Former Miami Dolphins Cheerleader Mireya Mayor discusses her life as a National Geographic Correspondent on the Emmy-nominated PBS/NOVA web-series The Secret Life of Scientists.
In a series of three short films, Mayor tells us about her overprotective mother (who wouldn’t let her join the Girl Scouts because it was too “dangerous”), her life as a Miami Dolphins Cheerleader, discovering a new species of mouse lemur, her encounter with guerrillas in the jungle and having her canoe overturned by an enormous river otter.
WATCH: “A Born Explorer,” “30 Second Science,” and “10 Questions for Mireya Mayor”
Alumni Brenda Lowe (2004, 2005) is at it again, taking on the SURVIVOR Challenge. At age 30 she has participated in both CBS shows Survivor: Nicaragua and Survivor: Caramoan. In Survivor: Nicaragua she was the 11th castaway voted out and became the 3rd Jury Member. A few seasons later she was invited to return for the Survivor Caramoan, and can be watched on Wednesday nights at 8:00pm EST.
“This is my second time playing the game and I opted for an entirely new strategy which has gotten me farther in the game than my first time on Survivor Nicaragua. Woohoo!” Brenda has said, and hopes the Miami Dolphins fans will watch her compete for the million dollar prize!
Name: Darlayna Campbell (Minimi)
Years with MDC: 1992 – 1998
First MDC Audition: My first MDC audition was terrifying! I was so shy and unprepared. My mom mentioned when I was 18 I should try out. When I reached that age, the director at the time had a height requirement of 5’7″ or above. I stand all of 5’3″, so that dream was shattered quickly. However, once I turned 21, a new director (Kathy Shashaty) was taking over the squad and that rule wasn’t as important but still mentioned. I remember it like it was yesterday when she said, “you’re tiny, so it’s going to be tough.” I didn’t make the team that year, being cut after the second round. I knew then that I needed experience to gain the confidence that I lacked. I ended up in a dance troupe and performing at local venues. At the next year’s audition, I made it! What an awesome accomplishment.
Most memorable “on field” MDC experience: One of my most memorable moments on the sidelines has to be, “all of the moments”. I know that sounds kind of corny, but am I right?
Most memorable “off field” MDC experience: I will never forget my “off the field” moment as an MDC. It was game day Sunday and after one of our home games, I was scheduled to do an appearance at a restaurant/club in Ft. Lauderdale. I thought it was so crazy that we had to do this after a game but I was also excited as the appearance was at the place I met my boyfriend at the time. To make a long story short, there were about 12 of us in our cheerleader warm ups, as we gathered on the stage for a “group photo,” my boyfriend walked up in front of us all and proposed to me! Everyone was in on it, thanks to our director, Dorie!
Most valuable lesson learned as an MDC: One of the most valuable lessons that I learned as an MDC is that if you try hard and truly want something, you should go for it, even if the odds are stacked against you. Keep giving it your all and you will be so happy you did!
Current Occupation: My occupation for the past 8 years has been a stay at home mom for my 3 kids! I thought being an MDC was demanding, but nothing can compare to the exhaustion that goes with this job!
Accomplishments: So many of my greatest and memorable accomplishments came from being a Miami Dolphins Cheerleader. Making the squad as we all know is a HUGE accomplishment, then to be selected my 2nd year to represent the squad at the Pro Bowl in Hawaii was such an honor! Moving into my 3rd year, I was selected as a captain and received the “Veteran of the Year” award. The accomplishment to work as our director, Dorie’s Assistant for 7 years following being a cheerleader was a dream come true! But again, as amazing as this time was in my life, nothing can compare to the accomplishment of being a MOM!
Name: Cheryl DeLeonardis
Years with MDC: 1971 – 1975
First MDC audition: 1971
Most memorable “on field” MDC experience: Standing on the sidelines during Super Bowl VII and becoming part of professional sports history as the captain of the Miami Dolphin Cheerleaders during the perfect season
Most memorable “off field” MDC experience: Watching our great town come together during the perfect season. Everywhere you went people were waving white hankies. It was much different in those days. We had to raise our own money to travel to Los Angeles for the game. We had car washes, bake sales and garnered so much support. People would just stop and make donations! It was a wonderful and valuable experience for a 17 year old to be part of.
Most valuable lesson learned as a MDC: Leadership and the responsibilities that came with it.
Current Occupation: President/CEO – Ocean 2 Ocean Productions, Inc.
Accomplishments: I have my own Event Production Company, Ocean 2 Ocean Productions (www.ocean2oceanproductions.com) through which I produce large events nationwide. My signature event, Legends for Charity® presenting The Pat Summerall Award, has become a cornerstone event held annually during Super Bowl Weekend. It is the only event the NFL places inside their Headquarters Hotel and benefits St Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Some of the biggest names in sports broadcasting have been honored with this prestigious award. My work has been honored with seven National Telly Awards for Event Production. I am also in charge of all promotions and events for Anthony’s Runway 84, a landmark restaurant in Fort Lauderdale and create Non Profit Meatballs and Martinis events in the New Jersey/New York area for Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza.
For the first time in history, six alumni Dolphins Cheerleaders will be making their way to Mumbai, India for a two month effort to bring American football choreography, glamour and professional cheerleading style to cricket and the second largest sports brand on the globe, the Indian Premier League (IPL).
This group of ladies will be part of a popular sports network type production on the Set Max channel in India, Extraaa Innings, that encompasses game analysis, commentary, and of course celebrity, from the studio and the stadium. They will also be performing live at various locations throughout Mumbai as well as media and marketing appearances during the duration of the season. Just About Sportz, an India-based entertainment firm is responsible for the entire initiative of combining sport and entertainment for the audiences there.
Alumni Missy, Genesis, LauRen, Kayla, Melissa and Lacie, who have all cheered for multiple seasons for the Dolphins, expect to make a favorable impression on some of the most passionate sport fans in the world.
“One of the best decisions a company can make is to hire current or former cheerleaders for corporate entertainment,” said Randall, a four year MDC veteran. “Not only do we have professionalism engrained in our fiber from being a part of such prominent organizations, but we also know what it takes to put on the ultimate performance – something all ages and genders will enjoy and can be proud of, no matter what the culture.”
The IPL is composed of nine teams, consisting of players from around the world, with an estimated brand value of nearly $4 billion. The IPL was the first major sporting event broadcast on YouTube in 2010, contributing to the popularity of the more entertaining nightly scheduled Twenty20, version of the beloved, centuries old game.
Name: Alena Capra
Years with MDC: 2001-03
First MDC audition:
I attended my first MDC audition with a friend, and former college dance team teammate (University of Miami Sunsations). She told me she was trying out and asked if I wanted to as well. I said I would go if I found the right leotard! Needless to say I did, and we both made the team! I think I was one of the last few numbers called and I remember sitting there thinking about how many spots were left. It was an awesome moment when I heard my name. I almost didn’t believe they were calling my name!
Most memorable “on field” MDC experience:
My rookie year was the year of September 11th. They cancelled all NFL games that weekend. I still have the ticket for the game that was never played. The very next game played after football resumed was a major tribute to the USA. I had chills being on the field as they sang the National Anthem and the ENTIRE stadium held up American flags. It was incredible. I remember we cheered with red, white, and blue poms, and did a special patriotic themed half time show. It felt wonderful to be part of such an uplifting performance. I will never forget it.
Most memorable “off field” MDC experience:
Traveling to Monaco to perform at the Laureus World Sports Awards was amazing. I had just made the team a few weeks earlier and suddenly I was expediting a passport, and then on a plane going to Monaco to perform at an international sports awards show! It was amazing that my very first performance as an MDC was in France and nationally televised!
Most valuable lesson learned as a MDC:
I learned that giving back to the community can be such a wonderful and rewarding experience. During my time as an MDC I got the chance to be part of many charitable events, and I realized how important it is to give back to your community. Seeing the smile on others’ faces is the most wonderful reward! Long after I finished cheering I still volunteer, for organizations like Junior League of Greater Fort Lauderdale, and a committee member for A Prom to Remember.
Current occupation: Interior Designer, owner of Alena Capra Designs
I have my own interior design business, Alena Capra Designs (www.alenacapradesigns.com ) where I do residential and commercial interior design. One of my projects was recently featured on the cover of the November issue of South Florida Decor. A few months ago I got an opportunity to work on a new series for HGTV called “Weekends with Luis.” The host, Luis Bosch is a luxury homebuilder here in Miami. Luis helps weekend warrior homeowners transform rooms in their homes over the course of a weekend, right here in South Florida. A large part of my role as a designer is behind the scenes, assisting Luis with the designs. I’ve worked on four episodes for the series. Though, you will catch a glimpse of me on camera from time to time, I’m usually at work behind the scenes – painting, hanging curtains, accessorizing the room. The show debuts Sunday, November 20th at 11 am on HGTV.