2013 Western Region
MarCe Cecilia R. Zerrate, MBA
Managing Director and Founder
Amor and Heritage Traditional Dance Company Inc.
MarCe has been involved in and celebrated the Hispanic Heritage through the arts from her early childhood. She began Folkloric dancing and acting in Cali, Colombia and continued her artistic career when she moved to the United States in 1999, where she professionally performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. She has been involved in coordinating the Colombian Independence Day in Buffalo, has worked with Families of FANA, a non-profit organization established to assist families who wish to adopt from Bogota, Colombia, is part of the Friends of Hispanic Arts, an organization that teaches middle and high scholars the Hispanic Heritage trough the learning of dance, playing instruments and music, increasing the love for their heritages and their self-esteem as they are part of various performances through the year.
What is your Latin American/Hispanic Heritage?
Born in Colombia, From Spanish and Native Colombian Heritage.
How do you see yourself helping shape and define the future of Latinos in NYS?
I will continue promoting the passion for the Hispanic heritage and help increase self-esteem of youths, so that from a young age they grow up educated about their heritage and have pride for their Hispanic culture. I hope the children I work with will have a strong understanding of their background, languages and that they will be proud to be from their country. I will continue to work passionately with children, primarily through the arts, to encourage them to represent their country in a positive manner and love their heritage.
What accomplishment are you most proud of and why?
In 2001, I was hospitalized with a breathing condition. The doctor told me that I would most likely only live another 3 months. Over 10 years later, I have danced in several Operas at the Washington National Opera, earned 2 Zumba certifications, and taught hundreds of children dance. This was all done because of a positive, never say quit attitude. I am proud of myself for not only living, but enjoying life!
What is your favorite quote?
Si Se Puede!