We had the good fortune of connecting with ALEJANDRO COHEN and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi ALEJANDRO, why did you pursue a creative career?
Pursuing an artistic or creative career came out of an internal and personal call. It was the realization that regardless of the financial rewards, I had to do it, like almost being stuck with it. I knew from what everyone tells you and from what you see and experience that for most a career in the arts leads to financial struggles. It can be daunting, but not only for the financial side of it, but also for the uncertainty you live in when you throw yourself in the creative abyss. Although you could call what I do a career, for me is more helpful to see it as part of a larger collaborative art piece, that when it’s over it will be part of a time and place that all of us contributed to. Ultimately I chose this line of work because of the need for self-expression and wanting to make a positive impact through the arts.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I’m the Executive Director of dublab, a non-profit radio station based in Los Angeles, with affiliate stations in Japan, Barcelona, Germany and Brazil. dublab is unique in pretty much everything we do. Since 1999 we have been defining the voice of online radio, and along with other non-profit organizations in Los Angeles, we have been part of the arts community in Los Angeles. Doing this for one year is not easy, let alone doing it for over twenty one years! It takes a lot of discipline and tenacity, but if you are careful with money and realistic with your finances, you can do it. Over the years I learned that despite of the daily challenges and triumphs you have to be focused on the long term vision of the organization. With every new year, a new reality kicks in that forces you to have to constantly question and reinvent yourself.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I think the neighborhood I live in would be the place. I live in Eagle Rock, and although there is not one particular place I would highlight, the whole area and community that lives in it is wonderful, and inspiring. Driving along Colorado Blvd offers glimpse into an era of Los Angeles that is no longer there in other parts of the city.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would give a shoutout to Mark “Frosty” McNeill. In working with him I learned about the power of positive thinking and the rewards of long-term commitment to the things you believe in.
Photos by Kate Berry, Laura Shumate Illustrations by Jeremiah Chiu, Luis Sepulveda