Experts Available to Discuss Border Violence and Immigration Issues

May 5, 2010

AUSTIN, Texas — Experts at The University of Texas at Austin are available to discuss a host of topics relating to immigration reform and the border — from the rise in U.S.-Mexico border violence, to the consequences of Arizona's new immigration law.

Violence in Mexico and Along the Border

Ricardo Ainslie
Professor, Department of Educational Psychology
512-471-0364
rico.ainslie@mail.utexas.edu

Ainslie studies the effects of ethnic conflicts on communities and the psychological experiences of immigrants. He produced the documentary "Ya Basta! Kidnapped in Mexico," which investigates a wave of kidnappings and violent crime that has plagued Mexico during the past decade. He is available to discuss a range of topics pertaining to U.S.-Mexico border violence.

Cecilia Balli
Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology
512-471-8522
cballi@austin.utexas.edu

Balli's research focuses on the sexual murder of women in Ciudad Juárez, the construction of a border fence and the Mexican anti-drug campaign. She is an award-winning journalist with Texas Monthly magazine and is working on a book about the border fence in the Rio Grande Valley.

Héctor Domínguez Ruvalcaba
Associate Professor, Department of Spanish and Portuguese
512-471-2780
hectordominguez@mail.utexas.edu

Domínguez Ruvalcaba focuses his research on queer Latin American studies, gender violence in the U.S.-Mexico border and criminal organizations in Mexico. He is available to address concerns about gender-based violence in Juárez, the cultural and political aspects of the war against drug trafficking in northern Mexico and human rights issues in Mexico.

Robert M. Chesney
Professor, School of Law
512-232-1298
rchesney@law.utexas.edu

Chesney is a national security law specialist, with a particular interest in problems associated with terrorism and political violence. He is available to talk about violence related to drug-trafficking organizations in Mexico, including the impact of that issue on U.S. national security and foreign policy interests.

Families Left Behind in Mexico

Roy Germano
Doctoral Student, Department of Government
773-259-3844
rg@roygermano.com

Germano specializes in remittances migrant workers send back to Mexico and immigration issues. In 2009 he filmed "The Other Side of Immigration," a documentary featuring interviews with more than 700 family members left behind by U.S.-bound migrant workers. He is available to discuss Mexico's most crippling economic hardships, the country's vicious cycle of poverty spurred by a corrupt government and the social pressures on Mexicans to seek a better way of life.

Immigration Policy and Security

Jason Casellas (available for e-mail interviews only)
Assistant Professor, Department of Government
casellas@mail.utexas.edu

Casellas studies Latino politics, public policy, and state and local politics. His forthcoming book examines Latino representation in U.S. legislatures and Congress. He is available to speak about immigration reform broadly and how it affects Latino voter mobilization.

Terri Givens (available for e-mail interviews only)
Associate Professor, Department of Government
tgivens@mail.utexas.edu

Givens' interests include radical right parties, immigration politics, immigration and security, and immigrant integration in Europe. She is available to address a broad range of issues relating to immigration reform.

Gary Freeman
Chair, Department of Government
Professor, Department of Government
512-232-7260
gfreeman@austin.utexas.edu

Freeman specializes in the politics of immigration, comparative social policy and politics in western democracies. He examines how immigration has profoundly shaped the national development of countries. He can comment on an array of topics, including immigration policy and security, the economic effects of immigration, settlement issues, multiculturalism and conflict.

Veronica Vargas Stidvent
Director of the Center for Politics and Governance, Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs
512-471-2760
vstidvent@austin.utexas.edu

Stidvent is the former assistant secretary for policy for the U.S. Department of Labor. She is available to comment on immigration reform, job training and worker health and safety.

Peter Ward
Professor, Department of Sociology
C.B. Smith Sr. Centennial Chair in US-Mexico Relations
512-471-6302
peter.ward@mail.utexas.edu

Ward's research interests include Latin American urbanization, housing policy and planning, and welfare politics in Mexico City. He has advised the Mexican government and a number of international development agencies.

Health Care and Undocumented Immigrants

Jacqueline L. Angel
Professor of Sociology and Public Policy at the LBJ School of Public Affairs
512-471-2956
jangel@mail.utexas.edu

Angel focuses on evaluating the impact of policies on the health and well-being of Latinos, immigrants and other vulnerable groups. Angel is also a co-investigator on an National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Aging-funded benchmark study of the longitudinal health of older Mexican Americans in the Southwestern United States.

Immigration Legislation and Human Rights

Neil Foley
Associate Professor, Department of History
512-471-3261
nfoley@mail.utexas.edu

Foley examines the various strategies — legal, labor and political — Mexicans and blacks used to obtain equality in Texas and the Southwest around World War II. He is available to address concerns about civil rights issues regarding the Arizona immigration bill. He can also share insights into the social and political forces that drove immigration laws in the past, and how those laws have shaped immigration reform since then.

John McKiernan-González
Assistant Professor, Department of History
512-745-4245
tulua@mail.utexas.edu

McKiernan-González researches public health, civil rights and transnational social movements. His interests include American public health policies at the Mexican border, race and cross-border labor politics and Latino public history. He is available to discuss a range of topics relating to the Arizona law and its possible infringement of civil rights.

Angela Valenzuela
Associate Professor, Departments of Curriculum and Instruction and Educational Administration
512-232-6008
valenz@mail.utexas.edu

Valenzuela won a Fulbright scholarship in 2007 to work with the Mexican government and educational institutions to expand human rights and improve educational opportunities for Mexican immigrants to the United States. Last year she established the Texas Center for Education Policy. She is available to address a range of topics about immigration legislation and civil rights.

Ariel Dulitzky
Clinical Professor, Director of the Human Rights Clinic, and Director of the Latin America Initiative, School of Law
512-232-1256
adulitzky@law.utexas.edu

Dulitzky is a leading expert in the inter-American human rights system. From a human rights perspective, Dulitzky is available to talk about how the Arizona immigration law creates international problems for the federal government. He can also discuss how claims against the Arizona law could be brought in front of international bodies such as the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights or the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Denise Gilman
Clinical Professor, Immigration Clinic, School of Law
512-232-7796
dgilman@law.utexas.edu

Gilman teaches in the Immigration Clinic. She has written and practiced extensively in the international human rights and immigrants' rights fields.

Scot Powe
Professor, School of Law and Department of Government
512-232-1345
spowe@law.utexas.edu

Powe teaches constitutional law and is a leading historian of the Supreme Court. He is available to speak about the constitutionality of the Arizona immigration law.

Racial Profiling and Hispanic Assimilation

Martha Menchaca
Professor, Department of Anthropology
512-471-7537
mmen@mail.utexas.edu

Menchaca's areas of expertise include immigration and U.S.-Mexican culture. She can share commentary on underserved Latinos in the United States and the patterns of adaptation and adjustment of immigrant populations.

Barbara Hines
Clinical Professor and Director of the Immigration Clinic, School of Law
512-232-1310
bhines@law.utexas.edu

Hines has litigated and written about issues relating to the constitutional and statutory rights of immigrants in federal and immigration courts. She can address all aspects of immigration reform and the Arizona immigration law including racial profiling, preemption/constitutionality and the increased criminalization of the undocumented populations in the United States.

Immigration Reform and its Impact on Foreign Workers

Emilio Zamora
Professor, Department of History
512-475-8706
e.zamora@mail.utexas.edu

Zamora specializes in the history of Mexicans in the United States, U.S. labor history and 20th century Texas history. He has combined these three interests to produce extensive scholarship on Mexican workers in Texas in a transnational setting. Zamora can speak on this topic as well as on oral history, the history of Mexican immigration, Mexico-U.S. relations and selected topics related to the Latino experience in the 20th century.

Immigration Policies Around the World

Cynthia Buckley
Chair, Department of Slavic and Eurasian Studies
Associate Director, Center for Russian East European and Eurasian Studies
Associate Professor, Department of Sociology
512-471-3607
cbuckley@austin.utexas.edu

Buckley examines cross-country issues associated with the movement of people across borders. Her research areas include security issues related to Eurasian migration and the Russian Federation's role as a migrant destination state. She can provide commentary on the politics of immigration in Europe, Asia and the United States.

Madeline Hsu
Associate Professor, Department of History
Director, Center for Asian American Studies
512-232-9463
myhsu@mail.utexas.edu

Hsu's research focuses on Chinese migration, particularly between China and North America. Her research explores the intersection between immigration law and U.S. foreign policy, focusing on shifting attitudes toward Asian migration during the Cold War era. She is available to discuss the parallels between early Asian and contemporary Mexican immigrants in the United States.

Drug Trafficking in Art and Literature

Gabriela Polit-Dueñas
Assistant Professor, Department of Spanish and Portuguese
512-232-4539
gabriela@austin.utexas.edu

Polit-Dueñas studies the representation of drug trafficking in literary works from such cities as Culican, Mexico; Medellin, Colombia; and La Paz, Bolivia. She is available to comment on artists' representations of the effects of narcotic culture in their works.

For more information, contact: Jessica Sinn, College of Liberal Arts, 512-471-2404.