When not on the set, La La Anthony is dedicated to carrying on family traditions. The daughter of Nuyorican (those of Puerto Rican heritage born and raised in New York City) parents, Anthony ensures her son with NBA superstar Carmelo Anthony learns Spanish and Latino culture.

Defining culture

“The Spanish food and music is ingrained into my world. It is all I’ve ever known,” says Anthony, who especially loves barbecues with her extended family.

To keep connected to her past, Anthony is active with the Hispanic community, whether it be appearing in Latina magazine or attending the Puerto Rican Day parade. Says the proud Brooklyn native: “My culture is secure and I stay in touch with that part of who I am.”

Family affair

In addition to diving into her past to keep her heritage alive, Anthony researches ideas to build new traditions to share with her son Kiyan during events such as September’s National Hispanic American Heritage Month.

“My culture is secure and I stay in touch with that part of who I am.”

The 8-year-old Kiyan attends a school rich in Latino traditions where Spanish is spoken half the day; English the other. She also delves into her past relying on her strong ties to her mom for inspiration in raising her son.

“I hope I am my son’s best friend. I want him to feel like he can talk to me about anything because that’s what I used to do with my mom.”

Influencing outward

While Anthony aspires to be a Latina role model in her daily life, she has a bigger vision as an entertainer. She’s had a wide-ranging roster of roles from MTV’s Total Request Live to film and Broadway and even a New York Times bestselling author for her book, “The Love Playbook,” which was followed up with “The Power Playbook.”

“It is important for me to be a role model across the board,” Anthony explains, noting she wants to be cast for her talent—not just ethnicity. “I don’t want to be put into any kind of box.”

How do you celebrate your heritage? Let us know in the comments below!