Marcela is passionate about cities and public space. Her personal and professional drive emanates from connecting with others and contributing to improve the place where she lives. Born and raised in Bogota, Colombia, Marcela lived in the US for most of her adult life before moving to South Africa in 2006. Marcela holds a Masters in Public Administration and International Affairs from Syracuse University. She has worked in policy and advocacy for over a decade in organisations that include The Carter Center, CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Partcipation, and Fairtrade Africa. Marcela moved to Johannesburg in 2006 and worked in Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Kenya before moving permanently to Cape Town in 2011 where she founded Open Streets, a citizen-based NGO working to radically increase the use and ownership of streets as public space by individuals and communities across Cape Town. Marcela has recently co-founded Local South, a platform that supports and facilitates dynamic and locally-driven approaches that help build bridges across the Global South.