Brooklyn woman becomes first Latina CEO of children’s entertainment company Encantos

NEW YORK — In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, we sat down with the first Latina CEO of a children’s entertainment company.

She shared her journey, from following your dreams to advice for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Susie Jaramillo is an author, artist, and CEO of the children’s entertainment company Encantos.

“I was born in Venezuela. My father is 100% Venezuelan and my mother is Ecuadorian-Irish,” she said.

Jaramillo sat down with CBS2’s Zinnia Maldonado for a chat inside her Brooklyn studio, where their passions for art, technology and Hispanic culture collide. It’s also where he runs his brand.

“As a Latina who went to art school and traditionally paints and illustrates children’s books and writes children’s books, but also built a technology company and uses technology to reach families, I’m a bit of a unicorn,” she said.

The idea for Charms came about when he realized there was a gap in the early childhood education market.

“I’m Latina and I’m trying to raise bilingual kids here in this country who appreciate where they come from, and there was nothing out there — no books, no apps, no animated content — that represented us and our nursery rhymes,” she said. “Fun fact: 26% of children in the United States are Latino. Only 5% of roles in our children’s media space are represented by Latino talent.”

Encantos helps children learn in both English and Spanish through books, videos, and games.

More recently, Jaramillo launched an app called Canticos. It helps children, regardless of their background, learn Spanish or English, and was named the app of the day by Apple last month.

“Our app is designed to help Latinos celebrate Hispanic heritage every day,” he said. “As Latinos, I truly believe that we have the best of both worlds. We have what we love about our culture: our warmth, our sense of humor, our music, our food, our sense of family. There’s all of that, and then there’s this preparation. American”.

While her company is successful today, Jaramillo said navigating the tech space as a Latina artist was difficult. But he hopes her story will inspire other Latino entrepreneurs to pursue her dreams, no matter how unique.

“Lean on what you’re good at and stick with it,” he said. “Don’t let anything hold you back. Don’t let depression speak, negativity hold you back. Just do it 100%.”

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