MIAMI — The Spanish Broadcast System has hired a Florida lawyer as its next executive vice president and general counsel.
Richard D. Lara will be in charge of SBS’s legal affairs and will be reporting to Raul Alarcon, chairman, CEO and president of the company, according to Florida Business Daily.
Lara said what he was looking forward to helping the company expand.
“To meaningfully shape and implement strategies to expand our unique brand of entertainment and news to the ever growing Hispanic market,” Lara told The Florida Record in an email interview.
“The dynamic and creative culture at Spanish Broadcasting System combined with the emphasis on the business side of the law really is a dream job for me,” he said. “It's a wonderful opportunity to work in the media world for an iconic company serving the interests of the Spanish-speaking audiences throughout the U.S.”
Lara has practiced law for about 20 years, his latest time being at Mase Lara, P.A., a trial-law firm based in Miami. In his career, he has focused on civil and commercial litigation.
Lara said he believed his background “counseling a broad array of corporations in all manner of litigation and arbitration” has prepared him for this role.
“As a trial attorney, my intimate knowledge of taking a case successfully through a jury verdict is a significant advantage when negotiating solutions to business disputes,” he said.
According to a news release, Lara also is a commissioner of the Judicial Nominating Commission for Florida’s 3rd District Court of Appeal, a member of the American Inns of Court, the Cuban American Bar Association, the Florida Bar’s Professionalism Committee, Ethics Committee and Consumer Protection Law Committee. He also was named Man of the Year by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and is the former chair of the 11th Judicial Circuit Grievance Committee for the Florida Bar.
Lara, who speaks Spanish fluently, completed his law studies at the Boston College Law School and his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan.
Lara will be in charge of the legal and corporate-affairs department that includes legal and business affairs, corporate compliance, government relations, corporate social responsibility, community empowerment, standards and practices, advertising review and compliance and corporate-PLA services.
SBS is touted as the largest publicly-traded Hispanic-controlled media company in the U.S.
It owns and operates 17 radio stations, operates AIRE Radio Networks and is in charge of a national radio platform that creates Spanish-language programming for more than100 affiliated stations, which reaches 90 percent of the Hispanic audience in the U.S. It also owns MegaTV and several bilingual websites.
In its third quarter of 2016, the company reported net revenue of $35.6 million, which was down from $36.4 million in 2015. That was blamed it partly on falling radio revenue, which cost SBS $1.4 million. The company recently went into a partnership of Aire Radio Networks and Intercambio Media that should increase listenership to 93 percent.
SBS did see an increase in revenue for special events, particularly in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Puerto Rico, as well as a 23 percent increase in revenue from its television segment.