Anita Fernández, Ph.D., Director, SJCO Online M.A. Program
Anita Fernández’s areas of teaching and research include social justice education, Ethnic Studies and teacher education. As a former high school English teacher in Tucson, she is devoted to preparing activist teachers who are both compassionate and critical and put their students’ lives at the center of their curriculum. Anita is locally and nationally involved in community and professional organizations that focus on Latinx rights, social justice activism, critical pedagogy and transformative teacher education.
She is currently the Director of Prescott College, Tucson, and the Director of the online graduate program in Social Justice and Community Organizing. She is the co-founder and Director of the Xicanx Institute for Teaching & Organizing (www.xicanoinstitute.org), an urban education consulting collective, and the co-founder of La Tierra Community School (www.latierracommunityschool.
Maytha Alhassen is a Syrian-American journalist, poet and scholar. Her work bridges the worlds of social justice, academic research, media engagement and artistic expression. Dr. Alhassen received her Ph.D. in American Studies and Ethnicity from University of Southern California in December 2017. She studies historical encounters between Black internationalism and the Arab diaspora, race and ethnicity, transnationalism, social justice and the arts, travel and global flows, gender, media and narrative healing. While a doctoral student at USC, Alhassen assisted in the launch of the Middle East Studies Program (now a department).
Michelle Banks is a cultural worker and former high school social studies teacher from Washington, DC. A transient resident of San Cristóbal Alta Verapaz, Guatemala since 2003, she does arts-based community research projects with rural children there aimed at reviving and transmitting ancestral knowledge systems. She has an MA in Cultural Sustainability from Goucher College and is completing a PhD in Sustainability Education at Prescott College. Michelle’s dissertation research explores the nexus of place-making and violence in post-conflict Guatemala. Her research disciplines include biocultural diversity, critical ethnography, landscape epistemology, and arts-based action research.
Reed van Brunschot
Reed van Brunschot is a Peruvian-Dutch Visual Artist best known for using sculpture, performance, installations, and video to explore memory and empathy through gestures embedded in everyday life. Emigrating from Lima, Peru to the US as a child and later moving to the Netherlands, she’s had an in-depth understanding of the unspoken, the mistranslated, and the humor of the everyday.
Van Brunschot earned a BS in Fashion from the Amsterdam Fashion Institute, a BFA in Fine Arts and Audio Visual from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie voor de Kunst in Amsterdam, in addition to an International Exchange Grant in Fine Arts with the School of Visual Arts in New York City. Van Brunschot has had solo exhibitions with Make Room, Los Angeles, MILK Gallery, Amsterdam and Inkijk, Amsterdam. Select group exhibitions include “Intersectionality”, Museum of Contemporary Art, Miami; “Fair.” Spinello Projects, Miami; “Fonte”, Galeria Logo, Brazil; and “Uncut” in De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam. She received the 2015 South Florida Cultural Consortium Fellowship and was artist-in-residence at Cannonball, Miami and AIRIE, Everglades. Most recently, van Brunschot’s It’s Like the River De Nile public artwork was exhibited at the Bass Museums “Temporary Contemporary” in Miami Beach. As a recipient of the 2017 International Artist Fellowship, she is currently completing an MFA at USC’s Roski School of Art and Design.
Artist, organizer, educator, and popular public speaker, Patrisse Cullors, is a Los Angeles native and Co-Founder of the Black Lives Matter Global Network and Founder of grassroots Los Angeles based organization Dignity and Power Now.
In 2013, Patrisse co-founded the global movement with the viral twitter hashtag #BlackLivesMatter which has since grown to an international organization with dozens of chapters around the world fighting anti-Black racism. If January 2016 Patrisse Cullors published her memoir, "When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir." Her memoir became an instant New York Times Bestseller,
Patrisse has been honored with various awards including: The Sydney Peace Prize Award ( 2017). Black Woman of the Year Award (2015) from The National Congress of Black Women, Civil Rights Leader for the 21st Century Award (2015) from the Los Angeles Times, Community Change Agent Award (2016) from BLACK GIRLSROCK!, Inc., Women of the Year Award for the Justice Seekers Award (2016) from Glamour, and ESSENCE first-ever Woke Award.
Patrisse is currently a 2019 MFA candidate at the University of Southern California.
Craig Gilmore is co-founder of California Prison Moratorium Project and former editor at Prison Focus. He has worked on prisons, police, and environmental justice campaigns since late in the last millennium. He has served on the advisory boards of A New Way of Life Reentry Project, Community Alternatives to Jail Expansion, The National Resource Center on Prisons and Communities and Critical Resistance, has been awarded grants as a Soros Justice Fellow and as a National Endowment of the Arts Interdisciplinary Artist, and was honored with the Ralph Santiago Abascal Award for Environmental Justice Activism in 2003. He has been a member of groups including the Central California Environmental Justice Network, Education not Incarceration, Californians United for a Responsible Budget (CURB), and Californians for Effective Public Safety. While his work is centered in California, he has consulted on campaigns against prisons or police in London, rural Oregon, Lisbon, western Massachusetts, Appalachia, rural Pennsylvania, New York, and Johannesburg.
Carlos Hagedorn, M.A.Carlos is a Xicano-Filipino teacher activist and has been a youth developer for the past 20 years, working with elementary, middle, high school and college students in San Francisco, New York City and the Napa Valley. Currently, he is a professor of Ethnic Studies at Napa Valley College and San Francisco State University. Carlos is the co-founder and Director of the LEGACY Youth Project, a 5th-12th grade youth program dedicated to supporting marginalized youth of the Napa Valley. He previously served as a board of trustee for the Napa Valley Unified School District and is a consultant in culturally responsive education. Carlos is a co-founder of the Napa Valley Ethnic Studies Advocates and Napa Valley Dream Team. He has engaged in extensive international solidarity work in Cuba, El Salvador and Venezuela. Carlos holds a B.A. in Raza Studies and an M.A. in Ethnic Studies from San Francisco State University.
Rachel Herzing, Ph.D. CandidateRachel Herzing is an organizer and educator. She is a co-founder of Critical Resistance, a national grassroots organization dedicated to abolishing the prison industrial complex. She has taught in university and adult education settings, been a grant maker, a health educator, and a researcher and organizer working on community-based interventions to violence. Rachel's writing has been featured in anthologies, academic journals, and magazine. She is also a frequent speaker and resource to advocates nationally and internationally on issues related to the prison industrial complex, community responses to interpersonal harm, and the impact of policing on communities of color. She is currently the co-director of the Center for Political Education, a resource for political education and social movements, the working class and people of color.
April Ruth Hoffman
April Ruth Hoffmann is a scholar-activist with a Ph.D. in Geography from the University of Southern California who has worked with dozens of nonprofit and grassroots organizations over the past 25 years as a volunteer, board member, program director, and project manager. Ruth is thrilled to be part of Prescott’s College’s Social Justice Community Organizing faculty, working with colleagues who are excited about their roles both inside the classroom and within the communities that their work impacts, as well as working with students who strive to be unique and engaging and who aim to find and implement solutions to society’s complex problems. Ruth has worked with entrepreneurs, nonprofits, grassroots groups, and businesses large and small. Her collaborative approach brings together organizations, local experts, and targeted donors to optimize results in terms of project timeliness, financial sustainability, and outcomes.
Aletha Dale McCullough, M.A.
Aletha Dale McCullough is a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago who currently lives on the island of Hawai’i. Aletha is an educator, writer and documentary filmmaker who is passionate about social justice for all living beings. Aletha's formal education includes a B.A. in Psychology and Women's Studies from San Diego State University; a post graduate teaching certificate for English Language Arts from the University of Hawai’i, Hilo; a Certificate in Documentary Filmmaking from Yavapai College and a M.A. in Social Justice and Community Organizing from Prescott College. Aletha's past documentary projects and writing addresses: food justice, Carnival, immigration, colonization and the First Peoples of the Caribbean. Aletha is currently working on a podcast series about social justice activists in Arizona, California and Hawaii.
Kaitlin Noss, Ph.D. Candidate
Kaitlin Noss received her BA from Prescott College ('05) in Pedagogies for Social Justice, her MA from the University of Toronto ('09) in Sociology and Equity Studies in Education, and is currently completing her PhD in American Studies at New York University. She was raised as a radical environmentalist, and is a grateful student of the Black radical tradition, Indigenous resistance history, and the prison abolition movement. Her work focuses on the relationships between race, capital, and land in the post-WWII era of US imperialism between Kenya and the US South. Since 2005, she has worked with the Maasai Community Partnership Project with PC faculty Mary Poole and Maasai leader Meitamei Olol Dapash—an international solidarity network undertaking research to support Indigenous land rights cases and monitor the practices of US and UK NGOs in East Africa. She lives in Brooklyn, NY with her dog Trotsky and some wonderful chosen family.
Cirien Saadeh, Ph.D. Candidate
Cirien Saadeh is a journalist, educator, community organizer, and doctoral student who works at the intersections of journalism, social movements, experiential education, and sustainability. Saadeh is an Arab-American woman of color who has worked as a journalist for nearly a decade and was trained as a community organizer by the former Organizing Apprenticeship Project (now Voices for Racial Justice). She has written for local, national, and international publications and is committed to using journalism as a tool in the pursuit of justice for all historically disenfranchised communities. Saadeh is an experienced food justice organizer, who has also organized around tenant rights, transit equity, and immigrant justice. As a Ph.D. student at Arizona’s Prescott College, Saadeh is developing “journalism of color,” a new type of journalism practice which includes a community-based journalism curriculum, as well as a cooperative journalism model.