Latinos in the Heartland:
Positive Steps toward a Pluralist Society

Millennium Center / University of Missouri - St. Louis
June 12-14, 2013
 Last Updated: 5 June, 2013

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Speakers - Plenary Sessions

Civil Rights and Political Participation

Guillermo CantorGuillermo Cantor
The Road to Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Update: Where Are We Now?

Guillermo Cantor is the Senior Policy Analyst at the American Immigration Council's Immigration Policy Center (IPC), Washington, D.C., where he leads the Center´s research efforts. He is responsible for identifying key areas of investigation, and developing a broad range of reports and publications that provide timely and relevant analysis of current and emerging policy debates. As a researcher, Dr. Cantor has specialized in immigration and immigrant incorporation, social and political organization of minorities, living conditions of vulnerable groups, and civil society organizations.

Change and Integration

Latino Immigrant Youth: Invisible Facilitators of Integration

Guadalupe MartínezGuadalupe Martínez

Guadalupe Martínez has worked as a Parent Educator, interpreter and translator in the Marshall, Missouri, Public Schools and Marshall Hospital systems. Her special field of interest is in prevention of learning delay, health, and early identification of special conditions affecting children's development. Through the Parents as Teachers program, Guadalupe provides education in Spanish to help parents to be successful in their children's development and to connect them with information on medical services, schools, English as Second Language programs for adults, transportation and social services, which help families adapt in their new communities.

Bertha MendozaBertha Mendoza

Bertha Mendoza has worked for Kansas State University Research and Extension Southwest Area as the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Agent in Southwest Kansas since 2009. Bertha’s special field of interest is Nutrition, Health, and Education. She believes in the importance of literacy as the primary road to success in life.

Miguel CarranzaMiguel Carranza

Miguel Carranza serves as director of the interdisciplinary Latina/Latino Studies program and as professor of Sociology and Latina(o) Studies in the Department of Sociology at the University of Missouri – Kansas City. His research has centered on the fields of Chicano, Latino and Mexican-American Studies and Ethnic Studies, with a focus on Latino children, mentoring, Midwestern Latina/Latino and Chicana/Chicano communities, immigration, and language attitudes.


Ryan BarkerRyan Barker
Missouri Trends in Hispanic Health Disparities in the Last Decade

Ryan Barker, MSW, MPPA, is the Vice President of Health Policy at the Missouri Foundation for Health (MFH). He joined the Foundation in 2002 and assisted in the establishment and growth of the Health Policy area at MFH. He is also currently the Program Director for the Foundation's Expanding Coverage initiative. He is currently an adjunct professor at Washington University's Brown School of Social Work in the Institute of Public Health and at St. Louis University's Aquinas Institute for Theology. 

Katherine MathewsKatherine J. Mathews
Salud de Nuestra Población: A Mixed Methods Strengths and Needs Assessment

Katherine J. Mathews, MD, MPH, MBA, is an obstetrician gynecologist with a background in public health, international work, academic medicine, and healthcare administration. She has dedicated her career to enhancing delivery of high quality, evidence-based, cost effective healthcare with a particular focus on low income and minority populations. For the past two and a half years, Katherine has served as Director of Clinical Services at Casa de Salud. This month she is transitioning to Saint Louis University's Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Women's Health to start a new research division in partnership with SSM St. Mary's Health Center. She will continue to keep a hand in at Casa, leading two policy research initiatives funded by the Missouri Foundation for Health.

Entrepreneurship & Economic Development

Timothy BorichTimothy Borich
Latinos in the Heartland: Living in a Plural Community

Tim Borich has many roles at Iowa State University including Associate Professor, Community and Regional Planning; Associate Dean for Outreach, Design Administration; and Program Director, Extension Community and Economic Development Extension. His research interests include community economic development, leadership development, rural sociology and development, multi-community collaboration, public policy development, distance education, Latino community and economic development, and citizen participation and planning.

Cornelia Butler  FloraCornelia Butler Flora
Immigrant Livelihood Strategies: Gender, Food, and Multi-culturalism

Cornelia Flora is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Sociology at Iowa State University, and Research Professor at Kansas State University. She served for fifteen years as Director of the North Central Regional Center for Rural Development. Dr. Flora is a fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science.  She is author and editor of a number of recent books, including Interactions Between Agroecosystems and Sustainable Agriculture in Temperate Zones. Her newest book is Rural Communities: Legacy and Change, 4th edition.  Her current research includes immigrant community inclusion.


Kimberly AllenKimberly Allen
Improving the Lives of Children through Relationship Education

Kimberly Allen, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor and Extension specialist at North Carolina State University where she teaches in the Family Life and Youth Development Program and holds leadership on several Cooperative Extension programs. Dr. Allen has over 14 years experience working with youth and their families and has lead numerous research projects that focused on curriculum and program development for underserved youth audiences. Most recently, Dr. Allen published Creating Safe and Inclusive Youth Environments: A Guide to Bulling Prevention Programs, a report for the National 4-H Council and the Healthy Relationship Marriage Education Training Program.

Stephanie PotochnickStephanie Potochnick
The Academic Adaptation of Children of Immigrants in New and Traditional Settlement States: The Role of Family, Schools, and Neighborhoods

Stephanie Potochnick, Ph. D., is an Assistant Professor of Public Affairs and Public Health at the University of Missouri. She joined the Truman School of Public Affairs after earning a Ph.D. in Public Policy at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill in 2012.

Her research examines the social demography of immigration and how programs and policies can promote the education and health of immigrant youth. She has developed an interdisciplinary perceptive that examines how social, political, and economic constraints influence immigrant assimilation and shape the context of migrant reception. Through her own work and collaborations, she has examined a multitude of factors influencing the academic adaptation and overall health of immigrant youth including: how experiences with discrimination detract from mental health; how daily acculturation experiences affect moods; how educational support systems of new and traditional settlement communities affect academic motivations and achievement; and how the racial composition of schools affects achievement.

Guest Speaker

William R. Emmons

William R. Emmons
Latino Families and the Financial Crisis

Bill Emmons is an Assistant Vice President and Economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. He conducts policy analysis and speaks frequently on topics including the economy, housing and mortgage markets, and household financial conditions among other topics. Mr. Emmons has been with the St. Louis Fed since 1995. He also serves as an Adjunct Professor of Finance in the John M. Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis.