barriers.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Jamul Casino for their generous hosting, which enables us to carry out this empowering event.

We hope to see you there! Get your ticket down below. 

MANA de San Diego has undertaken reasonable steps to lessen the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in connection with the event. 

Our 2024 Honorees:

Magda Fernandez was appointed Port of San Diego Harbor Police Chief/Vice President of Public Safety in May 2022 after previously serving as Acting Chief and Acting Assistant Chief. Chief Fernandez is the first Latina to serve in the role of Chief of Harbor Police. She joined the Port of San Diego Harbor Police Department as a recruit in 2001 and rose through the ranks to captain in February 2021.

Over the years, she has led various department units, including investigations and intelligence, professional standards, and training as well as the patrol and administrative sections. Chief Fernandez also represented Harbor Police as a detective on the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force and helped establish the department’s Terrorism Liaison Officer program, which focuses on educating officers and members of the Port community on being aware of potential terrorism and criminal activities.

From 1994 to 2018, she served in the U.S. Coast Guard in various roles, including criminal investigator and environmental and marine casualty investigator. Earlier in her career, she was an emergency medical technician and a rescue diver with the Santa Cruz Search and Rescue Team.

Chief Fernandez’s achievements include being featured on the March 2023 cover of Seapower Magazine, the Navy League of the United States’ official publication, receiving the Port’s 2018 Chairman’s Cup Award for her peer support work in the department, and being named Port of San Diego Harbor Police Officer of the Year in 2008. Chief Fernandez is a graduate of the National Command & Staff College Leadership Program and holds a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Colorado Technical University. 

Diana Fuentes, City Clerk for the City of San Diego, plays a pivotal role in supporting the legislative body, overseeing municipal elections, and managing official records. With over 18 years of dedicated service to the City, Fuentes began as a Community Representative and progressed through various roles, including Director of Legislative Affairs for four Council Presidents. A graduate of Loyal Marymount University, she has excelled as Deputy Director of Elections, Deputy Director of Legislative Services, and Assistant City Clerk. Recently appointed as the first Latina City Clerk, Fuentes is committed to community engagement and advocates for continuous improvement. She believes in promoting the department’s vision: “To connect all San Diegans and their City Government through greater transparency and equitable access,” exemplifying her passion for enhancing local government services. 

When not working, she enjoys her family’s passion for Little League with her husband Christopher and her two children Isabella and Chris. 

Maria Velarde Kachadoorian began her career at the City of Chula Vista Finance Department in 1998. In June 2022, she became the first woman and Latina appointed City Manager of the City of Chula Vista.  

Her strong finance background led the City through the recession and public health crisis. Despite pandemic uncertainty, she led the team that inked the deal on the $1.2 billion Gaylord Pacific Resort and Convention Center on Chula Vista’s Bayfront.  

She has overseen transformative projects such as: Ambulance Services reducing costs for residents and improving response times; the new Loma Verde Community Center; the City’s first emergency shelter; initiatives that better connect diverse communities; and boosted momentum for the University and Innovation District.  

Born in Tijuana and a long-time resident of South County, Maria earned a Bachelor and Master’s Degree in Public Administration from San Diego State University. 

Her greatest accomplishment is raising amazing daughters, Amanda and Marissa, with her husband Robert. 

Congratulations to our 2024 Super Hermana!

Sponsorship Opportunities

For more information on sponsorships please contact us at fcanchola@manasd.org

Check out pictures from our 2023 Legacy Luncheon!