Hispanic Heritage Month Heroes: Jorge Mihaic
Life is an open book for MIA’s Record Center Supervisor, the son of Bolivian and Nicaraguan parents
This week’s Hispanic Heritage Month Hero takes us to Central and South America, where Miami-Dade Aviation Department (MDAD) Record Center Supervisor Jorge Mihaic traces his roots to. Though Jorge grew up in Miami, his parents were born in Bolivia and Nicaragua and have kept him connected to his heritage, including frequent trips to Nicaragua to explore the history of his ancestors. It just so happens that Jorge’s job at MIA is all about searching through history as well. As MDAD’s public records custodian, Jorge and his team are responsible for responding to all public records requests made to the department and working with the right MDAD divisions to track down the appropriate documents. Jorge’s work and his life are an open book, and he shared both with us recently for Hispanic Heritage Month.
What is your current role at MIA?
I am currently the Records Center Supervisor, responsible for overseeing the handling of all public records requests and subpoenas served to the department. My unit also handles the processing and distribution of all incoming and outgoing interoffice and U.S. Postal Service mail and packages.
What do you like most about your job?
My job requires that I interact with almost all the department’s divisions. My interactions with the other divisions are one of the aspects I enjoy most about my job because I get to meet the diverse teams that make our department run smoothly.
What are some of your biggest career accomplishments?
For many years, I had the opportunity to participate in a program that helped high school students with special needs learn job skills. Through MDAD’s partnership with Project Victory, I was able to mentor these students by teaching them basic skills in an office environment, which helped them feel comfortable about navigating the workplace. It was humbling to see these students learn and conquer their fears about what many people take for granted, like operating a photocopier or a postage machine.
What makes you most proud of your Hispanic heritage?
I was born and raised in Miami-Dade County, but my mother is Nicaraguan and my father is Bolivian. My parents immigrated to the U.S. in the 1970s. They met in college in Wisconsin and later moved to Florida. From an early age my parents and grandparents taught me how to speak Spanish fluently and about our history. My family always made sure that in our household we were exposed to the traditions, food, music, and holidays from both countries. Growing up in Miami where there is a large Nicaraguan community, one tradition I’ve been able to experience every year is La Purisima. La Purisima is a Catholic celebration on December 8, when families and friends celebrate by singing and praising the conception of the Virgin Mary.
How does it feel to be recognized during Hispanic Heritage Month?
Since Hispanic Heritage Month is a time to celebrate people from Latinx backgrounds and the contributions they’ve made to our community, I really feel honored to be recognized.