Ray Singh Castañeda
President & Founder
Learn more about the people who make
Sabor del Valle
(A Taste of the Valley) possible every year
Ray Singh Castañeda
President & Founder
As a business development consultant in Silicon Valley, Mr. Castaneda equips business owners with the network necessary to strengthen a business and provide a competitive advantage.
Mr. Castaneda is passionate about empowering the economic and social advancement of low- to moderate- income Latinos and other underserved communities.
As the Board Chair for Sabor del Valle for the past 6 years, Mr. Castaneda brings together culturally diverse vintners and restaurants to support nonprofit organizations making a difference in our community and beyond.
Favorite thing about Sabor del Valle: The joy everyone experiences by giving back and serving our community.
Favorite Wine: Encantos Vineyards, Pinot Noir,
Gustavo Wines, Mario Bazan Cellars
Favorite Latin Food: Fresh Caught Cod Fish Tacos
Dianna Bernal Tuyor
Dianna is a retired QA, Telecommunications /Router Technology Engineering Manager from Nokia. Currently co-owner of Staxx’s Paint Parties. Dianna is a mother of four amazing adult children and a delighted grandmother of 5 brilliant grandchildren.
Over the past 18 years, Dianna has volunteered for several non-profits organizations, serving on the board of directors for Valle Monte League, Chopstix Alley Art, and Sabor del Valle. Dianna’s desire is to give back to her community using her talent as an artist while developing friendships along the way.
“My hope is to inspire the younger generation, without borders, & to believe in their dreams.”
Favorite thing about Sabor del Valle: Besides Ray, the founder, who is the heart and soul of our vision, my favorite thing is the ability to bring out the best of our most unfortunate ones, by serving the underrepresented in our community.
Favorite Wine: All Reds from Gustavo, Encanto, and Ceja vineyards
Favorite Latin Food: I’m an enchiladas freak. I judge on a scale from 1-10 uniqueness
/quality/taste of enchiladas I order from California to N.Y.N.Y.
Erika M. Arevalo
Erika M. Arevalo is from the beautiful city of Uruapan Michoacan Mexico. With Erika, the values of unity, respect, and loyalty are the most important. Family is always first and her 16-year-old daughter is her motivation to be better each day in all aspects.
Erika is currently studying Business Administration at San Jose City College on top of her duties as a single mom and full time job. Perseverance is a key element in her life. She believes the real world demands help and that collaboration is needed to make a difference to achieve any goal.
“I’m happy to be part of a nonprofit organization where I can contribute. I have wonderful people around me that support me. In the same way I am passionate about helping others and contributing in any way I can. I think we give a lot by understanding and being compassionate with others.
A very important key in life is in giving more than in receiving, and I also firmly believe in the golden rule.
Favorite Wine: Red wines are my favorite, Cabernet Sauvignon if I have to be specific, I don’t have a favorite brand.
Favorite Latin Food: I have the best cook in my house which is my mom, she cooks the best authentic Mexican food. Mole is one of my favorite dishes for the elaboration and long list of ingredients that it takes to make.
Sergio has an entrepreneurial spirit with a supportive personality that loves assisting new and established businesses with their ideas all the way through to their success. He has a wide range of experience from a foreign owned small business to mobile strategy, social media strategy & management to business financing. Sergio sat was a board member of Sabor del Valle up until 2013 and now assists as an advisory board member.
Favorite thing about Sabor del Valle: The mission! To raise funds for local non-profits!
Favorite Wine: Carmenere
Favorite Latin Food: Burritos
Public Relations Director
Aimée Escobar received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science and a Master’s Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from San Jose State University. After graduation, Aimee entered the political field as a Senior Policy Aide to then Supervisor, Pete McHugh for Santa Clara County. Remaining active in the political landscape over the years, Aimée has served as Chair and Board Member on several political boards, assisted in several campaigns for office, and serves as an elected Delegate for the Democratic Party in Assembly District 27. Pursuing and obtaining her Master’s Degree allowed Aimée to embark upon a career in land use after already spending several years as an independent Land Use Consultant.
Currently serving as a Santa Clara County Planning Commissioner, Aimée is also employed as a Senior Housing Policy Analyst with the Santa Clara County Housing Authority. In her spare time, she pursues her love of cooking, collecting cook books and exploring the many facets of her culture.
Aimée has served on the Sabor Del Valle Board since 2019.
Favorite thing about Sabor del Valle: The opportunity to learn of new and unique vintners.
Favorite Wine: Viña Cobos Bramare Malbec
Favorite Latin Food: Mexican food, Sonoran Style
Elizabeth Castillo is a Senior Sales Executive for Fidelity National Title in the Bay Area. Fidelity is a Fortune 200 Company*. Elizabeth launched her Real Estate career in the Title Insurance Space in the year 2000. That eventually led to a five year endeavor as a Home Mortgage Banker at Wells Fargo and Chase Bank. Soon afterward, her expanding expertise in the home buying and selling process led her back to her passion as a Business Consultant for real estate professionals in Santa Clara County.
Today her clientele personally believes in her expertise that she provides, how she provides it and the enormous benefits they receive from it. She is also active in various organizations non-profit and otherwise. Currently a member of SCCAOR, FAREPA, NAHREP, NHORA, VNARP and YPN. On a personal note, she just celebrated her 25th wedding anniversary to her husband Luis and is a proud mother of three boys.
Favorite thing about Sabor del Valle: Signature Event in San Jose and the collaborative spirit displayed.
Favorite Wine: Sangria served in 2018
Favorite Latin Food: Sopes
Donna Castillo went from an Executive Admin to a Senior Level Marketing Executive at Fortune 500 Companies in the Bay Area. She overcame a lot of obstacles during that process and found success combining her over 25+ years of corporate marketing experience with specialties that included all corporate branding, print, digital, social, online promotions, and advertising and her real estate career.
Donna has been able to combine her Corporate Marketing experience with her Real Estate Expertise to garner her Sellers top dollar for their property, with the best terms in the shortest amount of time possible. Her Buyers are able to benefit from her strong negotiating skills to purchase their homes at the price and terms that best meet their needs.
All of her clients are able to benefit from her expansive network of potential buyers/sellers, realtors and other housing industry professionals. They are also able to benefit from her true grit because there has not been a situation or a problem she has not overcome to ensure her clients' success.
Chester Ruiz is an experienced real estate entrepreneur and industry leader. His ‘big why’ motivates him to help the next generation achieve the American Dream through homeownership.
Chester provides his marketing experience and develops strategic marketing plans to better serve existing clients and new customers. He taps into his past experience as a building contractor assisting clients with compliance with the California Contractors Licensing Board concurrently offering assistance with obtaining a license. Chester believes in giving back to the community by helping nonprofits increase their capacity to serve the greater good. His greatest accomplishment has been raising his five children who have grown to be productive citizens and caring adults. Lovingly Chester is the primary caregiver of his 99-year-old immigrant Father. “Our greatest privilege is to serve to leave a legacy of hope & prosperity for the next generation, Si Se Puede!®” Chester Ruiz
Favorite thing about Sabor del Valle: I like the fact that SDV Celebrates the history of California farmworkers as our roots and that farmworkers from humble origins are now owners of wineries that are Internationally acclaimed.
Favorite Wine: Céja, Dulce Amor, Red Dessert Wine, Love the name....
Favorite Latin Food: Chicken Mole Enchiladas, I love to make homemade Enchiladas.
Grace-Sonia E. Melanio
Grace-Sonia is a community health advocate and public affairs professional based in Silicon Valley. Currently, she is a program specialist for AARP, leading community event and education initiatives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Prior to joining AARP, Grace-Sonia was the Director of Communications & Health Policy at Community Health Partnership in Santa Clara County, where she led grassroots advocacy efforts towards the passage of a county-wide health coverage program for undocumented residents. In 2013, she was honored with the National Association of Community Health Centers’ Betsey K. Cooke Grassroots MVP Award for her outstanding efforts as an advocate for America’s health centers and patients. Believing that access to the arts is an essential component of healthy communities, she enjoys supporting multicultural arts organizations through philanthropy and volunteering. Grace-Sonia is also a volunteer film programmer for the Cinequest Film & Creativity Festival, and serves as a guest judge for other festivals in the Bay Area.