Eva Longoria, Ryan Lochte, “Devious Maids” cast on hand at 2012 ALMA Awards

This past Sunday, the 2012 National Council of La Raza (NCLR) American Latino Media Arts (ALMA) Awards event was taped in Los Angeles, honoring American Latinos in the entertainment industry, television, film and music. The awards coincide with the start of Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15). Once again, NBC will air a primetime special of the ALMA Awards, an hourlong program this Friday, Sept. 21, at 8pm ET.

Eva Longoria and George Lopez returned to co-host the event, at which Christina Aguilera received the 2012 NCLR Special Achievement Award for her career and work in philanthropy. America Ferrara, Michael Peña, Nicole Richie and Wilmer Valderrama were also on hand to celebrate the accomplishments of Latinos in the entertainment industry. President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney will be featured in special messages during NBC’s coverage of the event.

Among the presenters at the ALMA Awards were Jake Gyllenhaal, Ryan Lochte, Robert Rodriguez, Zoë Saldana, Natalie Morales, Andy Garcia, Rafael Amaya, Aubrey Plaza and Taboo of the Black Eyed Peas, along with cast members of the upcoming Lifetime series Devious Maids — Ana Ortiz, Judy Reyes, Dania Ramirez and Edy Ganem.

Along with serving as a presenter, Ryan Lochte was also one of six Latino Olympic medal winners from this summer’s London Games who were saluted in a special Olympic tribute. Also honored were Brenda Villa and Jessica Steffens (water polo); Danell Leyva (men’s gymnastics); Leonel Manzano (track and field); and Marlen Esparza (boxing).

Among the performances, Flo Rida performed with Roselyn Sanchez, and the entire show featured theme music written and performed by Pitbull. Martina McBride performed with singing sensation and Latin Grammy winner Luis Fonsi.

Along with NBC’s coverage of the ceremony, the NBCUniversal network mun2 will present the ALMA Awards red carpet special at 6:30pm ET, and Telemundo will host the official bilingual ALMA Awards website at telemundo.com/almaawards and stream the pre-show online. Comcast’s XFINITY TV customers will have access to the show On Demand. Viewers can also watch the entire special online after it airs at telemundo.com/almaawards.

The 2012 NCLR ALMA Awards airs Sept. 21 at 8pm ET on NBC.