Isabel Rafferty

Isabel Rafferty is a digital marketing pioneer, and the CEO and founder of Canela Media, a New York-based digital media technology company catering to Latinx and Spanish-speaking communities. Isabel launched Canela in the midst of the pandemic, and it is now one of the largest funded Latinx-owned companies, and with female executives at the forefront. The Hall of Femme honoree is passionate about building an inclusive workforce and uplifting the women within it. “I was never the obvious choice for my roles early in my career. . . I had to let my work speak for itself so people could judge my accomplishments, not my gender,” Isabel says. “My teams have always been diverse, and my leadership style attracts self-driven individuals.”

Authenticity is part of Canela’s DNA, and what sets the media brand apart. Isabel understands that the Latin viewer “comes in many flavors,” and Canela honors that diversity. “Our offerings celebrate each of those identities including Afro-Latinos, Hispanic Americans, immigrants and many more,” she says. “Our compelling narrative through a distinctly Hispanic lens, and this audience, is our primary reason for being.”

For Isabel, entertainment and engagement go hand in hand. So what does she love most about her work? “Creating jobs and economic activity in the Hispanic community, and giving this community the missing piece of the entertainment puzzle,” she says. “A simple idea has come so far, and we continue to be inspired with new ways to serve the underserved.”

Find Isabel on Instagram.