Jasmine Garsd

Jasmine Garsd is co-host (along with Felix Contreras) of NPR’s Alt.Latino, a program covering Latin alternative music, from electronic and hip-hop to rock and salsa. Garsd says she “grew up on a steady diet of Argentine rock” as a teen in Buenos Aires, and now brings a fresh eye to the constantly changing Latino music scene.

Jasmine Garsd
Co-Host, NPR’s Alt.Latino

Areas of Expertise: Latin Music and Musicians

Location: Washington, D.C.

Contact Information:
Email: jgarsd@npr.org
Twitter: @jasgarsd

Heard on NPR: For a full list, click here.

Tell Me More: Armando Perez, aka Pit Bull, Up For Latin Billboard


Last Verified: May 2015

María Pabón López

María Pabón López brings a range of academic and professional legal experience to her role as Dean and Professor of Law at the Loyola New Orleans College of Law. Prior to joining the college in 2011, Lopez spent ten years at Indiana University’s McKinney School of Law as an assistant, associate and full professor of law and three years as a lecturer at the University of Missouri – Columbia School of Law. That follows a distinguished decade-long professional career working in federal courts, private practices and non-profit organizations in her home of Puerto Rico and throughout the United States.

López is an expert in immigrants’ rights (including the education of immigrant children), immigration law and diversity/multicultural matters in the legal profession. She also focuses her research on issues concerning Latinos, race and the law, and the status of women lawyers. López has published widely and currently serves on the Diversity Committee of the Louisiana State Bar Association and on the board of the Louisiana Supreme Court Historical Society.

Her current research is on women in the law in Louisiana.

Maria Pabon Lopez

Dean and Professor of Law at the Loyola New Orleans College of Law

Areas of Expertise: Immigration Law, Diversity and the Law, Legal Education, Family Law, Trusts and Estates, and Criminal Law

Location: New Orleans, LA

Contact Information:

Shaneil S. Achord, López’s Executive Assistant
Phone: (504) 861-5847
Email: achord@loyno.edu

Heard on Louisiana Talk Show “John Redmann: Power of Attorney”: Women & Minorities as Leaders in the World of Law

Added March 2015

Maria Eugenia Trillo

Maria Eugenia Trillo, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Spanish at Western New Mexico University. Her studies focus on the use of Spanish in the United States and how language and identity function together.

Trillo’s research specifically looks at how heritage, native, and second language Spanish speakers create and represent the identity of Latino, Hispanic, and Chicano culture in the United States. Her work bridges linguistics and social sciences, and takes a look at Code Switching as a form of language retention and revival mechanism for many Spanish speakers (also see NPR’s Gene Demby’s ‘How Code Switching Explains the World’).

Trillo has been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered and in a New Yorker piece by Paul Kramer.


Sociolinguist and Associate Professor of Spanish, Western New Mexico University

Areas of Expertise: Education, Linguistics, Bilingualism, Spanish Language, Chicano and Latin American Literature, Code Switching

Location: Silver City, NM

Contact Information:

Email: trillom@wnmu.edu; trillomariae@gmail.com
Phone: (575) 538-6526

Heard on New Mexico State University’s KRWG: Spanish: Past, Present, and Future

Luis Zayas

Luis Zayas has been the dean of the School of Social Work at the University of Texas at Austin since 2012. Previously he was the inaugural Shanti K. Khinduka Distinguished Professor of Social Work and Professor of Psychiatry at Washington University in St. Louis.

His work and research focus on diagnostic processes, suicide attempts of young Latinas, and adapting interventions for Latino children, youth and families.

Zayas has spoken to Maria Hinojosa on Latino USA and was a featured educator on WAMC’s The Academic Minute, where he discussed Latina suicide rates.

Dean of the School of Social Work, University of Texas at Austin

Areas of Expertise: Mental Health, Social Policy, Diagnostic Processes, Suicide Attempts of Young Latinas, Mental Health Intervention, Latino Families

Location: Austin, TX

Contact Information:
Email: lzayas@austin.utexas.edu
Phone: (512) 471-1937

Or, contact Andrea Campetella, Director of Communications and Planning

Email: campetella@austin.utexas.edu
Phone: (512) 471-1458

Heard on Latino USA:
Dr. Luis Zayas


Gabriela Rivera

Gabriela Rivera is the Yale Public Interest Fellow with the ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties. As an attorney with the ACLU her work focuses on addressing due process violations in immigration detention, discriminatory policing practices, and abuses of local police partnerships with federal immigration enforcement authorities.

Gabriela is one of the lead attorneys on a class action lawsuit filed in federal court in Los Angeles in June 2013, challenging the methods of coercion and pressure that Border Patrol and ICE agents employ to convince Mexican nationals to sign their own expulsion orders.

Prior to the ACLU she worked with the Federal Defenders, the Yale Law School Reentry Clinic and the Criminal Defense Project, where she focused on mitigating collateral consequences and immigration consequences of criminal convictions.

Legal Fellow/Staff Attorney at ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties

Areas of Expertise: Constitutional and Administrative Law, Immigrant Rights, Racial Justice, Police Practices, Criminal Justice, Economic Justice, Immigration Law, International Human Rights Law

Location: San Diego, CA

Contact Information:
Phone: (619) 398-4495

Rivera speaks about immigration for the ACLU: 


Victoria DeFrancesco Soto

Victoria DeFrancesco Soto is a senior analyst at Latino Decisions, a Latino polling firm.

She is also a fellow at the Center for Politics and Governance at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas, Austin, and a senior fellow at the Bernard Center for Women, Politics, and Public Policy. According to her Bernard Center bio, she is currently working on a book about conservative feminism. She previously taught political science at Northwestern University and Rutgers University.

DeFrancesco Soto is a regular contributor to MSNBC and Telemundo. She blogs for NBC Latino, the Huffington Post, and POLITICO’s Arena.

Fellow at the Center for Politics and Governance at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas

Areas of Expertise: Social Identity and Political Behavior, Latino Politics, Women, Race and Ethnic Politics, Immigration, Campaigns and Elections, Political Marketing

Location: Austin, TX

Contact Information:
Mobile: (312) 480-1868
Twitter: @drvmds

Heard on NPR: For a complete list, click here.

All Things Considered: In Presidential Ads, A Shared Strategy For Connection

Weekend Edition Saturday: Campaign Ads Target Latinos As A Key Issue Looms


Cristina Rodriguez

Cristina Rodriguez teaches constitutional law, administrative law, and immigration law at Yale Law School. She is the first tenured Latino faculty member. She earned both her B.A. and J.D. at Yale and was previously a professor at NYU School of Law. From January 2011 to January 2013, Rodriguez worked in the Office of Legal Counsel in the U.S. Department of Justice as Deputy Assistant Attorney General.

Dean Robert Post of Yale Law School describes Rodriguez as “the nation’s leading theorist of immigration law.” She has written about immigration policy, civil rights and migration for The New York Times, CNN and numerous other publications.

According to her bio, Rodriguez attended Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar. She clerked for Justice Sandra Day O’Connor of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge David S. Tatel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Professor of Law, Yale Law School

Areas of Expertise: Immigration, Immigration Law and Policy, Constitutional Law, Administrative Law, the Supreme Court, Executive Branch, Effects of Immigration on Society and Culture, Language Rights and Policy, Migration, Civil Rights & Citizenship

Location: New Haven, CT

Contact Information:
Email: cristina.rodriguez@yale.edu

Heard on NPR: For a complete list, click here.

All Things Considered: What’s Different Today For Ariz. Illegal Immigrants?

Tell Me More: More States Expected To Introduce Anti-Illegal Immigration Laws


Claudia Galindo

Sociologist Claudia Galindo spoke to NPR’s Claudio Sanchez about the academic shortcomings of Latino children compared to their white counterparts. Galindo was part of a team of researchers that studied Latino parents and how they prepare their kids for school.

“We found that Latino kids bring to school strong emotional skills and strong social skills, which means they know how to share with their peers. They know how to follow instructions. They know how to listen. And…these kids are being raised in very supportive and warm family environments.“

In addition to her interdisciplinary research, Galindo teaches courses on inequality in education and immigration at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Center for Social Organization of Schools, Johns Hopkins University, with the National Network of Partnership Schools (NNPS), and she co-authored the book Multicultural Partnerships: Involve All Families.

Galindo has a Ph.D in Education Policy and Comparative International Education from Pennsylvania State University.

Claudia Galindo

Associate Professor of Language, Literacy, and Culture at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Areas of Expertise: Educational inequality, Educational Policy & Reform, Family, School &Community Partnerships, Latino Education, Education, Immigration 

Location: Baltimore, MD
Contact Info:

Phone: (814) 876-0683
Email: galindo@umbc.edu

Heard on NPR: For a complete list, click here.

All Things Considered: Study: Latino Children Make Up For Academic Shortcomings With Strong Social Skills

Added January 2013

Last Verified September 2015

Veronica Vargas Stidvent

Veronica (Ronnye) Vargas Stidvent can speak about political and policy trends in the Hispanic community, She is the chancellor of WGU Texas, but most recently served as President of CEA Consulting, LLC and was a lecturer at The University of Texas at Austin McCombs School of Business. In 2016, Stidvent was appointed to the State of Texas Governor’s Advisory Council on Cultural Affairs.

After receiving a bachelor’s degree from UT and a law degree from Yale, Stidvent went on to serve as President George W. Bush’s special assistant for policy. She has also worked as assistant secretary for policy at the U.S. Department of Labor and as a policy advisor in the Office of Managements and Budget’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs.

Chancellor of Western Governors University (WGU) Texas

Areas of Expertise: Immigration Policy and Reform, Latino Politics, Law, Business, Hispanic Culture and Identity, Hispanic Leadership

Location: Austin, TX

Contact Information:
(512) 673-3878

Heard on NPR: For a complete list, click here.

Tell Me More: Latinos Fuel More Than Half The U.S. Population Growth

Heard on KUT:


Laura Donnelly Gonzalez

Laura Donnelly Gonzalez, founder and COO of Latinitas, a digital magazine empowering Latina youth through media and technology, told KUT she wants to teach young Latinas to replace negative media representations of Hispanic women with their own visions of success.

“You ask a 9 year-old Latina girl, she knows that she is not officially represented in media….She often sees herself portrayed very negatively or overly sexualized. And so we are trying to instill in these girls the ability and the capacity to shift these images herself.”

Through her work with Latinitas, Gonzalez hosted the first “TechChica” social technology conference in Austin in October 2012. TechChica is a series of social media workshops for Latinas aged 9 to 18.

Gonzalez was previously a book publicist in New York City and worked with authors such as Maya Angelou and former President Jimmy Carter.

COO and Co-Founder of Latinitas Magazine

Areas of Expertise: Latina Youth, Latinas, Media, Technology, Social Networking

Location: Austin, TX

Contact Information:
Phone: (512) 809-4618


Heard on KUT: