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Who is Julio Barrenzuela?
Julio is a one-man movement to ignite Springfield with a love of dancing. In 2009 he was a top ten nominee for the State Journal-Registerís First Citizen award and formally proclaimed Salsa Ambassador to Springfield, IL by Mayor Tim Davlin. He additionally received the Presidentís award from National Image Inc. for his dedication to the mission of education, employment and civil rights for Latinos in Central IL. He has been the feature of many articles and news stories dealing with his motivational programs and initiatives. Born in Lima, Peru, Julio moved to Springfield with his mother at the age of nine. After graduating high school, he joined the United States Navy and traveled extensively around the world. He later attended Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and completed a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing with a specialization in intercultural communication. As a student, he was president of the Latin American Student Association and later founded the SIUC Salsa Club. Upon graduation, Julio returned to Springfield and began his own company- Salsa 29 Productions. His idea was to use the educational, non-threatening, and entertaining value of Salsa music to create customized motivational presentations. He has worked with local communities providing programs for children, adults, older adults, and people with disabilities. This unique and innovative use of Salsa helps people of all abilities and ages to at least try dancing and overcome the limitations they place on themselves. It is his belief, that by overcoming these limitations, people expand their comfort zone and enhance both their professional and social development.