Lisa EdwardsLisa M. Edwards, Co-Director

Dr. Lisa M. Edwards is an Associate Professor in the department of Counselor Education and Counseling Psychology at Marquette University. She received her masters and doctoral degrees in Counseling Psychology from the University of Kansas, and was a postdoctoral research associate in the Department of Psychology at the University of Notre Dame. In her current position, Dr. Edwards is the Director of Counselor Education and teaches courses in multicultural counseling, group counseling, assessment, and supervision. She directs the Culture and Well-Being Research Lab and is a licensed psychologist in the state of Wisconsin. Dr. Edwards’ research focuses on strengths and positive functioning among ethnic minority youth and adults. Specifically, she investigates how cultural variables such as familism, religiosity, and ethnic identity influence well-being among Latino/as and multiracial populations.

Bianca Bello Bianca Bello

Bianca Bello is a Program Coordinator for the Hispanic/Latino Urban Outreach for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee. She is responsible for the program titled, Señoritas en Acción or Young Girls in Action which is a multicultural and multiracial empowerment and leadership group for young ladies grades 5th - high school. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a Chicano/a Latino/a Studies Certificate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is fluent in Spanish and was born and raised in Milwaukee’s Southside. She is a recent graduate of the Latino Nonprofit Leadership Program Class 11 offered through the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She enjoys working with youth of all backgrounds and plans to attain a Master’s degree in the near future.

Pilar BellverPilar Bellver

Dr. Pilar Bellver has a B.A. in English from the University of Valencia, Spain, and a doctorate in Hispanic Literatures and Cultural Studies from the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to coming to Marquette she worked as a lecturer at the University of Texas in Austin, and as Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The literary and cultural areas of contact between the US and Latin American fascinate her. Her dissertation and first publications focused on first-person narratives by US Latina writers and discussed the different ways in which first and second generation writers go beyond the boundaries of the traditional autobiographical form by exploring the individual’s identity in relation to the community. More recently, she has become interested in US/Mexico border literature and culture.  Her research examines the ways in which Mexican writers and artists turn the description of the more remote and desert landscapes of the region into a reflection on cultural identity within the framework of Mexican national discourse. In the Foreign Languages Department at Marquette she regularly teaches courses on US Latino/a literature, US/Mexico border literature and film, and contemporary Latin American literature and culture.

Mark CaballeroMark Caballero

Mark Caballero finished his undergraduate degree in exercise physiology in 2014. Shortly after, he took on his current role of teaching laboratory coordinator for the Program in Exercise Science in Marquette University’s Department of Physical Therapy. After his junior year, as part of an Accelerated Degree Program, Mark also started working on his M.S. in Clinical and Translational Rehabilitation Science specifically focusing on the Hispanic population in Milwaukee’s south side at the United Community Center (UCC). Specifically, during his undergraduate studies he started volunteering and then later worked for the Youth Empowered to Succeed (YES) program after being awarded a graduate assistantship.  YES is a community intervention funded by the Office of Minority Health for at-risk—low GPA and overweight/obese—Hispanic youth. This is a collaboration between Marquette University’s Physical Therapy department and the UCC. Mark's current research interests include aerobic exercise intervention programs such as triathlon (swimming, biking, and running) as a mode of rehabilitation to safely train overweight and obese youth into a healthy weight status. He is both a USA Triathlon certified level 1 and Youth & Junior coach. His future research may include sports performance in youth and adults.

America DavilaAmerica Davila

America is a junior in the college of Arts and Sciences and double majoring in psychology and criminology & law studies. She is currently an Urban and McNair Scholar and a member of the Criminology & Law Study society, Youth Empowered in the Struggle, and the Animal Health and Wellness Club of Marquette University. After graduation she plans to pursue a doctoral degree in either clinical or counseling psychology. Her research interests include intimate partner violence, child abuse, adolescence, and discrimination with a focus on ethnic minority mental health. Experience with research includes being part of Dr. Torres lab since 2014. She has also worked with Dr. Grych on a research project for the Ronald E. McNair program titled Breaking the Cycle: An Examination of Cognitive, Emotional, and Environmental Factors of Intimate Partner Violence Victimization in Adolescence.

Alyson C. GerdesAlyson C. Gerdes

Dr. Gerdes’ research involves both basic and applied work that serves to inform and guide clinicians when treating childhood ADHD. Primary research interests include examining evidence-based assessment and treatment of childhood ADHD, culturally-appropriate clinical practices and Latino mental health disparities, and parent-child and peer relationships of youth with ADHD. Recent culturally-relevant projects include determining best recruitment practices for Latino families, translating and establishing the psychometric properties of Spanish-versions of commonly-used assessment and treatment outcome measures, examining Latino parental perceptions about ADHD and the role of culture in parental problem recognition and motivation to seek help for ADHD, and developing and validating a culturally-appropriate measure of functional impairment for ADHD. Funding from the Russell and Betty Jane Shaw Fund of the Greater Milwaukee Foundation recently supported a study aimed at developing and piloting a culturally-adapted, evidence-based ADHD treatment for Latino families. Funding from the National Institutes of Health is currently supporting a study aimed at comparing treatment outcomes from the culturally-adapted treatment to standard treatment.

Cesar GonzalezCesar D. Gonzalez

Cesar D. Gonzalez received his C.D. degree from the School of Stomatology, Universidad de San Luis Potosi in Mexico in 1983. He then obtained his M.S. degree and certificate in Pediatric Dentistry at the University of Minnesota in 1988. Dr. Gonzalez joined the faculty in the Division of Pediatric Dentistry at Marquette University School of Dentistry in 1989 as an Assistant Professor. He became an Associate Professor in 1997 and has been the Director of the Undergraduate Program in Pediatric Dentistry since 1998. Dr. Gonzalez enjoys being part of community programs aimed at helping children locally or abroad and has participated in volunteer programs in Bolivia, Honduras, Guatemala, and in the Republic of Georgia. In July 2007 he received a Presidential Award by the United States Agency for International Development for volunteer work in the Republic of Georgia.

Kristin HaglundKristin Haglund

Kristin Haglund, Ph.D. is an associate professor in the College of Nursing at Marquette University. She earned a Ph.D. in Nursing from University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. She is a nurse practitioner certified in pediatrics and family practice.  Her research focuses on generation of knowledge and interventions to facilitate optimal health and psychosocial outcomes for children and adolescents at risk due to poverty, discrimination and/ or chronic illness.  She has conducted research with Latino and Latina adolescents regarding healthy interpersonal relationships and prevention of dating violence.  Other research projects have focused on sexual risk reduction, religiosity and spirituality among adolescents and improving health of chronically ill children.

Image exampleLucas Torres, Co-Director

Lucas Torres, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the Psychology Department at Marquette University.  Generally speaking, his research interests have involved examining the issues surrounding mental health disparities.  This research agenda entails determining the internal attributes, namely intercultural competence and coping, the sociocultural factors, such as acculturation and ethnic identity, and the stressors, including acculturative stress and daily discrimination-related events, which influence experiencing depressive symptomatology among Latino adults.  Dr. Torres received his doctoral degree in clinical psychology from Purdue University and completed a Multicultural Post-doctoral Research Fellowship at the University of Notre Dame.  Prior to his post-doctoral position, Dr. Torres received clinical training at the Center for Multicultural Training in Psychology, through the Boston University Medical Center, and the Massachusetts Mental Health Center. 

Angelique HarrisAngelique Harris

Angelique Harris is Assistant Professor of Sociology in the Department of Social and Cultural Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences at Marquette University. Her research and teaching interests include the sociology of health and illness, race and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, sociology of religion, urban studies, immigration/migration, media studies, and social movements. Dr. Harris’ research program examines how women, people of color, and LGBTQ people understand and construct social problems as well as how the marginalization and stigmatization they experience impact their access to resources. 

Fr. Jeffrey LaBelleRev. Jeffrey T. LaBelle, S.J.

Father LaBelle is currently an assistant professor at Marquette University’s College of Education as well as rector of the Jesuit Community here at Marquette University. Prior to coming to Milwaukee, he served as assistant professor of education at the University of San Francisco. Fr. LaBelle holds a BA in InterAmerican Studies with emphasis in Spanish and ESL from University of the Pacific, Master of Divinity and Master of Theology degrees from the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley, and an Ed.D. in International and Multicultural Education from the University of San Francisco. From 1988-2000, Fr. LaBelle served in two Catholic parishes in San José, St. Joseph Cathedral and Most Holy Trinity, where he was involved in extensive pastoral work among immigrants from Latin America, Vietnam, and the Philippines. In collaboration with Frs. Gerald O’Collins, S.J., and Daniel Kendall, S.J., he has co-edited Pope John Paul II: A Reader (Paulist, 2007) as well as Seek God Everywhere: Reflections on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius (Doubleday, 2010). He co-authored Being Catholic in a Changing World (Paulist, 2009) also with Daniel Kendall, S.J. He recently published another book with Daniel Kendall, S.J., Catholic Colleges in the 21st Century: A Road Map for Campus Ministry (Paulist) which was released in 2011.

Amanda RamirezAmanda C. Ramirez

Amanda C. Ramírez was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico and moved to Milwaukee, WI 4 years ago due to educational purposes. She graduated from Marquette University with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Health Studies. Currently, she is a first year graduate student in the Department of Counselor Education and Counseling Psychology at Marquette University pursuing a Masters degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with a Child and Adolescent specialization. Since she moved to Milwaukee she has being part of the Milwaukee community by participating through observation, education, research. She has being working with the infant and youth population for several years now, especially with the autism community. Her research and professional interests are multi-cultural counseling, testing and assessment, family therapy, and child and adolescent therapy. After she finishes her master’s degree she wants to pursue a doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology or Counseling Psychology.

Kimberly Salas HarrisKimberly Salas Harris

Kim Salas Harris is the program coordinator for the Health Careers Opportunity Program (HCOP) at Marquette University. HCOP is a federally funded program that provides educational opportunities for students from disadvantaged backgrounds who are interested in health professions. As the program coordinator, she coordinates programming and recruitment efforts. Prior to working with HCOP, she coordinated a community-based participatory research project funded by the Healthier Wisconsin Partnership Program at the Medical College of Wisconsin. The research project targeted African American women in the Lindsay Heights neighborhood of Milwaukee to promote healthy living.  This position allowed Salas Harris to work within the community, conduct research and disseminate findings through presentations and academic publications. She also worked as an undergraduate admissions counselor for Marquette University, primarily focusing on diversity recruitment within Milwaukee. Salas Harris research interests include community health, urban populations, race and ethnicity, urban education, and gender and sexuality.

Kevin TateKevin Tate

Kevin Tate earned a M.Ed./Ed.S. in mental health counseling and Ph.D. in counselor education from the University of Florida. He is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Counselor Education and Counseling Psychology at Marquette University. He serves as Research Specialist with the Educational Opportunity Program at Marquette as well. Kevin is a licensed professional counselor, and works in private practice with ICF Consultants in Milwaukee, WI, providing both career counseling and crisis response services. His research interests are focused broadly on the lived experience of oppressed populations, with a particular focus on liberation psychology and critical consciousness as a lens for scholarly analysis. His current research is focused on the educational and career development of first generation college students from low-income backgrounds.

Leticia VallejoLeticia Vallejo

Leticia is a doctoral student in the clinical psychology program at Marquette University. Her master’s thesis explored the role of nativity, acculturation, and ethnic identity in the development of alcohol use disorder symptoms among a group of Mexican Americans. Currently, she is in the process of developing a study for her dissertation which will focus on the relationship between cultural variables and Alzheimer’s Disease among U.S. Latin@s. Leticia hopes to pursue work with an emphasis in Latin@ geropsychology that integrates cultural variables, and both clinical and neuropsychology.