Meet Our Team
Director & Co-Founder
Herna (pronounced “Er-Na”) Cruz-Louie is the Director and Co-Founder for American Center of Philippine Arts (ACPA). Herna’s exposure to Philippine dance and music started at the age of 5, when she learned cultural dances to perform at local town fiestas. In 1995 she became a performer with PASACAT Philippine Performing Arts Company of San Diego, CA and eventually became an instructor for music by the age of 18. After moving to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2000, she performed with LIKHA-Pilipino Folk Ensemble as a musician and became Executive Director.
Herna also has over 15 years working as an administrator for nonprofit organizations such as the YMCA, Coaching Corps (formerly Team-Up for Youth), Asian & Pacific Islander Wellness Center, Kearny Street Workshop, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the Oakland Asian Cultural Center. She was awarded as one of Filipina Womens Network’s 100 Most Influential Filipinas in 2011, and was a featured Asian American Studies Alumna of San Francisco State University in 2014.
Co-Founder & Artistic Director
Sydney Loyola toured internationally as a principal dancer of the Bayanihan Philippine National Folk Dance Company and was considered a protégé of choreographer Lucrecia Reyes-Urtula, Philippine’s National Artist for Folk Dance.
Loyola was the founding artistic director for American Center of Philippine Arts, and has mentored various universities, including UC Berkeley, CSU East Bay, UC Merced, UC Irvine and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Her awards include “Young Alumni Achiever in Arts and Humanities” by Holy Trinity University, and the nomination for an Isadora Duncan Award for her 2008 collaboration with Rudi Soriano, Kadayawan.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Jora Atienza Washington