In the first of our new series, where we introduce you to nuestros escritores, we're excited for you to meet Kate Oberdorfer.
Kate Oberdorfer
Kate Oberdorfer

Kate Oberdorfer has been writing about and studying Cuba since 2006, but her connection to the island goes back much further than that. Her grandfather, Louis Oberdorfer, was the Assistant Attorney General of the Tax Division under Bobby Kennedy. He had an illustrious career, though one of his most important accomplishments was being one of the chief lawyers involved in negotiating with Fidel Castro to bring the Bay of Pigs prisoners back to the United States!

Kate studied abroad in Havana in 2007 and has returned to the island every year since then (COVID-19 years excepted, of course). However, not being able to travel wasn’t all bad: at the beginning of the pandemic, Kate discovered us here at StartupCuba! Becoming a writer for the magazine, in her words, “became her salvation and connection to Cuba” until she was able to visit again. We, of course, were (and still are) thrilled to have her on the team!

Her favorite article that she’s contributed, however, has been her interview with Ada Ferrer…

Kate has written several wonderful articles for StartupCuba, and–fun fact!–handwrites all her pieces before typing them up. Her favorite article that she’s contributed, however, has been her interview with Ada Ferrer, who won the 2022 Pulitzer Prize in History for her book Cuba: An American History. “She is a goddess!” Kate gushes. 

Related Post: Book Review: Letters from Cuba, by Ruth Behar

When she’s not writing for StartupCuba, Kate enjoys reading (follow her Instagram) for book recommendations), cooking, and singing in her little pink house in St. Petersburg, Florida. She’s also an expert salsa dancer and thrift shopper. Kate would one day like to publish a book written from the perspective of a butterfly writing to a caterpillar, as well as move to a Spanish-speaking country–perhaps Cuba?

Make sure to check out her upcoming series for StartupCuba, Diving into the Diaspora, debuting soon!

The Latest From Startup Cuba

Wish Happy Holidays to the Besos Lovers in Your Life

LA Times: Cuba’s Informal Market Finds New Space as Internet Access Grows

Still Have Turkey Leftovers? Try My Mom’s Elena Ruz Sandwich

A Boutique Hotel Championing the Untapped Talent of Cuba

CBS News: Cuban-Born UPS Driver Whose Reaction to First Paycheck Went Viral Says He Feels “Grateful”

The Continued Effort to Restore Havana’s Historic Neon Glow

A Thanksgiving Recipe: Mojo Turkey With a Mofongo Stuffing

Four Rum Brands Vying to Become the Spirit of Cuba

US News: UN Votes Overwhelmingly to Condemn US Embargo of Cuba

How to Have an Authentic Cuban Travel Experience

Gabriela Rivero is a recent graduate of Harvard College with a major in Sociology and minor in Latinx Studies. She comes from a colorful Caribbean (Cuban & Venezuelan) and Mediterranean (Spanish & Italian) background, to which she attributes her love of sunshine and her addiction to guava pastelitos. Gabby uses her English–Spanish bilingualism in her work with the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic (HIRC), helping immigrants obtain asylum in the United States. She recently started law school at the University of Miami to become an immigration attorney —shocker!-— specializing in asylum law. She enjoys writing, cooking, singing, and playing tennis and guitar. However, Gabby’s favorite activity is traveling to Cuba, exploring her grandparents’ home country and visiting the friends she made while studying abroad at the University of Havana.

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