Vogue Interview

September 2011


Yaz Hernández is a former fashion industry executive, Internet company founder, philanthropist, and patron of Latin arts. A native of Puerto Rico, she was listed by The New York Post as one of New York’s “top 25 Latino movers and shakers.”

Currently, she serves on the board of her family business, a real estate holding company and operator of various U.S. restaurant chains, which include Applebee’s, Famous Dave’s, and Wendy’s, managing over 85 locations.

She serves as a Trustee for the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), of which she is an alumna. In addition, she serves as Chairman of the Board of the Couture Council, which supports The Museum at FIT. She served as President of the Board of Trustees of El Museo del Barrio, the leading Latino cultural institution in the United States, where she was a trustee from 2003 until 2013. During he tenure at El Museo, she turned their annual gala into one of the most thought after on the Manhattan fundraising circuit.  

Ms. Hernández earned her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Loyola University in New Orleans. She additionally studied Fashion Buying and Merchandising at FIT and attended the Kellogg Executive Development Program at Northwestern University.

Married to Valentín Hernández, a Senior Executive at Citigroup, they live with their son on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, and together they collect Latin American Art. Both are extremely active on the New York City social circuit, and are renowned as dynamic and generous hosts. They often host parties and events in support of Latino artists, designers and cultural institutions, as well as other philanthropic causes vital to the community in New York City and beyond.