Banu Valladares has been an instrumental figure in the development of the arts in North Carolina. She has become an advocate for Latino artists and organizations locally, across North Carolina and nationally. Banu is a singer, dancer, published author and actor. You might have seen her in “Angelica’s Dream”, “Texas Heart” or “Nuestro Barrio”. Banu has been an educator, teaching Spanish, English and English as a second language at every possible level.
In 2016, she was awarded North Carolina’s Latino Diamante Awards for Art and Culture as well as the Sara Wolf Lifetime Achievement Award from ArtSí. Most recently she was Programs and Grant admistrator with the NC Humanities Council and recently went back to the role of advocate and mentor to children as the new Executive Director of Charlotte Bilingual Preschool.