Shawn Mendoza

(BA, MPA), is the Assistant Director of Columbia University Institute for Research in African-American Studies. Shawn has served as the IRAAS assistant director since 2002. 

Zoraida Lopez

Zoraida Lopez is the Special Projects Consultant and Grants Coordinator at IRAAS. She received a BA with honors in Political Science/International Relations from Trinity College in Connecticut and a second BA in fine arts from Hunter College in New York. Zoraida is an artist and curator. She recently co-curated Women as Witness, an exhibition about how women photograph community upheaval and was the assistant curator of Picturing Black Girlhood, a photography exhibition presented in conjunction with Columbia University’s Black Girl Movement Conference. Her photographs documenting women in Colombia’s drug wars have been published in Of Note Magazine, The World Policy Journal, Democracy Now, and El Tiempo.

Elizabeth Sarah Ross

Elizabeth Ross is the STSI Assistant Coordinator. She recently graduated and received the summa cum laude honor, from Columbia University’s School of General Studies with a B.A in African-American Studies. Her scholarly interests include African American history and mass incarceration, and her undergraduate thesis research focused on the history of postsecondary correctional education. Elizabeth is the recipient of the Jack Kent Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship and the Jack Kent Cooke Graduate Scholarship. In Fall 2016, Elizabeth commenced a joint JD/PhD program at Harvard University. 

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Meet the Staff

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