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Women To Watch: Trend Tracker® Tara Gilani With Alexandra Villoch

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – In yet another segment of “Women to Watch,” Trend Tracker® Tara Gilani tracked down a media executive who’s as high-powered as she is down-to-earth.

Alexandra Villoch is President and Publisher of CBS4’s news partner’s the Miami Herald.

Gilani and Villoch caught up with Villoch at the Miami Herald’s new, state-of-the-art headquarters in Doral.

Villoch has been with the paper since 2000. She was named president and publisher of the McClatchy Company owned Miami Herald on April 8th of this year.

READ: Miami Herald Names First Female President & Publisher

Villoch, born in Cuba, is only the third Hispanic in her role. She’s also a single mom. Her daughter is now a successful lawyer in New York. Also, she is the first female publisher in the paper’s 110 year history. Another feat is the fact that Villoch is a breast cancer survivor.

Both approachable and easy-going, Villoch knows Miami and the media business.

“Miami is the brand, and we cover Miami,” said Villoch. “Today we have over 1.4 million people that every single week touch our print products. In our community, we have to do it in two languages—Spanish and English.”

Priority number one for Villoch is serving the community.

“We can give a voice to people that otherwise would go unnoticed. We can transform and make an impact in our community,” said Villoch.

One of Villoch’s mottos, she told Gilani, is to make time for mentoring.

“I think the key thing in women helping other women in the business place is always take the time to be a mentor,” said Villoch. “I want to hand-off the reins to my city, my community and my company. Mentoring is a way of doing that.”

Watch Trend Tracker® Tara Gilani’s One On One With Alexandra Villoch

One of Villoch’s role models, and greatest inspirations, is her father.

“My father taught me that anything is possible and the only limitations you have are the ones you create for yourself,” said Villoch.

Another thing of great importance for Villoch is that people speak up.

“So many of us sometimes see things that are either inappropriate or an injustice and we stay silent. We should never do that,” said Villoch.

Gilani asked Villoch her favorite song. One song, George Michael’s “Faith,” stands out for Villoch.

“Ten years ago, when I had chemo, every morning I would call my daughter and we would jointly sing this song to one another. This is how we knew we were OK,” Villoch said.

Gilani asked Villoch a series of fill-in-the-blanks, to which she revealed herself to be; an optimist, who wants to be able to say that she has been successful and has impacted people in a positive way, a person who “won’t let negative people bring” her down, and who promises that “your newspaper will be there on time tomorrow morning.”

For more on Villoch, follow her on Twitter @Villoch. For all things Miami, visit the Miami Herald’s website and follow the paper on Twitter @MiamiHerald.

To see more of the women profiled in the Trend Tracker®’s “Women to Watch” segment, click here.

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