Carla Dirlikov Canales is an internationally known opera singer who has also established herself as a leader in the area of using the arts to advance important social issues. She is a member of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities Turnaround Arts Program, was selected by Foreign Policy Magazine as one of its 100 Leading Global Thinkers of 2015 and won the Medal of Excellence from the Sphinx Organization. In each case, she was the first opera singer ever to receive the honor. As a singer she has received worldwide acclaim, and is best known for her portrayals of Bizet’s “Carmen” which she has performed over 80 times in a dozen countries. She has performed as a soloist at Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall and top international venues in Europe, Asia and Latin America. She is the founder and CEO of The Canales Project, aimed at giving voice to issues of Identity and culture through music and conversation.