BOARD OF DIRECTORS 2019-2020
Dr. Irán Barrera
Dr. Barrera grew up in Avenal, California just an hour away from Fresno and is currently a Professor and graduate coordinator at Fresno State’s Department of Social Work Education. Dr. Barrera is part of a National Leadership program supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (Interdisciplinary Research Leader) to become a change agent with advanced leadership skills and a clear focus on health and equity, allowing him to apply health research and policy to meet the pressing needs of communities. Dr. Barrera is also the Chair of the Cultural Competency Track for the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) and newly elected NASW-CA region D Committee on Nominations and Leadership Identification. Dr. Barrera is also on the Mental Health Advisory board for The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP).
Dr. Barrera is a former minority fellow through the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE), in which allowed Dr. Barrera to achieve two doctoral degrees from two different universities in two different countries and border states (The University of Texas at Arlington and the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León-México). This experience provided Dr. Barrera important awareness related to mental health care disparities among Latinos. As a result, his work (researcher and practitioner) has concentrated on understanding perceptions of mental distress and mental health care literacy among Latinos.
Dr. Yolanda A. Doub
Dr. Yolanda Doub is an Associate Professor of Spanish in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures at Fresno State. She teaches Latin American literature and culture for undergraduate and graduate students both within the major and as GE. Her research focuses on coming-of-age stories in Latin American and Latinx literature and film.
A native of East San José, California, Yolanda grew up in the public school system before beginning her undergraduate studies at Santa Clara University, where she graduated with her BS in Psychology and Spanish. After working as a staff member for several years in a law firm in San José, she moved to Colorado for her graduate studies, receiving her MA and PhD in Spanish from the University of Colorado at Boulder. As one of the few Latina graduate students at the time, she worked as a graduate mentor for both the McNair Scholars Program and the Summer Minority Access to Research and Training (SMART) program at CU Boulder. Since joining Fresno State in 2005, she has continued to seek opportunities to collaborate with Latinx faculty, staff, and students.
Estevan Parra, M.A.
(Graduate Net Initiative)
Estevan Parra Guerrero was born and raised in South Central Los Angeles. After moving to California’s Central Valley to pursue higher education, Estevan completed his undergraduate studies in Business Administration and his master’s degree in Higher Education Administration and Leadership program at California State University, Fresno. While an M.A student, Estevan honed his leadership skills as the operations manager for an American Fortune 500 company. He devotes himself to giving back to the community, volunteering for Fresno Reads, Upward Bound, Youth Leadership Institute of Fresno, and Big Brothers Big Sisters. Working with these programs allowed Estevan the opportunity to promote the importance of educational and social justice.
His passion for art, diversity, and inclusion inspired Estevan to complete his graduate research project on the role of ethnic organizations in the higher education experiences of Latino/a students. Now the Program Assistant and Social Media Coordinator for the Graduate Net Initiative at Fresno State, he has taken the initiative to develop and facilitate the first multidisciplinary graduate-level mentorship program at Fresno State.
Liliana Suzuki, B.S.
(Research and Graduate Studies)
Liliana was born and raised in Lima, Peru to a Peruvian father and a Japanese mother. Even though her parents always encouraged her to study, she thought school was not for her. She moved to Southern California in her late teens and experienced the journey of learning English, a new education system, and adjusting to a new culture. Little did she know, after working for international companies in Los Angeles and San Francisco for a number of years, she would end up working and earning a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration at Fresno State. Through her educational journey, Liliana realized the importance and value of earning a bachelor’s degree.
Liliana brings 17 years of experience having worked in various departments on the Fresno State campus. She currently works as the Dean’s Assistant and Budget Analyst in the Division of Research and Graduate Studies. Through her work in the Division, she is committed to promoting access to higher education for all students of all backgrounds. For the past 8 years, in addition to her work on campus, Liliana has been committed to celebrating the highest achievement, that of graduation, through her volunteer work with the Chicano/Latino Commencement Celebration.
Rodrigo Gomez, M.A., M.S.
Activities Program Chair
(Research and Graduate Studies)
Rodrigo Gomez was born in Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico and came to the United States at the age of 9. His father, his brother, and he settled in Fresno, CA where his father worked in agriculture all his life. Rodrigo has completed all his education at California State University, Fresno completing his undergraduate degree in Criminology and two post-baccalaureate degrees in Rehabilitation Counseling and Education - Higher Education, Administration, and Leadership. He currently works with the Division of Research and Graduate Studies working with graduate faculty to help promote graduate education at Fresno State and providing available resources to current graduate students. Rodrigo enjoys spending time with his family helping raise 4 children, Rebeca, Gabriela, Rodrigo, and Francisco. He spends his free time volunteering with the Catholic church in Madera as a member of the Knights of Columbus and as a Confirmation teacher. Rodrigo’s passion lies in his desire to help others with access to education and educational resources.