NAHP Mourns the Loss of Board President Ezequiel “Zeke” Montes, Jr. 1948 – 2013
It is with great sadness that the NAHP Board of Directors shares news of the loss of a dear colleague and friend, NAHP President Ezequiel “Zeke” Montes. Mr. Montes passed away Tuesday, January 29, 2013, from complications due to pneumonia, surrounded by his family. He is survived by his wife and business partner of more than 40 years, Rosalinda; children, Patricia, Christine, Edward, and Esteban, and many grandchildren. The NAHP family offers our sincerest condolences and prayers for the family in this difficult time.
Montes was the CEO and President of Tele Guia Inc., the holding company for three successful Spanish language publications in the greater Chicago Area: Tele Guia de Chicago, El Imparcial Newspaper, and Guia Telefonica. Started in 1985, with a Spanish language TV Guide and entertainment magazine the business grew to nine magazines covering a five-county area. In 1999, he acquired his second publication, El Imparcial, a Cicero and Berwyn based Spanish language newspaper to ensure that the Hispanic community was and continues to be well-informed about their schools and government. In 2006, Montes launched Guia Telefonica, a Spanish language yellow page directory.
Mr. Montes made it a priority in his personal and professional life to help the Latino community, organizing the Latino Book and Family Festival to promote literacy and education to the approximately 25,000 annual attendees. He also served on the Board of Directors for organizations such as the Norwegian American Hospital, the Cicero Chamber of Commerce, the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility, the National Hispanic Media Council, and the National Hispanic Leadership Council. He also previously chaired the Outreach Committee for the American Cancer Society of Illinois, served on a Blue Ribbon Advisory Committee for Morton College, and served as a District Chair for the Chippewa District of the Boy Scouts.
Mr. Montes also had a long and storied leadership role with the National Association of Hispanic Publications, serving as National Board President from 1986-1989, 1999-2003, and finally from 2011-Present, having been elected President by his peers in six different elections. Montes also served in various leadership roles for the organization in between his terms as President. He also served on the Board of Directors for the NAHP partner organization, the National Hispanic Press Foundation. Mr. Montes just helped NAHP celebrate 30 Years of Excellence in Hispanic Print, and in his words at the 2012 NAHP Annual Convention and Business Expo,: “We are a family of publishers that believe in the principles of journalism, business opportunity and giving back to the community.” He will be missed greatly by his publishing family across the country.
There has been an outpouring of condolences and fond memories for Mr. Montes, particularly from NAHP members.
Clara Padilla Andrews, Immediate Past President of NAHP, said, “I am very sad to hear about the death of our NAHP President, Zeke Montes. I will miss his smile, energy and his commitment to the Hispanic media industry, may he rest in Peace. My heartfelt condolences to his wife Rose, his children Christine, Edward, and Esteban and grandchildren.”
NAHP Board Secretary, Norma Condreay said, “Admiraba mucho a Zeke, por su forma de ser, alegre, caballero, y con mucho tino para recibir y sobrepasar las adversidades. Mr. Montes, fue un luchador constante de que se brinde oportunidades a nuestros jóvenes para que nuestra industria continúe y sea cada vez más fuerte. Uno de los comentarios que me hizo Zeke, fue: “Norma, este año es mi ultimo año como presidente de la NAHP y mis deseos es dejar la Asociación con un gran futuro”, “es tiempo de que los mas jóvenes continúen con esta labor, pero siempre seguiré apoyando a la Asociación”. Admiraba mucho a mi amigos, Zeke y Rose, porque hacían una linda pareja y siempre en los eventos que logramos compartir mi esposo y Yo los admirábamos, porque aun teniendo tantos años de casados, ambos pero sobre todo Zeke demostraba lo mucho que se querían. Recordare siempre a mi amigo Zeke como un gran líder, una persona muy alegre, caballero y luchador por el éxito de nuestra industria.
Hemos perdido un gran Líder!, un gran amigo!”
And NAHP Founder Kirk Whisler said, “While others have devoted meaningful time to the NAHP and the development of Hispanic Print – Zeke devoted his life. Over the years Zeke and I traveled together to over 50 cities around the USA and Mexico to talk about the many benefits and qualities of Hispanic Print. Zeke always provided the emotions and honesty that came from his years as a publisher. He wanted the tide to raise ALL the boats, was never happy if only a few were going to succeed. Zeke was truly a WE person, not a ME person.”
When information on services or how to send condolences to the family of Zeke Montes becomes available, the NAHP office will share it. Please contact the NAHP Office at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the information.