Who is Salsa4Life and What Do They Do?

Thanks for stopping by. We are super excited about salsa dancing if you can’t already tell. We love the dance itself, the music, the people, and the culture around it. It is so much a part of us that we just want to help others come to enjoy it as well. To learn more about us take a brief look below at 1) What we do as a salsa dance business 2) Who we are as individuals 3) How we met and became a couple.

Our Mission

Our mission is to support both the growth of dancers in the Latin dance community, and the businesses that serve them.

We accomplish that by helping to grow the Salsa dancing community in Portland, Oregon by hosting and supporting events that are fun, friendly and vivacious!  Second, we provide information through our blogleadership courses and coaching, and our dance event directory to help strengthen individual Dancers, and Dance Business Leaders in the Latin dance community around the world.

What We Do

Group Dance Lessons

Our group lessons are an effective and economical way to learn all of the basic moves in Salsa. Along the way you will burn some calories, have a lot of fun, and meet some great people.

Private Dance Lessons

Private salsa lessons are right for you if 1) You’ve learned the foundation moves taught in all beginner series of classes AND you have been going out to dance regularly to practice those moves.  2) You don’t feel comfortable learning in a group setting. 3) Your personal schedule does not allow you to get to our group classes. Contact us if you would like to schedule a lesson.

Event Planning and Management

We have over 15 years of experience in planning and hosting various aspects of Latin themed events. These include dance parties, weddings, quienceneras, and corporate and private events.

Business Consulting

Salsa4Life also provides online training for dance related businesses. This includes marketing training for a number of dance related businesses. Our online courses include dj training, dance instructor training, promoter / event planner training, dance studio marketing, restaurant marketing. We additionally offer consulting services for restaurants and other event related businesses. Coaching services are also available to those in leadership roles within the Latin Dance Community.

Who We Are

Clara Toro-Douglas

Clara Toro-Douglas

Founder & Owner

Clara Toro, a native of The Bronx, New York, is of Puerto Rican descent. Clara’s roots in teaching, promoting and organizing salsa events in Richmond, Virginia go back to 2006. Two years later, her successes led to the formal establishment of her company, salsa4life.com. Clara’s background in dancing salsa dates back to 1993 in the hot salsa venues of New York City. After graduating from Baruch College in NYC with a B.B.A in accounting, she relocated to Richmond in 1998.
In 2017, Clara and her husband Michael moved to Portland, Oregon. They continued to coordinate the activities of Salsa4Life in Portland and were active participants in the Portland salsa community. In 2021, we relocated once again to Raleigh, NC. 
Michael R. Douglas-Mathenge

Michael R. Douglas-Mathenge

Salsa Instructor / Writer / Web Master

Michael was born in Portland, Oregon. His childhood fascination with magic eventually led him to build a career as a magician. After college, Michael worked as an IT Support Specialist at various companies. He eventually married and has two adult children. He also served as the senior pastor of a small church for 15 years. Today, Michael entertains crowds at private parties, family events, and corporate functions. Michael also works alongside his wife, Clara, in teaching salsa dance lessons and promoting Latin dance events.

How We Met

Clara and I met in July of 2008 at a Salsa event. She had been involved in salsa dancing for a number of years and I was just beginning my salsa journey.  For the rest of the story click here.

Join Our Dancer Community

When you submit your contact information below, we’ll send you our periodic salsa dance newsletter. It’s absolutely free and yet priceless.

As a thank you for joining, you’ll receive our FREE article “8 Tips to Lead and Follow Better” in your first email from us.

Our content that is crafted for you. We listen to your interests and deliver training, inspiration, and news to help you grow in you skill and love for all things salsa.

Our newsletter is void of hype, never pushy, and always free.

We will never sell your information to any third parties and you can unsubscribe at any time with the link at the bottom of the email (but you won’t want to 😄).  View our full privacy policy.

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