This Hispanic & Latine Heritage Month, AEO is proud to recognize the important contributions of U.S. citizens whose ancestors immigrated from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. Throughout the month, we are spotlighting our associates as they share more on their heritage, culture and favorite traditions.
Marielle, Director – Color Services, joined the company fifteen years ago and leans into the hardworking values she learned from her family in her role at AEO. Keep reading to learn more about how she celebrates her heritage and traditions.
Tell us more about your family’s heritage. How do you celebrate your culture and traditions? Why do you think it’s important?
I was born and mostly raised in the Dominican Republic and am the eldest of three siblings. Our first move to the U.S. was in 1981, and we returned to the DR in 1986. Once I graduated college, I moved back to Miami.
Now that I have children, it’s very important for me that they can experience the same kind of celebrations and gatherings my siblings and cousins did when we lived in the Dominican Republic. We come from a large family, so there are always gatherings and fun! One holiday we make an effort to celebrate in the U.S. is Three Kings Day. On this day, the kids get to participate in activities similar to what we did when we were younger. It’s essential for me that they understand my upbringing and how it continues to influence their life today, and I hope they continue to embrace it.
What does Hispanic & Latine Heritage Month mean to you?
While I celebrate my heritage daily through activities like listening to our music, or enjoying traditional foods, I also deeply appreciate the formal recognition of Hispanic cultures during this month, as it offers an opportunity to celebrate and acknowledge our contributions to the USA.
How do you bring your authentic self to work, including your heritage and culture?
I come from a hardworking background where the values of reaping what you sow and putting in efforts are deeply ingrained. I also prioritize being very personable, and consistently make an effort to reach out and collaborate cross functionally.
Do you have a notable Latino or Hispanic figure that you admire and why?
I admire the Mirabal sisters, four brave women who courageously fought against a dictatorship regime in the Dominican Republic. Three of the sisters tragically lost their lives while striving to save others through their courageous resistance. In 1999, the United Nations General Assembly designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women in honor of the Mirabal sisters.