Judith Strathearn, Ph.D., is a lecturer in the Gender and Women’s Studies Department and an affiliate professor in the Africana Studies Department at Metropolitan State University of Denver. Her areas of expertise include black feminism, experiential pedagogy, literature of the African Diaspora and Gullah Geechee studies.
Topic: African American/Black
Devon Wright, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Africana Studies and the Department of Sociology at Metropolitan State University of Denver. His areas of expertise include Black social movements, conservative right-wing social movements, white-supremacist ideology and racist rhetoric in conservative right-wing media organizations and the politics of hip-hop culture. Wright currently teaches Politics and Black People, Social Movements and the Black Experience, and Black Lives Matter and COVID-19.
Prior to joining MSU Denver, Wright taught as a social-sciences instructor at Fort Lauderdale High School. Wright has been asked to speak on various topics, including the history of black social-protest movements, the Black Lives Matter Movement, white-supremacist hate groups such as the Ku Klux Klan and the segregationist Citizen’s Councils of America and hip-hop culture.
He received his doctorate in Sociology and master’s and bachelor’s degrees in History, all from Florida International University.
JaLisa Williams is a BSSW lecturer in the Department of Social Work at Metropolitan State University of Denver. Her areas of expertise include mindfulness interventions for race-based trauma, black generational healing, yoga, social justice and radical pedagogies.
Williams joined MSU Denver in 2019, first as an affiliate professor and taught a variety of courses in the BSSW and MSW program. Her classes taught included creative approach to change, gender and social work as well as power, privilege and oppression. Williams also served as an affiliate professor for Regis University where she developed two innovative curriculums under the Integrative Core Department.
She is the owner for Soulflower Experiences, which is a community-based mindfulness business teaching workshops, yoga and meditation classes. She also worked as a yoga therapist and counselor for The Center for Trauma and Resilience. There she provided short term counseling for individuals who have experienced crime in Denver, provided crisis intervention and client advocacy as well as presented and co-facilitated classes for the Befriending the Body yoga program.
Williams was a violence prevention program coordinator where she led, created and facilitated programing around interpersonal violence, healthy relationships, and violence against women and gender fluid individuals. Williams received her bachelor’s in kinesiology and exercise science in 2013 and her master’s in social work in 2016 from the Metropolitan State University of Denver.
Alfred Tatum, Ph.D., is the provost and executive vice President of Academic Affairs and professor in the School of Education at Metropolitan State University of Denver. He has over 18 years of higher education experience and is passionate about relationship building and inclusive leadership. He is a leading authority and one of the nation’s prominent education scholars of African American boys’ literacy development.
Tatum currently oversees academic activities throughout MSU Denver, with direct responsibility for developing, delivering and evaluating academic program policies and procedures. He is also responsible for the promotion, tenure, retention processes as well as other faculty related plans within the university.
Prior to becoming provost at MSU Denver, Tatum was the dean of the College of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago from 2013-2020 and directed the UIC Reading Clinic from 2007-2020. Also during that time, he hosted Boys College for three years aimed to advance the literacy development of Black boys in elementary school. Additionally, he led two Post-Release Education and Preparation projects for young men on intensive probation with Cook County after convincing the juvenile court judges to assign the young males to the UIC Reading Clinic instead of jail. Tatum’s most recent research project, focused on the roles of texts and writing to advance the literacy development of African American males in elementary school. His most recent scholarship focuses on moving U.S. students to advanced levels of reading, writing and intellect development across the academic disciplines.
Tatum has co-authored three books, four major reading and writing programs and 77 academic papers and publications. He authored the award-winning book, “Teaching Reading to Black Adolescent Males: Closing the Achievement Gap” in 2005. His second book, “Reading for Their Life: (Re) building the Textual Lineages of African American Males” was published in 2009. His third book, “Fearless Voices: Engaging a New Generation of African American Adolescent Male Writers” was published in 2013. A fourth book, “Teaching Black Boys in the Elementary Grades” is scheduled to be released by Teachers College Press in November 2021.
Tatum received his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois Chicago and his bachelor’s degree from Northern Illinois University.
Robert Preuhs, Ph.D, is a professor and chair of the Political Science Department at Metropolitan State University of Denver. He currently teaches democracy: U.S. and Third World, conducting political analysis and applied political research lab.
Preuhs has been teaching political science at the college level for nearly 20 years. He held positions at the University of Denver and the University of Colorado as lecturer, affiliate faculty and instructor before coming to MSU Denver in 2007. Preuhs was also the associate director of the Social Science Data Laboratory at the University of Colorado from 2004 to 2006. He has received numerous awards, including the Award for Excellence in Research and Creative Work by the University of Colorado Graduate School in 2001 and Best Book on Latino Politics, awarded by the Latino Caucus of the American Political Science Association in 2014.
His main research areas focus on issues of representation and democracy through the lens of racial and ethnic politics, state and national politics, public policy and administration. Preuhs has published in academic journals including the Journal of Politics, Political Research Quarterly, American Politics Quarterly and Social Science Quarterly. He also co-authored the book “Black-Latino Relations in U.S. National Politics: Beyond Conflict or Cooperation” in 2013, the first study of minority intergroup relations at the national level.
Preuhs received his doctorate in American politics, methodology and public policy and a master’s in political science from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2001 and 1999, respectively. He also earned a master’s in public administration from the University of New Mexico in 1996 and a bachelor’s in political science and international studies from Hamline University, cum laude, in 1992.
Douglas Mpondi is a professor and chair of the Department of Africana Studies at Metropolitan State University of Denver where he teaches African Politics and Government, African History, African Peoples and Cultures and Research Methods in Africana Studies. He earned his Ph.D. in Cultural Studies and M.A. in African Studies at Ohio University. Mpondi has a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Arts in African Languages and Literature from the University of Zimbabwe. Mpondi has taught a course on South Africa which focused on Nelson Mandela and his iconic contribution to the anti-apartheid struggle. He has previously taught at The University of Michigan-Flint, Southern Connecticut State University, Ohio University and the University of Zimbabwe. His publications include the politics of citizenship in Zimbabwe and Southern Africa, the impact of globalization on Africa, and the politics of educational transition in Zimbabwe. Mpondi’s research interests are: African politics, culture and education; democratic transitions and development in Southern Africa; African political economy; and African conflicts and conflict resolutions in Africa.
Katia Campbell, Ph.D., is the chair in the Department of Communication Studies at Metropolitan State University of Denver.
Her scholarship and teaching focuses on rhetoric, free speech, cultural representation, popular media and critical pedagogy. Campbell is also the Faculty Senate President. Outside of MSU Denver, she consults and facilitates workshops on communication and diversity, media literacy, free speech, public speaking, and dialogic ethics. After completing her doctorate, Campbell worked as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Communication at University of Colorado Denver.
Her research areas of interest include, but are not limited to, citizenship and civic engagement, cultural diversity and communication within a U.S. cultural context and cultural studies with an emphasis on media studies. Campbell has co-authored three publications in the areas of civic engagement and social justice. Her book, “Neo-Pragmatism, Communication, and the Culture of Creative Democracy,” focuses specifically on the malleable conceptions of citizenship and civic responsibility and explicates the possible social ramifications of our modern practice of citizenship.
Campbell earned her doctorate in human communication studies from University of Denver in 2004.
Rosemarie Allen, Ed.D., is an associate professor of Early Childhood Education. She began teaching at MSU Denver in 2004.
Her research interests are related to addressing the disproportionate number of children of color expelled and suspended from early childhood programs and how culturally responsive teaching can more effectively address the problem. She was appointed as a Global Leader for Early Childhood in 2009 and represents the United States biannually at World Forums across the globe.
Allen has also served as director of the Colorado Department of Human Services, Division of Child Care, for five years. During her tenure, she worked with state and national leaders to create programs that became nationwide models. The Center for Social Emotional Competence (Pyramid Plus) was created, quality measures were added to early childhood rules and regulations, a statewide quality rating system for all licensed programs was initiated, early childhood guidelines aligned with Colorado Department of Education standards were developed, and the Professional Development blueprint was formed, building the foundation for Colorado to receive a 45 million dollar Race to the Top Early Childhood Challenge grant in 2011.
Allen consults with early childhood leaders on culturally responsive practices, micro-aggressions and facing personal bias and privilege. She currently serves on the National Pyramid Model Consortium team, has served on the Board of the National Association for Regulatory Agencies, the Mayor’s Commission on Early Childhood, the Early Childhood Professional Development Task Force and many governor and mayoral commissions.