Carlos Junquera is a first generation Cuban-American, born and raised in Miami, FL. Carlos grew up in the Miami garment industry where his parents owned a clothing factory. From a very young age and all through his school years, his afternoons were spent working in the factory conducting quality control inspections or packaging the garments in preparation for shipping to their various destinations throughout the world and in his free time often sketched conceptual fashion designs.
Carlos later went into the healthcare field where he excelled as a specialist in federal regulatory compliance. His career focused on the Medicare population and those most at risk enrolled in Special Needs Plans where he developed case management programs tailored to cater to the population’s medical needs. After having worked with major health insurance plans throughout Florida, Carlos was recruited by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. where he manages the global crew medical operations and is the Community Outreach Officer for the LGBTQA Employee Resource Group.
Carlos returned to his fashion roots after meeting his fiancé, Andres Gonzalez, founder of the Fashion for a Cause Foundation (FFACF). Having reignited his inner creativity, in early 2017 Carlos joined forces with Andres to launch FFACF in Florida. After a year of following its original mission to support other charitable organizations in raising awareness and funds through the vehicle of fashion and symbiotically supporting emerging designers and models, Carlos and Andres decided to expand the reach of FFACF and developed programs that truly support the emerging designer through brand development. In addition, community programs to support at-risk minorities, single parents and youth were also developed; these provide a platform to increase self-confidence and economical independence. From these efforts, South Florida International Fashion Week (SFIFW) was born. SFIFW is the capital campaign for FFACF and is a premier fashion event that spans across the Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties with shows in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Weston, and Boca Raton. With the motto 4 cities, 4 concepts, 4 runways, SFIFW showcases high end fashion while highlighting the beauty South Florida has to offer.
As CEO of FFACF, Executive Director of SFIFW, and his career with Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., Carlos is constantly juggling his time to successfully balance his career and passion. His role at RCCL offers him the opportunity to continue helping those during a time of need but, it’s his work with FFACF and SFIFW where his love for community and fashion allow him to flourish creatively and spiritually.
Carlos has styled various designer collections, created numerous avant-garde headpieces for fashion shows and is currently working on a swimwear line in collaboration with Andres while also developing his first couture collection. When Carlos is not working or creating, he enjoys spending time with his fiancé, family and three dogs but somehow downtime always becomes a brainstorming session of new ideas.
Andres Gonzalez was born in Caracas, Venezuela, and developed an interest in photography after working as a Marketing Specialist for Adobe Systems, Inc., sharing activities with amazing graphic designers, photographers and editors.
After accomplishing his first degree in Marketing and working for numerous software companies in his home town of Caracas, Andres moved to Salt Lake City, Utah. There, he started his career by photographing landscapes in some of the most amazing National Parks in the country including Yellowstone, Monument Valley and Grand Teton, among others. But it was not until he moved to South Beach in 2001, when he was inspired by Miami Model Agencies to devote his career to Fashion Photography. Andres went on to develop an extensive portfolio of work living in Miami, traveling to Venezuela, New York, Hong Kong and Las Vegas.
Andres Gonzalez worked as a casting director for the commercial agency Lenz Talent in Las Vegas for more than four years developing portfolios of “new faces” for renowned talent agencies around the world, including Elite Miami, Salute Models in Asia and Mariela+Tibi Model Management in Venezuela. Andres shares his passion for fashion by also shooting red carpet events, soap opera stars and beauty queens. Miss Universe & Miss USA are two of his favorite events working as a press photographer.
After ten years as a photographer, Andres went back to school and accomplished his goal to become a Public Administrator at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. After many years supporting diverse community causes, he founded his own non-profit, “Fashion for a Cause” and has raised thousands of dollars for several organizations in Nevada. He has supported Blind children, Leukemia and Lymphoma Research, Breast Cancer Research, Environmental Projects, Minority Business, and Animal foundations.
Andres Gonzalez moved to Florida back in 2015 joining forces with the Epilepsy Foundation of Florida in its mission to provide health care, support and social services to those living with Epilepsy. During more than two years, Gonzalez brought his expertise in fashion to different fundraising programs benefiting the Foundation.
In early 2017, motivated by his fiancé, Carlos Junquera, Andres Gonzalez launched the Fashion for a Cause Foundation in Florida with Junquera as CEO making some strategic changes to succeed as a non-profit with a corporate direction.
Today, more than one-hundred fashion professionals have donated their time to the Fashion for a Cause Foundation supporting many different projects. Fashion for a Cause Foundation’s capital campaign, South Florida International Fashion Week, became the most ambitious project since FFACF’s opening, and the successful first edition of the event keeps opening doors for a very promising second edition in September 2018, with Gonzalez and Junquera as executive producers and Porsche West Broward as the title sponsor.
Fashion and Charity is the motto for photographer and non-profit specialist Andres Gonzalez. He currently lives in Ft. Lauderdale where he works to support FFACF’s programs for emerging designers and talent-at-risk and networks with corporate and community leaders across Miami Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties focused on continuous development of SFIFW. Known for being an active socialite always scouting for new and exciting opportunities, Andres spends his spare time attending fashion events, galas and community affairs and when he is not out and about with his partner Carlos, both of them enjoy working at home in company of their three fur best friends, Layla, the English Bulldog, Rocky, the Boxer and Bella, the Golden Retriever.