Program Coordinator

Dr. Janet Trapp Slagter, Associate Professor, Ph.D. Southern Illinois University

Area(s) of Expertise: History of Western Philosophy, Women and/in the History of Philosophy, Feminist Theory, Contemporary Corporate and Grassroots forms of Globalization, Women's Organizing in the US, Guatemala, Kenya, Women and Aging

Research Interests: Dr. Slagter has published on the Cuban women's movement, femininity and alienation, and on contemporary activism in central California, and maintains a research interest in the politics of women's health. Her current research focuses on faculty roles in shaping university policies.

Teaching Interests: Dr. Slagter teaches course in Feminist Theory, Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Women, a Seminar on Feminist Activism, Women and Aging, Women and the Environment, and Women's Bodies and has taught courses on Race, Class, and Gender Diversity in the US, Critical Thinking and Gender, and Women of Color in the US.  She serves or has served on local boards of the Fresno Free College Foundation/KFCF independent radio station, the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, and the Fresno Community Alliance magazine.

Phone: 559.278.7140

Program Faculty

Dr. Mary Coomes, Instructor, Ph.D., University of Michigan

Research Interests: Dr. Coomes’ fields of study include Gender and the West, Gender and the Environment, U.S. Environmental History, and U.S. Labor History. In addition, she is interested in grass-roots women’s organizing.

Teaching Interests: At Fresno State, Dr. Coomes teaches Introduction to Women’s Studies.


Phone: 559-278-9767

Dr. Kathryn Forbes, Associate Professor, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley

Area(s) of Expertise: Gender and Public Policy, Gender and Sport; Land and Land Use Issues in California; Gender Issues in South Asia; Narrative, Memory, and Oral History; Feminist Ethnography; Feminist Research Methods

Research Interests: Dr. Forbes' current research interests focus on exploring the articulations of gender in public policy in the United States, with particular attention to housing, labor, and education issues in California. She recently completed an ethnographic research project tentatively titled "Gender, Sports, and Justice: the Cultural Politics of Title IX in California Town." This study is situated at the intersection of cultural studies of gender and sport, quantitative studies of Title IX compliance, historical studies of the development of law, and ethnographic studies of public policy and bureaucratic culture.

Teaching Interests: Dr. Forbes teaches Women and Work, Introduction to Women's Studies, Feminist Research Methods, Representations of Women, Gender and Sport

Phone: 559.278.2606

Mandy Greaves, Instructor, M.S., California State University, Fresno

Research Interests: Mandy Greaves has her B.A. in Women's Studies from California State University, Fresno. She has received her masters of science in counseling, in the option of Marriage and Family Therapy. Her research focus is on couple dynamics between monogamous relationships and women's changing role in the private and public sphere.

Teaching Interests: Professor Greaves teaches Introduction to Women's Studies and Feminist Issues in Counseling


Phone: 559-278-9767

Natasha Hagaman, Instructor, MA, Claremont Graduate University (CGU)

Research Interests: Natasha has a BA in Gender Studies from Sonoma State University and a MA in Public Policy from CGU. She’s interested in the intersection of gender and public policy, as well as social issues, particularly as they pertain to gender.  

Teaching Interests: WS 12: Critical Thinking Gender Issues, SOC 130W: Contemporary Social Issues.

Dr. Loretta Kensinger, Professor, Ph.D. Purdue University

Research Interests: Dr. Loretta Kensinger's fields of study include United States Government, Feminist Political Theory, Comparative Politics, and United States Women's History.  Her research interests focus on the political theory of Emma Goldman, social movements, as well as inclusions and exclusions in feminist thought and feminist pedagogy.  Currently, Loretta is exploring the interconnections between U.S. and Mexican anarchists in the early twentieth century, particularly in California.   She is co-editor, with Dr. Penny Weiss, of the edited volume "Feminist Interpretations of Emma Goldman," Pennsylvania State University Press, 2007. Samples of her other publications include: "Radical Lessons:  Thoughts on Emma Goldman, Chaos, Grief and Political Violence Post-9/11/01," Feminist Teacher, 2009;  "Plugged in Praxis: Thoughts on Cyber-Technology, Feminism, and Solidarity with the Women of Afghanistan," Journal of International Women's Studies, 2003; and"(In)Quest of Liberal Feminism," Hypatia,  1997.

Teaching Interests:  Loretta has taught a number of courses for the program, including the History of Feminism, Feminist Theory, Women in U.S. Politics, Representations of Women, Introduction to Women's Studies, and Critical Thinking: Gender Issues.   In 2003 she was honored with the School of Social Science "Outstanding Teacher Award".

Phone: 559.278.2858

Dr. Larissa M. Mercado-López, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Texas at San Antonio

Research Interests: Larissa M. Mercado-López, Ph.D., received her doctorate in English/Latina Literature from the University of Texas at San Antonio, where she completed her dissertation on a Ford Fellowship. She is on the Executive Committee for the Society for the Study of Gloria Anzaldúa, and is a member of the editorial board for the scholarly journal, Chicana/Latina Studies. Dr. Mercado-López’s book manuscript Mestiza Mat(t)ers: On the Corporeal Contours of Maternal Knowledge merges the Chicana philosophies of Gloria Anzaldúa, Cherríe Moraga, and Maria Lugones, with works in feminist phenomenology by Iris Marion Young, Linda Alcoff, Jacqueline Martínez, and Mariana Ortega, to show how mestiza mothers construct opposition knowledges through the social and bodily lived experiences of mestizaje and maternity. In her second research trajectory, Dr. Mercado-López examines the discursive, visual, and environmental colonization of fitness, investigating in particular the ways in which popular fitness conflicts with working-class Latinas’ constructions of womanhood and their material realities.

Teaching Interests: At Fresno State, Dr. Mercado-López teaches Introduction to Women’s Studies and Politics of Latina Health and Size. At her previous institution, she taught Feminism and Globalization, Latinas in U.S. Society, Feminist Theories, Feminist Literary Theories, and Feminist Research Methodologies.


Phone: 559-278-8599

Melissa Knight, Instructor (Psy.D., Alliant International University - In Progress; M.O.B., California School of Professional Psychology)

Research Interests: Professor Knight will complete in 2013 her doctorate of psychology in organizational development at Alliant International University. She is the owner of Knight Consulting, an organizational consulting, training and development company specializing in capacity building for nonprofit agencies, which she formed in 1991. A nationally-certified trainer (BoardSource and Achieve Global), specializing in diversity, strategic planning, communication and fund development. Her research, writing and field work with nonprofit organizations throughout the state and nation has focused on empowering groups that have been marginalized. The preponderance of her work in this area has improved the lives of women, children, people with disabilities, LGBTQQI communities, people of color and homeless persons and those living in poverty.

Teaching Interests: Women of Color, Introduction to LGBTQI Studies, Representations of Women, Critical thinking


Enid Perez, Instructor, J.D., University of Michigan Law

Research Interests: Enid Perez has a B.A. in Latin American Studies from the University of California, Berkeley. She has received her Juris Doctorate from the University of Michigan Law School. While attending law school, she also received a Graduate Certificate in Women's Studies.

Teaching Interests: WS 12: Critical Thinking Gender Issues.


Katie Quinn-Crask, Instructor, MS Counseling with emphasis in Marriage, Family & Therapy from California State University, Fresno.

Research Interests: Professor Quinn-Crask, a licensed Marriage, Family Therapist is the Director of Clinical Services at Marjaree Mason Center. She oversees all therapeutic services for women, children and perpetrators; training institute which provides trainings to community and staff. Professor Quinn-Crask is recognized as a trainer for Police Officers Standards & Training (POST) for state of California specializing in the areas of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault. Also, Professor Quinn-Crask is the owner of Counseling Pathways for Change serving children and adults since 2009.

Teaching Interests: Domestic Violence for both victims and perpetrators.


Dr. Morghan Velez Young-Alfaro, Lecturer, Ph.D. Stanford University

Area(s) of Expertise: Gender and Race in the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Systems 

Research Interests: Dr. Young-Alfaro focuses on applied research in community setting throughout California. This work also encompasses consulting with community organizations and foundations that prioritize and interrupt social equity issues around gender and racial biases. 

Teaching Interests: Dr. Young-Alfaro teaches courses in gender issues, critical thinking, introduction to Women’s Studies, writing courses on gender and race in contemporary society, and non-profit management and leadership. Courses are informed by local and regional issues and Young-Alfaro’s service as a Board Member with California School-Age Consortium. 

Phone: 559.278. 2858


 Linda Ragus, Admin Support

Ms. Ragus came to Fresno State in 2006 after a 29 year career with AT&T. She worked in the Office of Evaluations before coming to the College of Social Sciences. Ms. Ragus has worked in the departmental offices of Sociology, Chicano Latin American Studies and History. She provides administrative support for the Women's Studies Program and the Political Science Department.