Founded by Dr. Marta Moreno Vega in 1976, the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute (CCCADI) is a vibrant home for global afro-descendent culture, based in East Harlem, New York City.

A multi-disciplinary center, CCCADI integrates the arts, education, activism and conscious cultural tourism to foster social transformation. We document and present the creative genius of African Diaspora cultures; prepare the next generation of cultural leaders; and unite Diaspora communities.

CCCADI carries out its mission through public art exhibitions, performances, educational programs, workshops, conferences and international exchanges. We reach more than 20,000 people annually throughout New York City, Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa and Europe.

CCCADI is regarded as a pioneer in the field and an authentic source on the historic living traditions of afro-descendent communities in the US and globally. Our programs and pedagogy are informed by Afro-Atlantic aesthetics and philosophies. We are an accessible community resource and a trusted bridge linking afro-descendent artists and communities across the world. CCCADI consciously cultivates multi-generational audiences acknowledging the unique gifts of community elders, adults and youth. Our initiatives and our audiences reflect the dynamic kaleidoscope of global Black culture.



CCCADI is a cultural arts oasis at the crossroads where African Diaspora artists, activists, traditional leaders, policymakers and communities meet to create, dialogue, heal, join our spirits, and consciously collaborate to build an equitable reality for Africans and African descendants.

We envision a world in which the rich legacy of diverse African cultures are valued and embraced as an integral part of world cultures.  We actively work to create a world in which afro-descendent people:

  • Have access to culturally relevant arts education, training, and employment opportunities.

  • Are guaranteed equal rights and opportunities to make a sustainable living for themselves and their families.

  • Live in communities that are safe, healthy, beautiful and vibrant.

  • Leverage their cultural traditions as a source of wisdom, power, pride, healing and thriving.

  • Understand and engage with the global diversity of Black cultural expressions.

  • Use our creativity to empower our people as artists, thinkers and leaders within our homes, schools, and communities - and in our major cultural institutions that present our contributions to humanity.

We envision a New York City that values and embodies the contributions of all and promotes cultural equity for communities of color through public policies and resource distribution.







CCCADI was founded by Dr. Marta Moreno Vega in 1976 as Latin@s were mobilizing for self-determination, racial justice and equity throughout New York City. Following years of international research throughout Africa and its Diaspora, Dr. Vega wanted to build a center where these cultures could be honored, explored and leveraged as a resource for social transformation. Incorporated as the Visual Arts Research and Resource Center Relating to the Caribbean, CCCADI’s first home was donated space at the Phelps Stokes Fund on east 87th Street. The Fund’s Director, Franklin H. Williams, a distinguished civil rights lawyer and former ambassador to Ghana, became Chairman of the Board. The Rockefeller Foundation provided a three-year seed grant. As a seed funder, Rockefeller helped to nurture and establish CCCADI as a preeminent international home for afro-descendent arts and culture in the Americas.       

The mission of the center grew from the recognition that there was only limited information on the African and Native cultures of Caribbean and Latin American countries. Soon, teachers, scholars, and artists were knocking at our doors, participating in building the vision that would become the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute (CCCADI). [READ MORE]


Who we serve




CCCADI’s core programs serve: children/youth, young professionals, elders, local and international artists, families, practitioners of African spiritual traditions - of African descent - and beyond.  

Through our programs and exhibitions, CCCADI reaches 20,000 people annually in New York City and in Latin America, Africa, Europe and the Caribbean.  

With our presence in East Harlem, a number of CCCADI’s programs have a special focus on our neighborhood.




Dr. Marta Moreno-Vega established the center in 1976, inspired by a vision to create an international organization to promote and link communities of African She has guided the capital campaign for the renovation of the landmark firehouse at 120 East 125th Street that will be the Center’s new home. Dr. Moreno Vega has been an advocate for cultural equity cultural studies and education.   As the second director of El Museo del Barrio, one of the founders of the Association of Hispanic Arts, Network of Centers of Color and the Roundtable of Institutions of Colors Dr. Moreno Vega has contributed to assuring that the contributions of African and African descendants are integral to the lives of civil society in the Americas. She has conducted research in Yoruba belief systems in the African Diaspora and has organized international conferences uniting scholars and leading traditional experts focused on expanding the knowledge and importance of sacred African Diaspora traditions. Moreno Vega is co-founder of the Global Afro Latino and Caribbean Initiative (GALCI), a former program of Hunter College/Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program. She is chief editor ofWomen Warriors of the Afro-Latina Diaspora (Arte Publico Press) and author of The Altar of My Soul (One World/Ballantine, 2001). She is director and co-producer of the documentary When the Spirits D



Melody Capote joined the staff of the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute in 1984 as development associate.  She was charged with the task of creating a capital campaign for the completion of their brownstone on West 58th Street in Manhattan, which was completed successfully.   She continued her work in the area of development with the task of identifying, expanding and securing private sector funding for the organization.   As a result she has created and established long-term relationships for CCCADI with the private philanthropic sector with such partners as the Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Hearst Foundation, New York Community Trust, Time Warner and Con Edison. Additionally, Melody plays a vital role in government affairs assuring that the Center is ideally positioned for city and state funding for both programmatic and capital support. In her role as external affairs director, she has served as community affairs representative encouraging collaborations with local organizations like Loiza Festival/El Barrio, Lincoln Center, Studio Museum, Bronx Museum, the Apollo, Summer Stage, Roberto Clemente State Park and others. She is a graduate of the City College of New York and has received various certifications throughout her tenure including a fellowship in the Tennenbaum Leadership Institute at the New School, and Columbia University’s Not-for-Profit Executive Management Certification. She is married to Heriberto Capote and has two children, Jovan and Kailani.


education and public programs



Dan'etta Jimenez is responsible for  the management and development of CCCADI’s education, family programs, prospective new gallery initiatives, and the Center’s ICA Fellowship Program for arts professionals.  Ms. Jimenez was CCCADI’s first Director of Education and served for over 10 years. During her tenure, she developed the Center’s formative cross-cultural, African Diaspora-based curricular programs comprised of performance, visual, dance, and spoken word traditions. Prior to rejoining CCCADI, she was the Director of Education & Public Program at the Museum for African Art, and prior to that served as the Director of Education and Public Programs at the Weeksville Heritage Center. Ms. Jimenez holds a MS. Ed. degree in Museum Leadership from Bank Street College of Education, a B.A. in Liberal Studies conferred by Excelsior College, and program certification in Ethnic Studies from the University of Hawaii at Manoa with a program concentration in African American, Asian, and Pacific Islander communities. 



Kadrena Cunninghma is responsible for implementing and managing various aspects of education programs for schools and educators: including teacher professional development, administration and development of required program materials, and the tracking of expenses, documentation, and evaluation components. A dedicated educator, arts and culture professional with over fifteen years of experience Ms. Cunningham is adept at audience engagement and curation of authentic experiences through imaginative programming. Ms. Cunningham has an undergraduate degree in Graphic/Communication Design from Chicago State University, a Masters from Pratt Institute in Arts and Cultural Management and a Masters of Science in Leadership in Museum Education from Bank Street College of Education.

suhaly bautista-carolina - director of programs


Suhaly Bautista-Carolina is an artist, educator and community organizer. Before joining CCCADI as the Director of Public Programs, Suhaly served as the first Engagement & Education Manager at the public art nonprofit, Creative Time. She is the founder of the Afrofuturism book club, Black Magic and has worked in various capacities with organizations such as Artspace, FOKUS and The Brooklyn Children's Museum. In 2015, she was a panelist at ArtPrize7's "Reflecting the Times: Arts & Activism" alongside Dread Scott and Arts.Black. She is a 2016 alumna of CCCADI’s Innovative Cultural Advocacy Fellowship and a recent graduate of Columbia University's Summer Teachers and Scholars Institute, "The Many Worlds of Black New York." Her photographic documents and writings have been published in Insight Magazine, United Nations’ International Museum of Women and Caribbean Vistas Journal. She has enjoyed solo exhibitions at NYU and La Casa Azul Bookstore. As of 2016, she is also a Weeksville Ambassador and Summer Arts Residency Fellow Scholarship recipient. Suhaly earned her B.A. and MPA from NYU, where she was named one of “NYU’s 15 Most Influential Students.” She lives in Brooklyn with her wife, Naiema.


Photo Credit: King Texas 

Photo Credit: King Texas 

Janet L. Sackey- Communications and Social Media coordinator


Janet L. Sackey is a social media specialist, blogger, and aspiring artist dedicated to uniting the African Diaspora through communications initiatives. She graduated from West Chester University with a B.A in World History and Web Technology. Before joining the CCCADI staff, she was the Social Media Manager for One.1 Management and IB Talent Management. In 2012, she founded the music blog The Musical Hipster Feed to promote the underground, local and global music scenes. She was a 2015 participant in the NYCT Cultural Agenda Fund, Cultural Advocacy & Equity Program. In the future, she plans on having a website geared towards the narratives of people of color and having an online globally influenced shop. Janet manages all communications, social media accounts, digital work, PR assignments, and collateral development.


Nicole reiner-Director of development


Nicole Reiner is an arts administrator, fundraiser and writer dedicated to developing holistic strategies to achieve nonprofit organizational success and sustainability. Nicole built a strong foundation working in the development offices of two of the largest art museums in New York, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and MoMA, before connecting with her passion for the grassroots work of community-based organizations like CCCADI. A 2015 alumna of CCCADI’s Innovative Cultural Advocacy Fellowship for culturally diverse mid-career professionals, Nicole holds an M.A. in Museum Studies from New York University and a B.A. in Art History from Grinnell College and her thinking on the post-colonial and neoliberal contexts of U.S. museums has been published in the International Journal of the Inclusive Museum (2013) and Rutgers Art Review (2016).








Literary Agent

Monifa Akinwole-Bandele, secretary

Campaign Director

Bobby Shepard, treasurer

Independent Filmmaker

Lumumba Akinwole-Bandele

Senior Organizer/Criminal Justice Project
NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund

Sandino Sanchez     

Director of Teen Employment Programs
Children’s Aid Society

Marinieves Alba

Educator and Cultural Advocate

Nyoka Acevedo


Sapna Lal


kv pic.jpg


Independent Investment Adviser,                



Marta Moreno Vega




New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito

New York City Council Member Maria del Carmen Arroyo

New York City Council Member Helen Rosenthal

New York City Council Member Laurie Cumbo

New York City Council Manhattan Delegation

New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer

Rockefeller Brothers Fund

Rockefeller Foundation

The American Alliance of Museums - Museums Connect

Time Warner Foundation

Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone (UMEZ)

Verizon, Inc.

AARP Foundation

American Express Foundation 

Bloomberg Foundation

Con Edison

Deutsche Bank Foundation

Harlem Community Development Corporation

Ford Foundation 

Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce

MetLife Foundation

Nielsen, Inc.

National Endowment for the Arts

New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA)

New York State Senator Kevin Parker

New York State Senator Bill Perkins

New York State Assembly Member Carmen Arroyo

New York State Assembly Member Robert Rodriguez

New York Women’s Foundation

New York Community Trust

NYC Dept. of Cultural Affairs (NYCDCA/CDF)


NYU Institute of African American Affairs

Raw Space/Image Nation Cinema Foundation

Taino Towers/El Barrio

The Apollo Theater

The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce

The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture








Community Board 11

Dwyer Cultural Center

East Harlem Cafe

East Harlem Community Alliance

El Museo del Barrio

Harlem Park to Park (HP2P)

Harlem Week

Inter American University of Puerto Rico

New Harlem East Merchants’ Assn.

Julia Burgos Cultural Center

Los Hermanos Fraternos de Loiza

NYU Department of Anthropology

NYU Department of Art and Public Policy