21 Peruvians that made a difference in 2010


Adapted by Jorge Riveros Cayo

Noble Prize winner, Mario Vargas Llosa; Lima’s elected mayor, Susana Villarán de la Puente, and Super Featherweight World Boxing Champion, Kina Malpartida Dyson, are three of the 21 Peruvians that made a difference in 2010, according to Perú21 daily.  (Photo: Perú21)

Nobel Prize winner, Mario Vargas Llosa; Box champion Kina Malpartida, and Susana Villarán, first woman to be elected Lima’s mayor are among Perú21’s list of 2010 prominent Peruvians. Read about them below:

1. Mario Vargas Llosa: the greatest Peruvian of 2010, according to Perú21. Author, novelist and essayist, he was granted the Literature Nobel Prize in early December. During his speech he said, “Let those who doubt that literature not only submerges us in the dream of beauty and happiness but alerts us to every kind of oppression, ask themselves why all regimes determined to control the behavior of citizens from cradle to grave fear it so much they establish systems of censorship to repress it and keep so wary an eye on independent writers. They do this because they know the risk of allowing the imagination to wander free in books, know how seditious fictions become when the reader compares the freedom that makes them possible and is exercised in them with the obscurantism and fear lying in wait in the real world.”

The Añaños family have built an empire expanded in 20 countries around the world with low-cost popular brands as Kola Real and Franca beer. (Photo: Internet)

2. The Añaños Family (AJE group): This family, originally from Ayacucho, created Kola Real more than twenty years ago. Now they have expanded to twenty countries with their company, Ajegroup. This year’s challenge: entering the competitive markets of China and India. Their objective is to become one of the world’s main multinationals by 2020.

3. Susana Villarán: She is the first woman to become Lima’s mayor. Two months before the elections she had 6 percent of the voter’s preference. But then the polls gave an unexpected but comprehensible twist in the vote intention favoring her against her rival Lourdes Flores. Villaran knows she has big challenges in Lima, mainly to tackle transportation and security issues.

4. The Peruvian Consumer: Despite the economic crisis, Peruvians kept consuming. Peruvian consumer’s confidence generated the economy to keep growing. According to Kantar Worldpanel, Peruvian consumers have changed their consumer habits at all socio-economic levels: sophistication and demand for quality are traits that characterize them nowadays, according to Perú21.

5. Rafael Dasso: As the general manager of Real Plaza mall chain, Dasso, 40, travels constantly around Peru –three times a month– to check on the eight shopping malls situated in different cities around the country he is in charge of. “This job is a challenge, but it is also very gratifying because you offer better quality life and entertainment to thousands of Peruvians,” he says.

6. Gabriela Pérez del Solar: As a volleyball player for Peru’s national team, Gaby participated in Los Angeles’ Olympics in 1984, and earned a silver medal in Seoul’s Olympics in 1988; Gaby has achieved an impeccable career that was crowned this year with her incorporation to the Volleyball Hall of Fame.

José Said, the fourth wealthiest man in Chile, is Peruvian. His latest investment in his hometown, Arequipa, is Lambramani Mall, built at a cost of US$ 90 million. (Photo: Internet)

7. José Said: Born in Arequipa, he is currently the fourth biggest millionaire in Chile. Said is president of Parque Arauco, the successful shopping mall holding that also has important investments in Peru. Despite living in Chile for so many decades, Said still holds Peruvian nationality. “I still have an Arequipeñan passport,” he joked in Arequipa this year when his assited to the opening of Lambramani Mall, built with an investment of US$ 90 million.

8. Jaime Bayly: Boasting a great rating with his television program El francotirador, the controversial author and columnist took public opinion by storm when he announced he would run for president. His heterodox government plan included dissolving Peru’s armed forces, legalizing abortion, drugs, and gay marriage. The result? No political party decided to support Bayly and his controversial ideas.

9. Julio Velarde: President of Peru’s Central Reserve Bank (BCR), Velarde was elected Latin America’s banker by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He was awarded such a title for the correct management of Peru’s monetary instruments to confront the international economic crisis. “These actions protected a dollarized economy such as the Peruvian,” said Emerging Markets Newspaper. Velarde assures the new decade will be extraordinary for Peru.

10. Eduardo Fereyros: A career-made public servant and current Minister of Foreign Commerce and Tourism of the García administration, Ferreyros says, “working for the state has a particular characteristic: public service. I have always participated in projects that I knew were going to contribute to the country’s development; you do not necessarily find this in the private enterprise.”

Peru’s National Surf Team celebrating the victory at the World Surf Championship in Punta Hermosa this year. (Photo: Perú21)

11. Peru’s Surf National Team: Matías Mulanovich greatly contributed to Peru’s victory in the World Surf Championship that took place in Punta Hermosa this year. Sofía Mulanovich, Gabriel Villarán, Analí Gómez, Piccolo Clemente and other world class Peruvian surfers were part of the team that forecasts superb surfer generations to come.

12. Armando Robles Godoy:  “I want to die after meeting with my friends, just like Socrates. I have studied a lot the ways of committing suicide. I am just waiting for the time to do so.” But filmmaker Robles Godoy, author of one of the best Peruvian movies, La muralla verde (The Green Wall), filmed in 1970, died at age 87, from health problems. An innate agitator and social unconformist, Robles Godoy battled all his life for laws that supported Peruvian film making.

13. Gastón Acurio: In only three years he has made Mistura Latin America’s biggest gastronomic fair; and probably one of the most important festivals in the world, according to Madrid Fusión experts. Acurio continues to expand Peruvian gastronomy to the world. There will be eleven prominent chefs from around the planet coming to Mistura’s 2011 edition, including world acclaimed Ferran Adrià.

Brothers and film directors Diego and Daniel Vega Vidal, with actor Bruno Odar, who starred their award winning Octubre at the Cannes Festival.

14. Diego and Daniel Vega: brothers and filmmakers, their film and opera prima, Octubre, was awarded at the Cannes Film Festival. The Vega brothers spearhead a new generation of Peruvian filmmakers that have a fresh, original and less conformist.

15. Kina Malpartida: She grew up practicing karate and later surf, until at 23, she found her niche in boxing. Born to a champion surfer and a jet set supermodel, Kina has an impeccable career as a boxer: in 2009 she won the World Boxing Association (WBA) World Championship Title of the Super Featherweight at 130 pounds, and has kept her title since then. Known popularly as “Dinamita” (Dynamite), she will defend her title in early 2011, once again, against Korean Hyo-Min Kim.

16. Hipólito Rodríguez Casavilca:  He is a high school physics teacher. At 42, Hipólito is also a lawyer and a mechanic engineer. His interactive classes have aroused interest among his students for robotics. “Teaching makes my life meaningful. When classes started, there was only a 30 percent interested in science. At the end of the school year that amount increased to 90 percent,” he says. When there is passion, teaching can become a revealing experience.

17. Duilio Beretta: For this 18-year-old tennis player born in Arequipa, 2010 meant outstanding victories. He recently won the finals stage of Boys’ Doubles events on the French Open at the Paris Roland Garros Tournament, and the US Open, with Ecuadorian tennis player Roberto Quiroz. Experts say he will follow the path of Peru’s tennis stars Lucho Horna and Jaime Yzaga.

A 20-year old model, Juanita Burga has laready participated in NYC, Paris and London’s fashion weeks. (Photo: Internet)

18. Juanita Burga: Four hours of her time are worth US$ 7,000. This 20 year-old gal is the most successful Peruvian model nowadays and her future seems to shine as bright as a star. She has worked for Alexander McQueen and Vera Wang, but also participated in the fashion weeks taken place in New York, Paris and London. “This is a very hard work where you compete with thousands of girls that are aiming for the same thing,” she said.

19. Franco Navarro: built a team even though he cannot brag of being a champion. An ex soccer player of Peru’s National Team at one of its best but long-time moments, as a coach Navarro built León de Huánuco –a provincial soccer club that barely shined– with veteran and unknown players. He fought and turned this eleven-piece team into a war machine that made it to the finals. They lost but after achieving an impeccable participation. His next challenge is the South American Libertadores Soccer Cup.

20. Efraín Aguilar: The sitcom Al fondo hay sitio had an average rating of 35 during the second season. The last episode surpassed 50 points of rating, a memorable event in Peru’s television history. The creator of such a phenomenon is television producer and director, Efraín Aguilar, who wants to repeat the mediatic success in 2011. “We never felt we were the best,” he assured in a raptus of humbleness. Nevertheless, the increasing audience his sit-com has reflects he knows what he is doing.

21. Pedro Querebalú Godoy: On Friday, December 3, Pedro noticed something strange was going on in the streets of Gamarra. Somebody shouted that a robbery had taken place at the Continental Bank with a hostage situation. Pedro (@solopedrito) started tweeting, minute by minute, every detail of this tense situation that captures Lima’s media attention. “Initially I was not worried, but later, when a person came out from the bank and assured that Ruiz Ninasqui (the bank robber) had a bomb, I was afraid,” recalled this 21 year-old graphic designer.