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News Release


College of Ethnic Studies announces Examplary Leadership Awards

Physicians, teachers and artists top the list


SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 29, 2010 -- San Francisco State University's College of Ethnic Studies will honor four individuals and a collective who have championed the field of ethnic studies and served diverse communities. The awards mark National Ethnic Studies Week, Oct. 1 - 7.

An Oakland physician who responded to the Haiti earthquake; a student who helped to found a clinic to treat the uninsured; a teacher who championed bilingual education in San Francisco schools; a Native American veterinarian, teacher and tribal elder; and an Oakland art collective whose work gives voice to marginalized people will receive the 2010 Exemplary Leadership Awards.

The awards are given annually to recognize SF State faculty, alumni and others who have contributed significantly to the College of Ethnic Studies, the field of ethnic studies or have demonstrated exemplary leadership in service to diverse communities. Awardees are nominated and selected by College of Ethnic Studies faculty. Past recipients of the award include: actor, activist and SF State alum Danny Glover and former College of Ethnic Studies faculty Nathan Hare, Jim Hirabayashi, Ana Montes and Elizabeth Parent.

The Oct. 3 ceremony will be held at Medjool Restaurant, 2522 Mission St. in San Francisco and will begin with a reception at noon, honoring faculty who have recently retired from the College of Ethnic Studies. These are: Danilo Begonia, Rafael Diaz, Jose Cuellar, Robert Fung, Wade Nobles, Theophile Obenga and Oba T'Shanka.

"Each of the people we are honoring is a brilliant example of the kind of leadership that is not only about individual contribution, it's about working collectively to reach a broader community to make a stronger society," said Kenneth Monteiro, dean of the College of Ethnic Studies. "They are champions of social justice." The awardees are:

Laureen Chew, Ed.D.
Associate Dean, College of Ethnic Studies, equal access for education activist
A San Francisco Chinatown native and daughter of an American-born father and immigrant mother, Laureen Chew, Ed.D., was an undergraduate student at SF State when she was jailed with other students during the 1968 campus strike. As a teacher in the San Francisco Unified School District, she and other activists championed bilingual education in public schools. After returning to SF State to teach, Chew became the first Chinese American woman to chair the elementary education department and was the first female tenured faculty in Asian American studies. She is also the first woman to be appointed associate dean of the College of Ethnic Studies. She is admired by colleagues and students for her leadership in the movement to make ethnic studies a reality in public schools and her continued efforts to ensure that higher education is accessible to everyone who seeks it.

Bernard A. Hoehner, D.V.M. (Posthumous)
Veterinarian and American Indian Studies faculty member
Born and raised on the Standing Rock Reservation in South Dakota, Bernard Hoehner, D.V.M., a respected Lakota elder, was the first American Indian to earn a doctorate in veterinary medicine. A veteran of World War II, he remained active in American Indian cultural affairs while building his own veterinary practice, for which he was named the Northern California Indian Businessman of the Year. Dr. Hoehner served as an American Indian culture and traditions consultant for museums, television shows and the California legislature. He produced "Hymns in Lakota," an audio compilation of Western church hymns sung in the Lakota language and founded the Blue Horse Singers drum group, which continues today. Dr. Hoehner joined the faculty of American Indian Studies in 1970, where he taught Native American dance, music, language, earth science and religion until his passing in 1995.

Evelyn Carolina Monico, M.D.
Physician, co-founder of Clínica Martín-Baró
Evelyn Carolina Monico, M.D., immigrated to the United States from El Salvador at age 10. As an SF State biology and Raza student she envisioned a Mission District community clinic that would serve people who struggled with serious health conditions, but could not afford health insurance. In 2007, Dr. Monico, a fellow medical student and faculty from SF State and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), opened the doors to Clínica Martín-Baró, which is staffed by UCSF medical students and faculty and SF State Raza students. The Clínica has already attracted more than 500 patients. SF State students manage the Saturday clinic, conduct community health education programs and lead the grassroots funding that makes up to 99 percent of the Clínica's budget. Many of these students have followed in Dr. Monico's footsteps and have entered medical school. Dr. Monico is currently in residency at the University of California, Davis Medical Center.

Ramona Tascoe, M.D.
Physician, ordained minister and international activist
Recently appointed U.S. Director of Health for the Kimbanguist Church of Congo, Ramona Tascoe, M.D., has led medical missions to Kenya, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola, India, Sri Lanka and most recently Port-au-Prince, Haiti, where she was asked by the International Medical Corps to oversee the work of U.S. doctors and nurses providing medical relief in Haiti's largest public hospital. A recipient of the Jefferson Award for Public Service, Dr. Tascoe provides public education programs that focus on political, social and economic factors that influence prevention and management of diseases, including HIV/AIDS. As an undergraduate at SF State, Dr. Tascoe was a member of the Black Student Union, which conducted the 1968 strike to hire more black professors and create the College of Ethnic Studies. A member of the SF State class of 1970, the Oakland
resident earned a doctorate in medicine from the University of California, San Francisco, and a Master of Divinity degree from the American Baptist Seminary of the West at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. She holds a master's in health services administration from the University of San Francisco.

Dignidad Rebelde Graphic Art Collective
Jesus Barraza and Melanie Cervantes, artists and founders
Based in Oakland, the collective creates prints and posters intended to empower marginalized communities. The collective's iconic images, which are created to give voice to social or political conflict, dominated the 2010 public protests over the verdict in the trial of the BART police officer who shot and killed Oscar Grant. The collective's work has also supported opposition to Arizona's new law, which requires law enforcement officers to question anyone thought to be an illegal immigrant. Barraza began his career as a freelance graphic designer when he was still an undergraduate at SF State. Cervantes' work has been exhibited internationally and is part of many private and museum collections, including the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago, the Center for Study of Political Graphics, and the Latin America Collection of the Green Library at Stanford University.

San Francisco State University's College of Ethnic Studies is the only college in the country devoted to the discipline. It was founded in response to the 1968 SF State student strike when faculty, students and staff demanded the establishment of the disciplines offered by the college today, including the departments of Africana, American Indian, Asian American and Raza Studies. This semester, more than 6,000 students are taking ethnic studies classes. The College is also home to the Race and Resistance Studies Program; the Arab, Muslim Ethnicities and Diaspora Initiative; and the Cesar Chavez Institute for community-based participatory research in educational and health equity.



NOTE:  Media planning to attend the event must contact Denize Springer no later than 5 p.m., Friday, Oct. 1, for press credentials. Call (415) 405-3803 or e-mail denize@sfsu.edu.

For more information on National Ethnic Studies Week visit http://ethnicstudiesweekoctober1-7.org/index.html

Read Dean Monteiro's editorial on ethnic studies in the Chronicle of Higher Education at  http://chronicle.com/article/Who-Gets-to-Define-Ethnic/66093/



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