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Zoey 101: What Happened To Kristin Herrera After Playing Dana Cruz?

"Zoey 101" introduced audiences to a number of colorful characters. Though she was only present in Season 1, fans might remember Zoey Brooks' (Jamie Lynn Spears) feisty roommate, Dana Cruz. Played by Kristin Herrera, Dana is fierce and loyal, though she often clashes with Nicole Bristow (Alexa Nikolas). She is strong-willed and outspoken, as seen when she calls out Logan Reese (Matthew Underwood) for his cocky attitude.

Though Dana brings a dynamic and vibrant presence to the show, she is written out after Season 1. It is revealed that she moved to France, where she is attending boarding school. Longtime fans will also have noticed she did not return for the Paramount+ movie "Zoey 102," which was released on July 27th, 2023.

Before and during "Zoey 101," Herrera had a recurring role in the hit soap opera, "General Hospital." After she said goodbye to Dana, she returned to the show as Lourdes Del Toro until 2008, appearing in a total of 15 episodes. Immediately following "Zoey 101," Herrera played other roles, such as Rose Martinez in "Without a Trace", the troubled Gloria Munez in "Freedom Writers" alongside Hilary Swank, and Karen in the horror film, "Resurrection Mary."

In 2020, she returned to the small screen after a 12-year break in an episode of the rebooted "All That," where she reunited with the "Zoey 101" cast. The following year, she returned as Karen for the sequel of her 2007 film, "The Legend of Resurrection Mary."

Herrera is married and has a child

Fans who have questioned why Dana was written out of "Zoey 101" will have to wonder for a little while longer. As of 2023, there is no confirmation as to why the actor left, but there are rumors that Kristin Herrera's behavior toward Alexa Nikolas — who has been very open about being bullied on set — was a factor in her being let go. In particular, Nikolas alleges that Herrera pushed her into a rock while filming. Other rumors mention that Herrera was let go because she looked older than her costars (via Distractify).

During her break from acting, Herrera became engaged to Daniel Novak in 2020, which was revealed via her Instagram. The two welcomed a baby in May of 2022 and tied the knot in October of the same year. She also likes to travel, having shared photos of her excursions to places such as Hawaii and Greece. However, fans who want to keep up with Herrera's life are out of luck because the actress has since set her Instagram to private.