September 15 to October 15 is National Hispanic Heritage Month, and Tidal Basin recognizes several Hispanic employees who give their talent and expertise to Tidal Basin’s humanitarian mission.

Initially observed as a week beginning in 1968 and later expanded in 1988 to cover 30 days, National Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the histories, cultures, and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. We witness these contributions every day in communities across the country.

Tidal Basin is proud to be a part of the rich Spanish heritage and tradition in the United States and even more proud of the extraordinary people who mirror the diverse community we proudly serve. Stay tuned. Over the next four weeks, we will profile several of our team members.

Today we are featuring Daylen Docampo Perez, Associate General Counsel.

Where are you from or the place of heritage?

I was born and raised in Cienfuegos, Cuba. Cienfuegos is a small city in the southern coast of Cuba that is also known as the “Pearl of the South” because of its beauty. I came to the United States in 2004 and have since lived in Miami, FL.

What do you love about being Latino/a, Hispanic?

I love our rich and diverse culture and traditions, our warmth, our passion, and sense of family. I love that any reason, happy or sad, is good for a party. Resourcefulness and resiliency are engrained in us, which allows us to prosper anywhere, anytime, even if we don’t speak the language.

What is something you can share about your heritage that most people don’t know about?

There is not a lot to say about Cubans that people don’t already know. We are passionate, too loud, like to exaggerate, love to dance, and party, don’t like cold weather and drink too much coffee. Besides that, I can say that I grew up in a big family where family lunch every Sunday was mandatory. I grew up with a very strong sense of family first. However, for Latinos, every close friend, even colleagues, are “like family.” Particularly for immigrants, when you meet a fellow Latino/Latina who speaks your native tongue and understand your antics, that person becomes you “brother” or “sister.”

Tu plato favorito, What is your favorite food/meal? Why?

I am a horrible Cuban when it comes to food, except for deserts. I appreciate a good steak and glass of wine much better than any native Cuban dish. However, nothing compares with a good Cuban desert, flan, arroz con leche, and torrejas (“Cuban version of a French toast) are my favorite. These deserts bring back good memories from my childhood.

Anything else you want to share?

As Latinos, we are not afraid to persevere. When I got this country, a friend told me “to make it happen, you got to do what you got to do, even if it takes a little bit of blood, sweat, and tears!” We come to this beautiful country with big dreams, and we fight and work hard to make them a reality.