Miami Dade College Foundation proudly honored philanthropist and MDC alumnus Joseph “Pepe” Badía, president of Badía Spices, at the 2017 Donor Next Door Luncheon today for his generous support to Miami Dade College and to the community. Through Badía Spices, Pepe recently donated $1 million to create the Dr. Eduardo J. Padrón Presidential Medal of Freedom Scholarship for deserving students with financial need.
In addition to his support of MDC, Badía has also established several scholarship programs at Florida International University. The advanced food production laboratory at FIU’s Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management has a new name, thanks to a gift from Badía Spices. Pepe also hosts a spice competition at FIU’s Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management and is a major supporter of the South Beach Wine and Food Festival. Just a few months ago, Pepe gave an investment gift to the Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science in Miami.
Over the last 10 years, Badía Spices and the Badía family have made significant financial contributions and in-kind donations to a variety of other local and national charities, such as The Dan Marino Foundation, National Breast Cancer Foundation and Here’s Help.
Badía Spices’ Lori Conduris accepted the award on behalf of Pepe at today’s luncheon.
Donor Next Door is an opportunity for local nonprofits to celebrate an individual or organization that inspires philanthropy in Miami. The annual event is organized by Philanthropy Miami.
About Pepe Badía
Pepe was sent to Miami by his parents in 1960 at the age of 14 via the Peter Pan Childhood Exodus after Fidel Castro took power in Cuba. The family hoped that they would soon reunite in the United States and together live the American Dream. Pepe later joined the U.S. Army and attended what was then Miami-Dade Junior College. In 1967, his father established Badía Spices in a small store at the corner of Southwest First Street and 22nd Avenue in Miami. In 1970, Pepe joined his father’s startup spice and herb company, Badía Spices. The two went from packing herbs and spices to driving them to local bodegas in a station wagon to selling 350 high-quality and affordable products in 78 countries around the world. Today, Pepe Badía is an accomplished businessman who is recognized for his leadership, service and philanthropy to the community.
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