Photography by Hudson Taylor

Zlata was born in Riga, Latvia in 1990. Her mother, Irina, was born in Lithuania, but moved to Latvia at the age of two. Her father, Romanov, was from Belarus and met Zlata’s mother in Riga at university. They married in Latvia, and Zlata was their first of three children. Her first language was Russian. Zlata’s father fell in love with Canada (especially the healthcare system), and they came to Canada, seeking a better life, believing in “The American Dream,” not the Communist system under which they were living. Her parents also had some distant relatives in Canada. Latvia has about 3,000 Jews remaining and one functioning synagogue.

Irina is a data analyst with a consulting company, and her father is a businessman and entrepreneur. Zlata works in management consulting as a research associate. She has a brother, David, and a sister, Emily.

Her parents are very happy they came here, especially for the Jewish education their children received and all the opportunities their country has offered their family.

Zlata’s necklaces are amber from Latvia.