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New Directions in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies

April 27 – 29, 2017

Keynote and Plenary Speakers

Click each speakers name to read more about them.

Dr. Joyce M. Bell is an Associate Professor and the Don A. Martindale endowed chair of sociology at the University of Minnesota. Her research—in the area of race, social movements, and the professions—is primarily concerned with how resistance to racism shapes work, occupations & organizations. Dr. Bell’s first book, Black Power Professionals: The Black Power Movement and American Social Work (2014, Columbia University Press) details the impact of the Black Power Movement on the profession of social work. She has also published research on the role of diversity discourse in institutions, higher education policy, and in the law. Dr. Bell is currently working on her second book, Black Power Lawyers: Unique and Unorthodox Methods, to be published by Oxford University Press.

Bell holds a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Minnesota and a BA in Spanish and sociology from the University of St. Thomas. She is an Upward Bound & McNair Scholars alumna and is a past recipient of both the Minnesota and National TRIO Achievers Awards. Dr. Bell has also been awarded fellowships from Harvard University’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, the National Humanities Center, the University of Connecticut Humanities Institute, and the University of Pittsburgh Humanities Center. She is the 2016 recipient of the American Sociological Association Section on Racial & Ethnic Minorities Distinguished Early Career Award.

Eduardo Bonilla-Silva is Professor and Chair of the Sociology department at Duke University. Professor Bonilla-Silva gained visibility in the social sciences with his 1997 American Sociological Review article, “Rethinking Racism: Toward a Structural Interpretation,” where he challenged social analysts to analyze racial matters from a structural perspective rather than from the sterile prejudice perspective.

His research has appeared in journals such as Sociological Inquiry, Racial and Ethnic Studies, Race and Society, Discourse and Society, American Sociological Review, Journal of Latin American Studies, Contemporary Sociology, Critical Sociology, Research in Politics and Society, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, and Political Power and Social Theory among others. To date he has published five books, namely, White Supremacy and Racism in the Post-Civil Rights Era (co-winner of the 2002 Oliver Cox Award given by the American Sociological Association), Racism Without Racists: Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in the United States (2004 Choice Award) (this book appeared in 2006 in second expanded and revised edition and, again, in 2009 with a long chapter examining the Obama phenomenon), White Out: The Continuing Significance of Racism (with Ashley Doane), in 2008 White Logic, White Methods: Racism and Social Science (with Tukufu Zuberi and also the co-winner of the 2009 Oliver Cox Award), and in 2011 State of White Supremacy: Racism, Governance, and the United States (with Moon Kie Jung and João H. Costa Vargas).

Bonilla-Silva has received many awards, most notably, the 2007 Lewis Coser Award given by the Theory Section of the American Sociological Association for Theoretical-Agenda Setting and in 2011, the Cox-Johnson-Frazier Award given by the American Sociological Association “to an individual or individuals for their work in the intellectual traditions of the work of these three African American scholars.” He is very active on the lecture circuit and can be contacted through—Tosha Marshall

Dr. Glenn Bracey is Assistant Professor of Sociology in the Global Politics and Societies Department at Hollins University. His research employs Critical Race Theory to question assumptions in sociological theories and investigate how race fundamentally shapes contemporary social movements. Dr. Bracey received the 2016 Oliver C. Cox Article Award from the ASA Section on Racial and Ethnic Minorities for his article, "Toward a Critical Race Theory of State," which details a theory of state based on implicit assumptions in canonical CRT texts. He also uses CRT to unearth white-privileging assumptions in social movement theories and argue for a race-centered theory of racialized movements. Bracey's current book projects--tentatively titled "Saving Whiteness: White Evangelicalism as a Racial Social Movement" and "21st Century Lynchings"--apply his CRT of state and theory of racialized social movements to contemporary mobilizations. 

Bracey holds a Ph.D. in sociology from Texas A&M University and a BA in political science from the University of Florida.

One of the leading commentators on race in the United States, Richard Delgado has appeared on Good Morning America, the MacNeil-Lehrer Report, PBS, NPR, the Fred Friendly Show, and Canadian NPR.

Author of numerous articles and books, his work has been praised or reviewed in The Nation, The New Republic, the New York Times, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal. His books have won eight national book prizes, including six Gustavus Myers awards for outstanding book on human rights in North America, the American Library Association’s Outstanding Academic Book, and a Pulitzer Prize nomination.

Delgado lives with his wife, legal writer Jean Stefancic, in Tuscaloosa, Alabama where he holds the title of Professor and John J. Sparkman Chair of Law at the University of Alabama School of Law.

Dr. David G. Embrick is an Associate professor in the Sociology Department and African Studies Institute at the University of Connecticut. Formally, he spent a decade at Loyola University Chicago in the Sociology Department. He received his Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in 2006.  He is a former American Sociological Association Minority Fellow; Past-President of the Southwestern Sociological Association; and current Vice President-Elect of the Society for the Study of Social Problems, and President-Elect of the Association for Humanist Sociology.  In addition, Dr. Embrick serves as Founding Co-Editor of Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, the newest ASA sponsored journal of the Section on Racial and Ethnic Minorities, and Associate Editor of Social Problems.

Dr. Embrick’s research has centered largely on the impact of contemporary forms of racism on people of color.  While most of his research is one what he has labeled “diversity ideology” and inequalities in the business world, he has published on race and education, the impact of schools-welfare-and prisons on people of color, and issues of sex discrimination. Dr. Embrick has published in a number of journals including American Behavioral Scientist, Critical Sociology, Race and Society, Sex Roles, Sociological Forum, and Symbolic Interaction, among others. He has been invited to give talks and workshops on diversity, racism in the workplace, and professionalism in over 100 venues, both academic and public.

Tanya Golash-Boza is a Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Merced. She has published five books and 35 articles and book chapters. Her latest book Deported: Immigrant Policing, Disposable Labor and Global Capitalism (NYU 2016) was awarded the Distinguished Contribution to Research Book Award from the Latino/a Studies Section of the American Sociological Association. For more information; see

Dr. Wendy Leo Moore is an Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology at Texas A&M University. A sociologist and lawyer, Dr. Moore received her Ph.D. (Sociology) from the University of Minnesota (2005) and her J.D. from the University of Minnesota Law School (2000). Dr. Moore’s scholarship focuses on the provocative intersections of race, the law, and legal institutions. Her work is epistemologically framed through the lens of Critical Race Theory (CRT), and she applies the CRT framework to empirical social science research.  Dr. Moore is the author of the award winning bookReproducing Racism; White Space, Elite Law Schools and Racial Inequality, which analyzed the intersections of educational and legal institutional contexts and explicated a theory of white institutional space.  She has published a wide range of articles that explore this and other areas concerning race and law, and is currently working on her second book tentatively entitled The Legal Alchemy of White Domination, an examination of the parallel discursive tactics utilized by the U.S. Supreme Court to stall progress toward racial equity in the post-Civil War era and the post-Civil Rights era. She is a past Chair of the Section on Racial and Ethnic Minorities of the American Sociological Association, and an involved member of the Southern Sociological Society.  

SEIRN's mission is to lift up the voice and the leadership of immigrant communities of the Southeast at the regional and national levels. We promote collaboration and exchange between their members, as well as political education and collective action to build just and inclusive communities. SEIRN envisions a shared struggle between the immigrant community and other marginalized communities to build a movement that transforms the Southeast into a place that respects the dignity and the human rights of all.  

Amelia is the Executive Director of Peace Brigades International-USA. PBI is an international organization known for pioneering the practice of protective accompaniment, a strategy of nonviolent intervention in conflict zones. Amelia has worked in the field of human rights for close to two decades, working both at home and abroad. In 2000, she traveled to Ghana to work for the Legal Resources Centre, where she researched the right to work of Sierra Leonean refugees, as well as the human rights implication of water privatization in Ghana. Also during the early part of the 2000s, she served as a Legislative Coordinator for Amnesty International - USA for the state of Tennessee. In 2006, she joined the staff of the Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law in Washington, DC as program coordinator where she designed and implemented human rights programming such as the Genocide Teaching Project, which trained law students to teach the lessons of genocide in area high schools, as well as organized conferences and workshops with racial discrimination in the criminal justice system, public education, following natural disasters, etc.. Most recently, her focus has been on the domestic implementation of human rights laws in the U.S. In 2007, she published an article concerning racial inequalities in the U.S. public education system and U.S. non-compliance with international treaty norms, which led to her being a contributing author to the U.S. Human Rights Network’s shadow report on U.S. compliance to the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD) in 2008. Amelia went on to lead one of the oldest grassroots organizations in Tennessee, Statewide Organizing for Community eMpowerment (SOCM) for four years, where she helped lead the organization through theory of social change and visioning workshops as well as anti-racism trainings, exploring what it means to be an anti-racist organization. Following her time at SOCM, Amelia became executive director of PBI-USA in 2014. Amelia is on the Board of Directors of the Birdhouse Community Center, an active member of the Coalition to Stop School Pushout, and is a founding member of Black Lives Matter Knoxville.

Amelia graduated from the University of Tennessee (Knoxville) with a B.A. in Comparative Studies of Race and Ethnicity, a degree she was able to design through the College Scholars Program. Amelia earned both her J.D. as well as her LL.M. from American University Washington College of Law, with a dual concentration in International Human Rights Law and Gender.

Black Lives Matter is a chapter-based national organization working for the validity of Black life and to (re)build the Black liberation movement. When they say Black Lives Matter, they are broadening the conversation around state violence to include all of the ways in which Black people are intentionally left powerless at the hands of the state. We are talking about the ways in which Black lives are deprived of our basic human rights and dignity.  

Mary Romero is Professor of Justice Studies and Social Inquiry at Arizona State University. She is the recipient of the 2015 Latina/o Sociology Section Founders Award, 2012 Julian Samora Distinguished Career Award, the Section on Race and Ethnicity Minorities 2009 Founder's Award and the 2004 Study of Social Problems' Lee Founders Award 2004. She is the author of The Maid’s Daughter: Living Inside and Outside of the American Dream (NYU Press 2011) and Maid in the U.S.A. (Routledge, 1992, Tenth Anniversary Edition 2002 ) and co-editor of numerous collections, including Blackwell Companion to Social Inequalities (Blackwell 2005), Latino/a Popular Culture (NYU Press 2002), Women’s Untold Stories: Breaking Silence, Talking Back, Voicing Complexity  (Routledge, 1999), Challenging Fronteras: Structuring Latina and Latina Lives in the U.S. (Routledge, 1997.  She has written extensively on careworkers, immigration law enforcement and civil rights.

Dr. Serena Sebring, PhD is a queer black feminist organizer, educator, and mother. Originally born in Boston, MA, Serena came to the South by way of Boulder, CO in 2005, where she found home in Durham, NC and SONG family. Serena lives and loves in Bull City (aka Durham, aka Queer Capital of the Universe) with her partner and teenage children. Her academic background includes research examining the history of reproductive justice and women of color in North Carolina. She is a Taurus, who loves working in the garden, house parties, porch-sitting, and kitchen table talks.

Jean Stefancic is Professor & Clement Research Affiliate at the University of Alabama School of Law, where she teaches and writes about race and law, social change, and the legal profession.  She has written and co-authored numerous articles and books, many with her husband Richard Delgado, with whom she shared writing residencies at Bellagio, Bogliasco, and Centrum.  Their book, Critical White Studies: Looking Behind the Mirror, won a Gustavus Myers award for outstanding book on human rights in North America.  Her book, No Mercy: How Conservative Think Tanks and Foundations Changed America’s Social Agenda (1996) was one of the first to examine that subject.  Stefancic and Delgado served as co-editors for the long-running Critical America series (NYU Press).

Before joining the Alabama faculty, Stefancic spent ten years at the University of Colorado Law School, where she served as an affiliate of the Latino/a Research & Policy Center and on the advisory committee of the Center of the American West.  During her years at the University of Pittsburgh she was Research Professor of Law & Derrick Bell Scholar.

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