Tell us about you:

It’s my honor and privilege to work closely with community stakeholders, representing U.S. Bank in the Colorado CSR arena. I am passionate about all things arts as a trained dancer whose endeavors have taken me from the stages in the Southwest U.S. to Sydney, Australia. I am a proud advocate who connects the business and arts communities both as a community leader and professional dancer in the Denver metro area who performs regularly with two Colorado dance companies (and an alum of the Denver Broncos Cheerleaders). My professional growth is fueled by a personal commitment to champion women and cultural platforms, including board service for Latin American Educational Foundation, Latinas First Foundation, Newman Center for the Performing Arts at the DU, Collective Impact Fund of Denver, Fiesta Colorado Dance Company and ArtistiCO. I have certificates from the prestigious Latino Leadership Institute at the University of Denver and the Hispanic Chamber’s Leadership Development Program.

Share a story of your engagement in the arts:

My engagement in the arts is deep-rooted. I have always said that I have a day job at U.S. Bank, representing on the company’s Management Committee AND one as a trained dancer. As a dance artist, I have studied under many local and international dance maestros, namely Colorado treasure, Jeanette Trujillo-Lucero. I have successfully balanced a professional career, a dance career and motherhood for more than 20 years. While I don’t have just one story to share – I have many. Some of my most treasured dance performances have been with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra and my dear friends of Colorado’s-own, Mariachi Sol de Mi Tierra. The beauty of what Jeanette has created through her company, Fiesta Colorado, is a platform to preserve the performing artists of Colorado – of which I am one. And it’s because of organizations like CBCA that promote and tell our stories, that have afforded me 25+ years of stories, performances, posters, newspaper clippings and highlights to share. My dance background has opened many doors for me – including a spot on the prestigious Denver Broncos Cheerleaders in the late ‘90s during their famed Super Bowl years. This is something I most proud of because I represented as one of the few Latinas over the years who have joined their ranks. This was a direct result of many years of dance training in partnership to my dedication to my career and professional development.

What is one new initiative around your company’s engagement with the arts, or your engagement with the arts that you are particularly proud of?

Because U.S. Bank is dedicated to supporting our communities where we work, live and play, I am proud to promote that mission in my community affairs role, brokering the connection to business and the arts. A fitting connection is my service to the advisory board of the Newman Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Denver. Before the pandemic, the Newman Center launched a nationally recognized program, Musical Explorers, where I connected the leader of the fabulous Mariachi Sol de Mi Tierra to the program where he and his band performed to a full house of Denver Public Schools second-graders while they all sang songs in English and Spanish. Music and the arts are the true connectors with our children and families as the benefactors. This program not only brought the community together, but it highlighted the musicianship of Mariachi Sol’s leader – who in his own right is a trailblazer musician who plays multiple instruments, arranges, AND reads and writes music. It’s not likely that without my voice as the connector, this collaborative connection would not have happened. And, of course, we look forward to the 2022 event!

How have arts and/or creativity helped your company draw inspiration or innovation during challenging times?

U.S. Bank is dedicated to supporting the arts community. We have deployed critical dollars over the past year from our Play foundation grant pillar to help stabilize the performing arts sector. As our former market leader, Hassan Salem, stated in a recent article, “the community support was to reopen and keep the lights on. Our quality of life depends on it. We must find ways to fund our symphonies, ballets, exhibits and arts and lecture series. These things are part of the magic of life. That’s why U.S. Bank continues to invest in arts, culture and play-based organizations in Colorado and across the country through its Community Possible program, which provides grants to nonprofit organizations that invigorate the Work, Home and Play pillars of our communities. Performing arts, in particular, help to improve our quality of life – drawing out our compassion, our empathy and our determination to create a better world.”

Why are you involved with CBCA?

CBCA serves as a connector. They bring the community voices together to tell a collective story. It’s more than a membership organization. It’s one that endorses the trailblazers and recognizes the new generation of artists and leaders. I’m blessed to be on both sides of the aisle and that my employer, U.S. Bank supports the work that I do professionally and as a performing artist. The many hats I wear are colorful and I hope to keep dancing as long as I can!