In 2005, Shirley made her Broadway debut at the Helen Hayes Theatre as the female lead in Latinologues, a comedy about life in America, directed by Cheech Marin. Since then, she has made numerous television appearances, most recently in The Good Wife, Lipstick Jungle opposite Brooke Shields, and Ugly Betty opposite America Ferrara. For the past five years, Shirley has been co-host of the New York City Emmy award-winning "infotainment" show Cool in Your Code. April 2009 marked the fifth consecutive year that the New York Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences honored the show, most recently for Best Advanced Media Entertainment.
It was an honor to partake in a passionate and socio-politically relevant bilingual film like ILEGALES. No matter how pejorative the word "ilegales" may be, we must remember that they are people, with hopes and dreams. One night, in appreciation, the cast made dinner for the extras who played the migrant workers. Co-star Omar Leyva, who is an excellent chef, had us working hard in the kitchen to produce delicious elote, salsa verde, pico de gallo…the works. As we were sitting around the table eating, laughing, and sharing, I was particularly taken by the strength, cooperative nature, and resilient spirit of the Mexicanas around me who had overcome adversity. Hopefully, this film will be influential in bringing a call to action to improve the standard of living in Mexico, bring safety to the women of Juarez, and give respect to and enhance and secure the rights of undocumented people in the U.S.