Manuel Zarate


Playwright, photographer and poet, Manuel's work in the arts spans mediums. 

He originally studied modern dance until an injury forced him to find a new passion. As a director, he has worked in Oregon, Washington, California, Texas, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Oklahoma, New Jersey, and New York running theaters, directing, writing, acting, and mentoring artists for over thirty years. Manuel is a member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society.

Applying principles of the stage to technology, Manuel became an entrepreneur. He started a company and evangelized the concept that America’s borders are no longer defined by a map, but by the reach of its technology. Manuel is a guest speaker who emphasizes the role of creativity and technology in our society.

His work on the relationship between non-profits and profits had lead to the development of different funding models. In 2004, he established the HBMG Foundation to support the development of creativity and innovation in arts, technology and business. The foundation has advised and mentored hundreds of creative entrepreneurs. 

In addition, Manuel has served as or been honored as:
  • Fellow of the National Theatre Colony, nameTop Ten American Playwrights Northwest LA DSA
  • National Endowment for the Arts – Master Artist in Residence
  • National Endowment for the Arts – Playwright in Residence/King County
  • Washington Institute for Leadership – Director/Seattle, Washington
  • National Juror – American Multicultural Arts Festival/Seattle, Washington
  • Washington Institute for Leadership – Director/Seattle, Washington
  • "10 People to Watch in 98” - The Austin American Statesman
  • Oregon Arts Commission/AIE Playwright 1993-1995
  • Washington State Governors School Director of Arts
  • Executive Director of The Performance School
  • Franklin High School Playwright in Residence
Manuel has been a mentor, and continues to serve as an advocate for creativity as a chief economic driver and foundation for America’s role in the global economy.