Actress and Philanthropist
Texas-born, Mexican-American actress, Eva Longoria, emerged as a daytime favorite on The Young and the Restless and General Hospital. Longoria then starred as Gabrielle Solis on the ABC-megahit "Desperate Housewives." The global hit show is a multi-Emmy, Golden Globe, and Screen Actors Guild Award winner. Longoria has received numerous awards: People's Choice Award-winner for favorite female TV star, Teen choice Award-winner, TV Guide's "TV's Sexiest Star" in 2009, People's "50 Most Beautiful People" in 2005, People's "100 Most Beautiful People" in 2006 and 2007, People En Espanol' s "50 Mas Bellos" in 2009, Rolling Stone's "People of the Year," ranked two years in a row in the prestigious FORBES Celebrity 100, and TWO years in a row the "#1 Hottest Woman in the World" on Maxim's annual 'Hot 100" list. Previously, Longoria has modeled for Bebe Sport, L'Oreal, Hanes, New York & Co, Magnum Ice Cream, and Heineken.
Longoria also graced the big screen in films including OVER HER DEAD BODY and THE SENTINEL. She will next be seen in DAYS OF GRACE, THE TRUTH and the Mexican epic CRISTIADA. Longoria is the executive producer for the documentary on migrant children working below minimum wage, THE HARVEST. She is also an executive producer for the ALMA Awards.
Entrepreneurially, Longoria owns a production company, UnbeliEVAble Entertainment; two Beso restaurants with chef Todd English; and has her own fragrance, Eva by Eva Longoria. Her first book, Eva's Kitchen: Cooking with Love for Family and Friends was released in 2011.
PADRES Contra El Cancer
Longoria pours her free time, energy and heart into philanthropic missions that make a difference in the Latino community. Longoria serves as the national spokes person for PADRES Contra El Cancer (Parents Against Cancer), a nonprofit organization committed to improving the quality of life for Latino children with cancer and their families. PADRES currently remain the only Latino program in the United States that is focused on addressing the needs of the entire family. Longoria first came to PADRES in 2003 where she began volunteering her time by visiting children with cancer while in the hospital and at PADRES family events. Since becoming spokesperson for the organization in 2005, Longoria has personally contributed and helped raise over $4 Million for the organization through her participation as chair of the PADRES' annual fundraising gala "El Sueno de Esperanza," and other special fundraising campaigns. In addition, Longoria was the honorary chair for "Rally for Cancer," an exclusive rally in Los Angeles which raises over 1Million in donations annually. All money raised benefited PADRES and Children's Hospital Los Angeles. As spokesperson for PADRES, Longoria continues to raise significant dollars to expand the charity nationally; and she continues to volunteer with the organization locally, spending time with the children where her true passion lies.
Longoria works also with the Special Olympics and founded the non-profit organization "Eva's Heroes," which provides an after school program with an inclusive setting for individuals with developmental disabilities to interact, play, and grow with their typically developing peers, and also provides services to families such as counseling, parenting workshops, and sibling support groups. This September marked Eva's Heroes third annual "Casino Night" hosted by Longoria and held in San Antonio, Texas was another huge success and raised hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Longoria has taken an active role in Make-A-Wish France, an organization that grants wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions. Most recently the couple hosted and organized the "Par Coeur Gala" in Paris that proved to be an integral fundraiser for the charity by permitting the association to continuously keep on granting wishes of a lifetime. The Gala honored the country's First Lady, Carla Bruni, for her humanitarian.
In addition to her work with her own charities, Longoria donated an entire house to one of the victims of Katrina through the Oprah Angel Network. Longoria has raised and donated over $5 Million for charities over the years. Longoria was also recently selected as one of 12 female celebrities, including Sienna Miller, Milla Jovovich, Emily Blunt, Susan Sarandon, Helen Hunt, and Mira Sorvino to take part in the "Montblanc Signature for Good" charity initiative to benefit UNICEF's battle against illiteracy. With all of her charitable efforts, Longoria also recently made her second visit to Wendy's in Texas, where she served Frostys to help raise money for the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption.
This year marked the fourth consecutive year that Longoria both hosted and executive produced the National Council of La Raza ALMA Awards on ABC, which honors Latino artistic achievement in the television, film, and music industry. The NCLR is the largest Latino rights and advocacy organization. With her help, the ALMA Awards has earned its highest ratings since their inception and she continues to strive to make each year better than the next. The ALMA Awards, broadcasted on ABC was co-hosted for the first time this year by George Lopez.
In addition, Longoria is working as an executive producer in collaboration with Academy Award nominated Shine Global, a non-profit film production company dedicated to the elimination of child exploitation and abuse through the production of films that raise social awareness and effects political change, for the documentary film HARVEST. The film focuses on the plight of the estimated 500,000 child farm workers whose tireless efforts help feed America. HARVEST presents compelling stories of a select number of children and their families as they travel from their homes in California, Texas, and Florida to harvest crops in multiple states. The documentary presents the challenges these children face as they are unprotected by law; often working 12 hours a day, 7 days a week in temperatures that can exceed 100 degrees, they suffer injury and exposure to pesticides.
Longoria's dedication to a better Earth has lead to her becoming an investor in the eco-friendly development firm The GreenVille Project, which is committed to designing, building and maintaining community based, sustainably built, energy neutral retail marketplaces. The GreenVille Project was born out of a passionate desire to consciously commit to being a part of the solution. Their goal is to take something as basic and fundamental as where people shop and how they consume and turn it into an extraordinary opportunity for change.