Maria Luz Riofrio
Meet Maria Luz Riofrio, LiSA Initiative, Hispanic Outreach
When Maria Luz Riofrio came to the United States eight years ago from Ecuador, she was determined to create a better life for her family. Her journey led her to First Financial Security, Inc., first as an integral part of both the organization’s Hispanic Outreach and LiSA Initiative and now as National Trainer for the organization.
With her resident visa in hand and armed with more than 20 years of administrative, sales, and teaching experience, Maria settled in Georgia. Here, she found work as a sales manager for a company that sold agro-industrial equipment in South America.
Maria also had a strong desire to help others. She was no stranger to the difficulties that people, especially women face. Her first marriage had ended in divorce the same year she lost both of her parents. Maria considers herself fortunate that her ex-husband contributed to the care of their daughter after they separated. However, Maria had to learn how to care for herself, and it was an overwhelming, and sometimes terrifying, experience.
After finding love again and creating a financially secure life with her new husband, he was tragically killed in a car accident. Once again, Maria started over. Consistent with her bright and optimistic personality, these defining moments in her life inspired Maria to want to help others.
Then, she met First Financial Security Co-CEO and LiSA Initiative Chair Debbie Gerlicher. Debbie shared with Maria the power of the First Financial Security business opportunity, as well as the empowering work LiSA was doing to help women. Maria was impressed with Debbie’s desire to be part of the solution to eliminate the growing crisis of financial illiteracy.
Maria saw meeting Debbie as the opportunity of a lifetime. She now had the chance to follow her passion and help others, especially those in her community. Her diverse background as both an immigrant and a single mother trying to create a better future for herself and her family allowed Maria to connect with agents and her community. She had firsthand knowledge of what many of them had experienced in rebuilding their lives and careers in a new country.
“It’s my dream to be the voice that reaches out to the Hispanic Community,” Maria says. “I am going to do what it takes to spread the word and help my community to achieve it.”