Global organization EY announced that Gil de Cardenas, CEO of Hispanic cheese, cream, yogurt and chorizo producer Cacique Inc., is a finalist for 2018 the Entrepreneur Of The Year award in greater Los Angeles. The awards program recognizes top entrepreneurs who are excelling in areas such as innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities. Selected by a panel of independent judges, the award winners will be announced at a special black tie gala on June 14, 2018, at The Beverly Hilton hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif.

As the founder's son, de Cardenas learned the Cacique business from the ground up, and has taken the business to new heights since he took over the company in 2009, Cacique noted. He exemplifies his family's entrepreneurial spirit through his cutting-edge approaches, including ushering the brand into its next phase by transitioning the company's significant marketing efforts to the general market consumer, pushing the advancement of operations technology, innovating products to meet emerging consumer trends and shaping the company culture through Cacique's four pillars — family, quality, integrity and authenticity.            

"I owe thanks to my entire Cacique family, and I share this great honor with each and every single one of our team members," de Cardenas said. "From the days of accompanying my dad as he sold queso fresco door to door in downtown Los Angeles to today, when I proudly lead a staff of more than 400 people, I've had the honor of watching Cacique grow into the great company it is today thanks to our teams' hard work and dedication."

Now in its 32nd year, the Entrepreneur Of The Year program has expanded to recognize business leaders in more than 145 cities and more than 60 countries throughout the world, Cacique said. Regional award winners are eligible for consideration for the Entrepreneur Of The Year National competition.