A day in the life of Neida Sandoval is intense, sometimes unpredictable, and always in motion. Two years ago she became an independent journalist so that she can manage her time better while maintaining a tight agenda where projects and family go hand in hand.
“When I’m not traveling for work, my days begin at 5:30 a.m., from Monday to Friday. I wake up my kids at 6:00 a.m. and I make sure that they have a good breakfast, and at 7:00 a.m., we head off to school,” she shares. “I spend the rest of the morning making the most of the time I have left by focusing on my pending projects, coordinating work and family activities, or creating new opportunities.”
Sandoval lives one day at a time; her goal is to make the most of the time she has and seize new opportunities, as well as take care of her family.
Learn more about Neida below:
What motivated or inspired you reinvent yourself?
When I was abruptly let go from Telemundo in May 2016, from my position as a news anchor on the morning show “Un Nuevo Dia,” I realized it was time to go down a different path, and that it was up to me to determine who I work with and on what kinds of projects I should work on.
That was the defining moment that led me to conquer my fears and make the decision to become an independent journalist. I realized that my close connection to the public is what would guarantee my success in this new chapter. The strong connection I have to millions of people who know my career, express warm feelings towards me, and respect all the years that I dedicated to keeping them informed was the energy that led me to close my chapter as a morning news anchor, and start to write a new one in my life as a social communicator.
I have always admired women that know how to value themselves and decide to fight their battles and overcome challenges that seem impossible. I decided to follow these warriors’ footsteps to conquer new dreams and open up new paths. It’s not an easy task; but with persistence, being around people that give off positive energy, and being focused on what both your brain and your heart tell you, everything you visualize and feel passionate about is possible.
How have your Latina roots influenced the professional you have become? My Latina roots are part of the essence that allows me to achieve the impossible. I consider myself a life warrior with examples that stem from the strong foundation that my parents gave me in my village of Natal Minas de Oro in Honduras. Mr. Abener Sandoval (may he rest in peace) and Mrs. Aida Rivera de Sandoval (who at 90 years old still lives in the house I was born in) made the effort to instill in their nine children (six men and three women) fundamental values that helped us become good people in society, and to believe in our ability to achieve what we set our minds to, regardless of the obstacles that life may bring.
I grew up with four older brothers at home, and at 15 years old, I was forced to migrate from my hometown to the city and continue my secondary education in science and humanities. There was no high school in Minas de Ora during that time, so my older brothers and I decided to leave home as teenagers to continue our education. The separation from the comforts of our home was very difficult to face, but it taught us to be focused individuals and put into practice the wisdom that our parents instilled in us. My mother is also my biggest role model. Mrs. Aida is a warrior of life, a woman of faith, and someone learned how to face adversity; she is brave, loving, wise, hard-working, and completely dedicated to the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of her family. And so I grew up watching how my mother helped those in need. Her altruistic heart is one of the virtues that I admire the most in her. These examples have helped me mold my career as a communicator and be sensible to the needs of others. And this is why I decided many years ago that both the microphone and mass media were not only my way of informing the public and achieving personal success, but also my way to use that power in my humanitarian work, which has led me to collaborate for many years with causes that benefit high-risk families and children in my country of Honduras, in Central America, and other causes such as St. Jude, March of Dimes, and the American Heart Association, just to name a few in the United States.
How are you making a difference? I think that if my life example can help inspire others, I feel like I’ve made a difference and have fulfilled my purpose in the universe.
When we influence others with our actions, we are making a difference, and it could be either positive or negative. I think many people see me as a positive example, and that motivates me to keep moving forward and conquer new dreams, as well as sending the message to millions of women aged 50+ like me and also to the young ones like my daughter, Ali, that nothing is impossible and there is no age limit to continue pursuing new horizons. And it brings me much joy to inspire men to invest in their families and to believe in the important role that they have as fathers, and never stop respecting the women in their lives and give them the importance they deserve, regardless of whether their spouse is a housekeeper or a career professional. As Hispanic women, we are committed to our community and we would sacrifice anything for our families, but we need that kind of positive energy that comes from our loved ones to continue being the backbone of the household that motivates and supports the family core at all times.
One of my biggest goals is to ensure that my 16-year-old twins, Ali and Abito (Aliene and Abener are their actual names), grow up to be good human beings and educate themselves and succeed without being unaware of the reality of those who are less fortunate.
I like the famous Papa Francisco quote that says, “If you don’t live to serve, you’re no good to live.”
How do you believe Latinas are impacting their companies, communities, and maybe, even the world? Us Hispanic women, with our philosophy of life, are leading a movement that is revolutionizing the world. We can lead the most important company, which is the family, and at the same time, be at the top of big companies using our creative capacity while being sensitive of our community’s needs. More and more Hispanic women are taking on positions of power that were once reserved only for men.
In Latin America, Hispanic women have become strong in business in the last few years, and there are movements specifically geared towards empowering girls, defending their fundamental human rights, enforcing laws that prohibit childhood marriage, and motivating them to develop their maximum capabilities and fight to achieve those dreams that seem impossible. The path to empower Hispanic women is open and in action, and that is a grand victory. This is only the beginning.
What are your professional staples (i.e. Leadership, innovation, strong marketing skills). Why are these important to you and what do you think it is that makes you stand out? Cite examples of your specific leadership style, customer focus model and innovative ideas.
I am very proud of what I represent, the opportunities that I have encountered in my life, the people and companies that have believed in me, and in the wisdom that life has given me to achieve the path to constant learning that I’ve been exposed to. After almost 40 years of being in front of a television camera, a career full of big opportunities and journalistic experiences in the most important Hispanic news networks in the United States, five national Emmy awards, important recognitions in my country of Honduras, and many years of contributing to improving the quality children’s lives that deserve an opportunity to overcome abandonment, I can say with certainty that I have utilized the tools that have allowed me to materialize what I’ve visualized. I’m Neida Sandoval, and this is my brand. My first name and last name are synonymous with credibility, honesty, hard work, and perseverance. The respect for those people who have united with me in both professional and humanitarian causes is obligatory. The acknowledgment of those who believe in me and support my ideas, a timely hug, a word of encouragement, networking with people that are at the same frequency as you are to ensure completing a working or altruistic mission, using your passion for what you visualize to spread it to others, the tolerance to accept other ideas – these are all elements that in my life that have made a difference and made me become who I am.
What are you currently working on? As an independent journalist, I began making big dreams come true two years ago that have to do with continuing to positively impact my community and the Hispanic families that need information and guidance to achieve a dignified life. You can catch me on Mondays and Saturdays on my program “En Foco Con Neida Sandoval,” which airs at 11:00 pm on HITN, an educational and entertainment television network. I present an hour-long program of investigative documentaries about the news that is currently impacting the world.
Another one of my big projects is being the Celebrity Ambassador for Toyota. I’ve been selected for the role for two years in a row. I’m the voice and image of powerful campaigns that are focused on acknowledging the much-deserved importance of our Hispanic people in the United States.
We are focused on a national road safety campaign that has various initiatives. It alerts our families about how careful we need to be when we’re behind the wheel. Fasten your seat belt at all times and properly fasten those of your children in their car seats as well. Abrochatealavida.org #abrochatealavida
Teens should not text and drive. #teendrive365
We are urging our Hispanic community to respond to the @Toyota recall so that the airbags in their cars can be repaired if they are damaged. They can go to www.airbagrecall.com or download the Airbag Recall app on their mobile phones. Simply enter you or your family member’s car information as well as the VIN or license plate, and it will tell you if the airbag needs to be repaired and where to go to get it repaired for free. There are 34 million vehicles from 19 manufacturers currently driving through the streets of the United States with damaged airbags, and one-fourth of them belong to Hispanics. If a damaged airbag activates itself during an accident, it can cause serious or even fatal injuries. So, it’s better to prevent this then regret it later, since car accidents are the number one cause of death among Latinos in the United States.
Anything else you would like readers to know? I want to acknowledge my followers on social media that are always connecting with me and discussing the topics that both worry and affect us. I answer their messages and very much enjoy reading all of their comments.
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Published on 11/29/18