Our Origin story (Part 1 & 2) (Entry Three)
Special guest spotlight:
Dr. Nakisha Castillo migrated to the US from Jamaica over 20 years ago.
She identifies as a Jamaican Filipino and is strongly connected to her Black roots. As an immigrant she has become acculturated to the American system while still maintaining her own traditional, cultural values and beliefs.
Based on her lived experiences she is aware that America has not yet fully created a space for Blacks to live freely. Thus, leading her to educate herself on the Black American experiences through readings and having discussions with her Black American friends.
She is committed to standing up against racial injustices and creating spaces in which all voices matter. Dr. Castillo, is an educator and licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who has worked in community mental health serving minoritized and underserved populations.
In addition she is an Assistant professor of Psychology and the Director of Field Placement at her institution. She is passionate about educating individuals on how to decrease suffering and increase hope.
Dr. Lata Murti is a member of the 2019-2021 Editorial Board of SPARK, the online magazine of the National Center for Institutional Diversity.
She is also co-editor of Educators at Intersections: Gender, Race, and Class in the Lives of Today’s Teachers, forthcoming from Springer Press, in addition to being both an Assistant Editor and contributor to Our Voices, Our Stories: An Anthology of Writings Advancing, Celebrating, Embracing, and Empowering Girls and Women of Color (2019).
Dr. Murti is an Associate Professor of Sociology for Brandman University.
Her dissertation, With and Without the White Coat: The Racialization of Southern California’s Indian Physicians, won the 2015 Dissertation.Com Annual Excellence Award and has been published as both an electronic and paperback book.
Dr. Leticia Rojas has over 20 years of experience working in schools and is currently a full time faculty member at Pasadena City College, where she teaches education for aspiring teachers.
Prior to this role, she was Assistant Professor at Brandman University and a high school teacher in LAUSD for 10 years.
Dr. Rojas is the proud daughter of two Mexican immigrants, a first-generation college student, and proud Queer Chicana.
Dr. Sheila Lakshmi Steinberg has co-authored books including, “Extreme Weather Health and Communities: Interdisciplinary Engagement Strategies” (2017), “GIS Research Methods: Incorporating Spatial Perspectives” (2015), “Community Activism” and “Small Business Ownership” and for the Undocumented Immigrants in the United States Today: An Encyclopedia of their Experiences (Ed.) Anna Ochoa O’Leary, (2014).
In addtion to being President of Irvine Rotary Club, she is Full Professor of GIS, Social and Environmental Sciences at Brandman University, Chapman University System, where she also serves as the Faculty President.
Dr. Steinberg leads the university’s effort to incorporate GIS across the curriculum.