Center for Arts, Migration, and Entrepreneurship

Center for Arts, Migration, and Entrepreneurship

Affiliated Faculty

Hannah M. Alarian
Political Science

Hannah M. Alarian is currently an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Florida, where she also is a faculty affiliate with the Center for European Studies. Her research examines topics of migrant integration, immigration, political identity and participation, and public policy. Broadly, she considers the processes through which immigrants are included in and excluded from their new societies in Western Europe.

Jacquelyn Berry
Assistant Professor; Psychology (The American University in Cairo)

Dr. Jackie Berry is a Cognitive Scientist who studies learning and human-computer interaction as an Assistant Professor of Psychology at The American University in Cairo. Jackie is the first person of color to earn a PhD in Cognitive Psychology from SUNY Albany.

Jackie originally travelled to Egypt as a Fulbright United States Scholar to study interface switching in Arabic-English biliterates. As a result of her work there Jackie has spoken before the United Nations about language policies worldwide. Jackie is a best-selling author and co-founder of Artificial Intelligence for Africa. Her mission is to improve how people engage with technology regardless of language or educational background. Dr. Berry recently competed in the World pageant competition for women with Ph.D.'s or M.D.'s as Dr. World Africa 2022.

Jasmine L. Blanks Jones
Program in Racism, Immigration and Citizenship (Johns Hopkins University)

Jasmine L. Blanks Jones is a dynamic theatre nonprofit leader, award-winning educator, and holds a dual PhD in Education and Africana Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. Her research on theatrical performance as a civic engagement praxis illuminates global race-based inequities in education and health, lifting the potential of knowledge co-creation through the arts and digital cultural production. As founder of Burning Barriers Building Bridges Youth Theatre (B4YT), a cultural performance company dedicated to community empowerment through the arts, she has more than twenty years of experience in youth development in Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America. Having developed a track record of leadership in arts and advocacy in communities of color globally, in 2018 Jasmine extended the scope of B4YT to include a consulting practice, Creating Brave Stages, which provides support and guidance for advocacy organizations looking to integrate the arts into their movements and artists aspiring to create positive change through their performances. She holds a Masters of Public Policy degree from the University of Minnesota and Bachelor of Science in Music Education from Florida A&M University. She is a lecturer in the Program in Racism, Immigration and Citizenship at Johns Hopkins University where she conducted research and public scholarship as an inaugural Postdoctoral Fellow with Inheritance Baltimore. She serves as the Executive Director of the Center for Social Concern at Johns Hopkins.

Heidi Boisvert
Assistant Professor; School of Theatre + Dance, AI and the Arts, Immersive Performance Technologies

Heidi Boisvert (PhD) is an interdisciplinary artist, experience designer, creative technologist, and academic researcher who interrogates the neurobiological and socio-cultural effects of media and technology. Simply put, she studies the role of the body, the senses, and emotion in human perception and social change.

Boisvert is currently mapping the world's first media genome, while taking great care with its far-reaching ethical implications. She founded futurePerfect lab, a creative agency and think-tank that works with social justice organizations to design playful emerging media campaigns to ignite the public imagination. She also co-founded XTH, a company creating novel modes of expression through biotechnology and the human body and devises large-scale networked theatre and dance.

Presently, she is working with David Byrne on Theater of the Mind, a new immersive theater piece and co-curating EdgeCut, a live performance series, which explores our complex relationship to the digital. Boisvert is Assistant Professor of AI and the Arts at the University of Florida in the College of the Arts, School of Theatre + Dance. She is also a Senior Research Fellow at the Norman Lear Center, a research affiliate in the Open Documentary Lab at MIT and a member of NEW INC’s Creative Science track. As part of CAME, she is developing a series of micro-performances and a living lab (along with a set of open-source machine learning tools) to transform epigenetic trauma.  

Kenneth L. Broadway
Professor, School of Music, College of the Arts

Equally at home behind timpani, steel pan, or the drumset, Dr. Kenneth Broadway has a passion for training the next generation of teachers, performers, and leaders in the field of music. He has served as Director of Percussion Studies at the University of Florida since 1997.

Dr. Broadway has appeared at various conferences throughout North America, Europe and Australia, and his compositions have been published by C. Alan Publications. His compact disc with the LYNX Duo (Music for Saxophone and Percussion) is available on the Mark Custom Recording label, and he is featured on other recordings on the Mark and Capstone labels. Dr. Broadway is active in the Percussive Arts Society, the College Music Society, and NACWPI. He is a Performing Artist for Yamaha, and educational endorser for Remo Drumheads, Sabian Cymbals and Promark Mallets. Dr. Broadway received the BM, MM, and DMA degrees from the University of Georgia.

Rachel Carrico
Assistant Professor, School of Theatre and Dance, College of the Arts

Rachel Carrico is an Assistant Professor of Dance Studies at the University of Florida’s School of Theatre + Dance. Her research explores the aesthetic, political, and social histories of second lining, an improvisational dance form rooted in New Orleans's African diaspora parading traditions.

Her scholarship has been published in several journals and edited volumes; awarded the Society of Dance History Scholars' Selma Jeanne Cohen Award for excellence in dance scholarship; and supported by the UF Scholarship Enhancement Fund, UC Center for New Racial Studies, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation, and the Center for Gulf South Research at Tulane University. Rachel holds a Ph.D. in Critical Dance Studies from the University of California–Riverside, an M.A. in Performance Studies from NYU, and a teaching certificate from the Limón Institute. She parades in New Orleans annually with the Ice Divas Social & Pleasure Club.

Saidah N. Carter
Co-Founder - Bright Insights Global LLC

Saidah Nash Carter is a digital business native with a passion for value creation and the use of technology to create new opportunity for business and for humanity. She began her career with Reuters NewMedia during a period of profound digital transformation and went on to build and launch some of the first online news services for early internet sensations like Yahoo! and AOL. 

She thrives pushing the boundaries of corporate thinking and business development through emerging technology, co-creation, and a focus on sustainability. She has an eye for identifying opportunities to stretch businesses to new frontiers while remaining connected the company’s core DNA and value proposition. This strength led her to design one of the first customer co-creation programs in Thomson Reuters resulting in a new way of approaching partnership and IP ownership and creating a pathway for richer collaboration with both customer and partner ecosystems. 
As SVP- Africa Innovation, she launched Thomson Reuters data science and innovation lab in Cape Town, one of seven innovation Labs globally and the only one in an emerging market. She is particularly proud of her team’s work delivering Thomson Reuters successful Africa Startup Challenge, Africa's first Intrapreneurship Conference, and her flagship initiative to bring financial inclusion to Africa’s small scale farmers - Bankable Farmer. 
Today she leads Bright Insights Global (BIG), a boutique consultancy and expert network committed to helping companies do better business in Africa. BIG’s network expertise spans financial services, media, private equity, law, talent management, digital product and business development. BIG was formed out of a desire to design and accelerate forward thinking, purpose driven, globally competitive organizations. 
She is also passionate about Africa’s Intrapraneur ecosystem and works to identify, connect and empower these innovators inside large corporates. She works in partnership with the League of Intrapreneurs (, as a Global Fellow and Africa Catalyst. 
Most Recent Awards & Recognition: 2017 Inspiring 50 Women in Tech, United Nations 2018 Voices of African Mothers Innovation Award, League of Intrapreneurs Global Fellow – 2019 

Tawanda Chabikwa

Tawanda Chabikwa is an interdisciplinary artist-scholar whose work revolves around Black and Africana dance practices, practice-based research, and creative collaboration. Current research and creative practice investigates choreographic practices of transnational African artists, contemporary African theatrical dance, Africana religions/spiritualities and philosophy, decolonial pedagogies, embodied research methodologies.

He holds a B.A. in Human Ecology from the College of the Atlantic, an M.F.A. in Dance from Southern Methodist University, and works with storytelling, performance art, and visual art (most recent exhibition was at the William H. Thomas Gallery in Columbus, Ohio 2017), and creative writing (first novel Baobabs in Heaven published in 2010). Tawanda holds a doctorate in Africana Studies from the Department of African American and African Studies at The Ohio State University and is an Assistant  Professor of Dance and Africana Studies at the University of Texas at El Paso. Tawanda’s interdisciplinary scholarly and creative endeavors have led to collaborative encounters, including think-tank initiatives, educational practice, performances exhibitions, and presentations in Zimbabwe, France, Mozambique, many parts of the United States and more. 

Dionne Champion
Research Assistant Professor; Center for Arts in Medicine, College of the Arts

Dionne Champion is a Research Assistant Professor in the Center for the Arts in Medicine at the University of Florida. Her research is focused on the design and ethnographic study of learning environments that blend STEM and creative embodied learning activities, particularly for minoritized youth who have experienced feelings of marginalization in STEM education settings.

She is currently working on several projects that center STEM and Arts integration through “making,” engaging youth and communities in arts-integrated making practices with an intentional focus on developing equitable and productive collaborations that are interdisciplinary and intergenerational. She works primarily with African American populations, researching learning and identity in informal learning spaces, seeking to understand how the body and dance can be resources for sense-making and contribute to the development of agency and support healthy conversations around power, equity, and social issues.

Dionne is also co-Director of the SPARC352 initiative. Through this project, she is working to better understand how the arts can support creative social entrepreneurship in marginalized communities and to develop models for equitable research and relationships between researchers and communities (positioning youth and communities as co-researchers).

Silviu Ciulei
Assistant Professor; School of Music, Guitar Studies, College of the Arts

Classical and flamenco guitarist Silviu Ciulei was born in Constanta, Romania. He began his musical studies at the National Conservatory at age six. In 2004, Silviu came to the US and was awarded a Full International Scholarship in Guitar Performance at Middle Tennessee State University where he studied with Dr. William Yelverton and received his Bachelor of Music degree.

Silviu has been a top prizewinner in some of the world’s most prestigious competitions including Guitar Foundation of America’s International Concert Artist Competition, Schadt String Competition, and Parkening International Guitar Competition in Malibu, CA.

Acoustic Guitar Magazine hails “...guitarist Silviu Ciulei brings extraordinary touch to both classical and flamenco repertoire." Silviu is also an acclaimed flamenco guitarist. He has traveled to study flamenco in Andalucia, Spain. He holds a Master and Doctorate in Music Performance from Florida State University where he studied with renowned professor Bruce Holzman. Silviu speaks five languages fluently and is also a fine flamenco singer with his touring group, the Maharajah Flamenco Trio. Dr. Ciulei is currently Director of Guitar Studies at the University of Florida.

Amanda Concha-Holmes
Assistant Lecturer; Depart of Anthropology, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Dr. Amanda Concha-Holmes is an applied visual and ecological anthropologist, director of I.R.I.E. Center (Innovative Research and Intercultural Education), and Courtesy Assistant Professor in Anthropology at the University of Florida.

Her research for the past decade focuses on decolonizing representations of African descendants in the Americas predominantly through embodied forms of knowledge production, collective learning, and digital, art-based academic and healing endeavors. Employing poetic interventions through digital media to document underrepresented people and places is integral to her research, publications, teaching, and local programming. She calls this theoretical and methodological intervention Evocative Ethnography, which is an academic-artistic-healing endeavor that she has pioneered aimed at bringing feminist, decolonial ways of knowing the world to the fore. It extends from insights and theoretical interventions produced by feminists of color to the politics and poetics of representing place, multispecies entanglements, and marginalized bodies and knowledges.

Her work has been published in flagship journals like Cultural Anthropology and Visual Anthropology Review, she has received prestigious grants like the Wenner Gren Postdoctorate Research Fellowship and the National Endowment for the Humanities-Mellon Fellowship for Digital Publication, she has created exhibitions on Evoking the Complexity of Black Lives in Florida at the Harn Museum of Art, the Cotton Club Museum and Cultural Center, and the Matheson History Museum. Her most recent work is applying this intervention to decolonizing representations in the public-school curricula through SAAADI (Sankofa African American Arts and Digital Initiative).

Thomas DeFrantz
Theatre, Performance Studies, Segal Engineering, Black Studies (Northwestern University)

Thomas F. DeFrantz directs SLIPPAGE: Performance|Culture|Technology, a research lab that explores emerging technology in live performance applications. Believes in our shared capacity to do better and engage creative spirit for a collective good that is anti-racist, proto-feminist, and queer affirming. Member AI4Africa. Convenes the Black Performance Theory working group as well as the Collegium for African Diaspora Dance, a growing consortium of 350 researchers committed to exploring Black dance practices in embodied writing. Creative Projects include Queer Theory! An Academic Travesty commissioned by the Theater Offensive of Boston and the Flynn Center for the Arts; fastDANCEpast, created for the Detroit Institute for the Arts; reVERSE-gesture-reVIEW commissioned by the Nasher Museum in response to the work of Kara Walker, January, 2017. Books: Routledge Companion to African American Theater and Performance (with Kathy Perkins, Sandra Richards, and Renee Alexander Craft, 2018), Choreography and Corporeality: Relay in Motion (with Philipa Rothfield, 2016), Black Performance Theory: An Anthology of Critical Readings (with Anita Gonzalez, 2014), Dancing Many Drums: Excavations in African American Dance (2002), and Dancing Revelations: Alvin Ailey's Embodiment of African American Culture (2004). DeFrantz acted as a consultant for the Smithsonian Museum of African American Life and Culture, contributing concept and a voice-over for a permanent installation on Black Social Dance that opened with the museum in 2016.

Mustapha Diyaol Haqq
Okuafo Foundation, Co-Founder

A Ghanaian Artificial Intelligence Researcher and graduate of Blue Crest University College who has gained global recognition for his work in agricultural innovation. Named as part of the 50 Next Class of 2022, which recognizes young people who are shaping the future of gastronomy, agriculture, and food.

A World Food Forum champion, mobilizing young influential figures to increase the visibility and reach of WFF activities and issues related to agri-food systems. A winner of numerous awards in his field including the coveted Zayed Sustainability Prize, Mustapha’s innovation has clearly distinguished him as an asset to the African continent and the world at large.

Rujeko Dumbutshena
Assistant Professor; School of Theatre + Dance, Contemporary African and African Diasporic Dance Practices, First Year Dance Ensemble

My current research explores dance as a medium that facilitates a return to indigenous knowledge systems through African centered curriculum development, sustainable community project development and by supporting cultural arts practitioners and their institutions.   

As a professional dancer, I maintain an embodied Pan Africanist dance practice that helps me to remember, reclaim, and sustain my identity and vitality. My creative expression is inspired by historical and mythological narratives, and I interpret these stories by centering women and the feminine power of their ritual and performances and practices. My study focuses on, and is inspired by, the strategies and tools used by a lineage of contemporary Black African female choreographers to create their own agency.  

As an independent artist and community organizer, I have created cultural exchange tours to Zimbabwe, Botswana and South Africa, and have organized and hosted African music and dance camps in New Mexico. My goal is to fold these experiences into my current practice and propel my ideas forward and expand on my impact, work, and service. As such I continue to dedicate a portion of my research to exploring innovative entrepreneurial projects that help sustain, preserve and uplift the arts and cultural economy of African people. Specifically, I have been researching responsive community-based participatory practices as a starting point for a community-based project I would like to establish in Zimbabwe, and hope to support the work of master African musicians and dancers living in the U.S with the projects they have established in their homeland. In an effort to identify the strategies and tools used to build and sustain arts-based communities at home while away from home, I intend to connect and develop relationships with artists and cultural arts institutions on the continent of Africa.   

Lastly, as a 2022 Global Fellow at the University of Florida I will use the support I receive from this program to travel and conduct my research and professional development in the Gambia and Guinea West Africa in December 2022. Concurrently, I am collaborating with a professor at the University of Kisubi, Uganda on curriculum development focused on technology, dance and pedagogy. I am also looking to build a relationship with the Afrikera Dance Organization in Zimbabwe to support international dance exchanges and intend to apply to the Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Program and the Fulbright Specialist Program to develop partnerships with institutions like the University of Kisubi and Afrikera. This presence will simultaneously fulfil my desire to grow as an assistant professor, and allow for sustained relationships with African arts institutions in urban and rural communities in Zimbabwe, Uganda, Tanzania and other countries in West Africa. 

Joan Frosch
Professor; School of Theatre and Dance, College of the Arts

Joan D. Frosch is Professor of Dance in the School of Theatre and Dance, where she has taught since 1995. She was also director of UF’s Center for World Arts, a living laboratory exploring the interface of arts and society, which she co-founded with colleague Larry Crook in 1996. Dr. Frosch is affiliate faculty of the Centers for African Studies, Latin American Studies, and Digital Worlds.

She is a consultant for the Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, National Endowment for the Arts, and Creative Capital, among others. Awarded the University of Florida Research Foundation Professorship (2012-2015), Dr. Frosch is a dance ethnographer, Laban Movement Analyst (CMA), filmmaker, choreographer, and author. Her research has attracted numerous honors and awards, such as the national Lilly Fellowship for innovative curriculum in Dance in World Cultures, the National Endowment for the Arts (Dance-Creativity), the Cologne Choreographers' Forum for her choreography, "China."

Jeremy Frusco
Associate Scholar; Laney Graduate School, Dean's Office (Emory University)

Jeremy Frusco received his Ph.D. in Music at the University of Florida in 2022. His current work explores the interdisciplinary dimensions of popular music, particularly hip hop, and how contemporary artists use their platform to perform care, practice social responsibility, and critically reflect on identity and belonging.

His dissertation research examines how the Italian rapper Ghali forms creative strategies of care and responsibility in response to the pressures of celebrity, internet culture, and sociopolitical conflict. Beyond this research, he has worked collaboratively with colleagues in the humanities to better understand the invisible emotional labor behind livestreaming and online community interactions. Through platforms like Discord and Twitch, their work examined how language about live-streaming struggles to grasp the emotional resonances of digital life. Jeremy continues to work broadly in the humanities, with particular attention to publicly-engaged and digital forms of scholarship. He is a collaborative grant writer and currently serves as the Program Coordinator for the Mellon PhD Program Interventions grant at the James T. Laney School of Graduate Studies at Emory University in Atlanta, GA.

Kate Golebiowska
Senior Research Fellow and the Coordinator of the BA Honours Program (Social Sciences, Creative Arts) at the College of Indigenous Futures, Education and the Arts (CIFEA) at Charles Darwin University (CDU), Darwin, Australia.

Kate Golebiowska is a Senior Research Fellow and the Coordinator of the BA Honours Program (Social Sciences, Creative Arts) at the College of Indigenous Futures, Education and the Arts (CIFEA) at Charles Darwin University (CDU), Darwin, Australia. 

She is an international migration scholar whose research sits at the intersection of human geography, demography, entrepreneurship and workforce planning and development. She looks forward to bringing her Australian research and knowledge to generate new insights into immigrant entrepreneurship with a focus on women and imagine the next-level social impact. Her research has contributed novel insights into the impacts of international migration on regional population change and labour force growth and pioneered knowledge about the mobility motivations and workplace experiences of international migrants in regional areas of Australia, especially in the human services industries. Kate has also contributed original, comparative analyses of governance, objectives, demographic and economic outcomes of the regional migration policies in Australia and Canada. In her recent work she explored immigrant-born women entrepreneurship in sectors as diverse as the arts, early childhood education and care, food and beverage and professional services, and identified the professional needs of these women.   

Her new team project critically examines the experiences of the First Nations and international students in navigating higher education in Australia with a view to re-imagine how their experiences may be best supported in the post-COVID19 environment. She is an experienced qualitative researcher and has a practitioner and reviewer experience in human research ethics derived from serving for 10+ years at the Charles Darwin University Human Research Ethics Committee. 

Kate serves as a guest co-editor of a special issue of the Australian Geographer (2023) devoted to new research and ground-breaking conceptualisations of the settlement of humanitarian migrants in regional Australia. Her articles appeared in the Journal of International Migration and Integration, Australian Geographer, International Journal of Training Research, International Journal of Organizational Diversity, People and Place. She led and co-authored book chapters in edited volumes on international migration to regions and remote areas published by Ashgate, Routledge, Edward Elgar, ANU Press and L’Harmattan (in French).  

As a long-time member of the demographic and migration research community in Australia Kate is happy to connect interested CAME students and Faculty with researchers in these fields in Australia. She serves as the Secretary of the Australian Population Association (2021-2022).  

Kate holds a MA in Political Science and a Certificate in European Studies from the University of Warsaw (Poland) and a PhD in Public Policy from the Australian National University, Canberra (Australia). 

Shabnam Goli
Music (Los Rios Community Colleges)

Dr. Shabnam Goli holds a PhD in Ethnomusicology and has an extensive academic background in migration and diaspora studies. Shabnam's research has delved into community dynamics among immigrant populations, particularly focusing on Iranian immigrants in California. As an instructional designer, she has contributed to the development of inclusive educational content, emphasizing Open Educational Resources.

Laura Gonzales
Assistant Professor; Digital Writing and Cultural Rhetorics

Dr. Laura Gonzales is an assistant professor of digital writing and cultural rhetorics in the English department at the University of Florida. Her work highlights the importance of language justice in community, academic, and technological contexts. She is the author of Sites of Translation: What Multilinguals Can Teach Us About Digital Writing and Rhetoric (University of Michigan Press, 2018) and Designing Multilingual Experiences in Technical Communication (Utah State University Press, 2022). 

Aida A. Hozić
Associate Professor of International Relations and Associate Chair of the Department of Political Science; College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Aida A. Hozić is an Associate Professor of International Relations and Associate Chair of the Department of Political Science. Her research is situated at the intersection of political economy, cultural studies, and international security. Her current research projects focus on crime and state in Southeastern Europe, visual representations of race in international politics, and the diffusion of global arts markets in the 21st century. 

She is the author of Hollyworld: Space, Power and Fantasy in the American Economy  (Cornell University Press, 2002) and co-editor (with Jacqui True) of Scandalous Economics: Gender and Politics of Financial Crises (Oxford University Press, 2016). She has written dozens of peer-reviewed articles and chapters in edited volumes. Her work has been supported by the John D. and Katherine T. MacArthur Foundation, IREX, Institute for Turkish Studies, Open Society Institute, multiple Fulbright Awards, and other grants and fellowships.

Her courses include Divided Cities (Belfast, Nicosia, Sarajevo, Jerusalem), Art and War, Culture and World Politics and Feminist Political Economy.

Alana Jackson
Service Learning Lecturer, Center for Arts in Medicine, College of the Arts

Alana Jackson is a multi-modal artist visionary and speaker working at the intersections of arts, entertainment, and public health. As a lecturer with the University of Florida’s Center for Arts in Medicine, Alana’s focus has been to prepare students to be catalysts for positive change. An Artist, Strategist, and Communicator, she additionally has extensive experience helping organizations to build and sustain programs.

Her work has spanned from juvenile justice/correctional settings to working bedside in hospital-based arts programming, in addition to spearheading community programs for adults facing neurodegenerative conditions.

Her current work focuses on the development of self-sustaining community centers for learning, wellness, and workforce development through creativity and collaboration. Other focus areas include arts, disaster, recovery, and resilience; and youth empowerment programs connected to arts and STEM integration, spoken word, literacy, learner identities, and health.

Alana has leveraged her background in the performing arts as a songwriter, dancer, and spoken word artist to inspire individuals to be agents for joy, wellness, and transformation in their own lives and communities.

Stan Kaye
School of Theatre and Dance, Lighting Design

Stan Kaye heads the graduate Lighting Design program at the University of Florida in Gainesville. Professor Kaye’s background stretches over forty years of experience in both academia and the lighting industry.

The relationship between a strong commitment to teaching and ongoing activity in the profession is a cornerstone of his teaching style. Born in Brooklyn, his informal training in lighting design was the result of years of professional free-lance exposure to the finest practitioners of stage lighting in New York City. He has held positions and worked on projects at Production Arts Lighting (now PRG), The Joyce Theatre, The Brooklyn Academy of Music, Lincoln Center, The Acting Company, Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre, and Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts, the Freed Center for the Performing Arts, the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Renwick Gallery where he was a research fellow for 2015-16. In Fall 2022 Kaye will be on sabbatical working at the Smithsonian again and learning from LD Jeff Razitz in California who is a renowned expert on lighting live events for TV broadcast. 

He holds the following degrees: The AA from Kingsborough Community College (City University of New York), the BFA from Brooklyn College, (CUNY) and the MFA from the University of Hawaii, Manoa. Since 1989 he has taught at Bucknell University, Northeastern University, and The University of Nebraska. In the Fall of 1999 he joined the faculty of the University of Florida. Professor Kaye is a member of United Scenic Artists-829, the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD) and the Illuminating Engineers Society of North America (IESNA) and the Professional Lighting Designers Association (PLD) based in Europe. 
His design credits include over 150 productions including dramas, musicals, industrials, architecture, and special events in both professional and academic domains. He has won numerous awards for his design work over the last 39 years, including a Po’o-kela award (the Hawaiian Tony) and several KC-ACTF awards. In Fall of 2015 while on research sabbatical he worked with the Smithsonian’s lighting design department to relight David Hockney's groundbreaking piece Snails Space: Painting as Performance with Vari-lites the first work of art illuminated with automated color changing lighting. Kaye and Scott Rosenfeld engaged in a yearlong study of the art and designed a LED based system that replaced the 20 year old Varilite system. The Smithsonian choose to fund the redesign and is now in operation at American Art in Washington DC. See link: Kaye also assisted Rosenfeld on the lighting of the opening show at the Renwick Gallery titled Wonder in Fall 2015. See Link:
Many of Kaye's students have a strong history at the Williamstown Theatre Festival, on and off Broadway, recent students have worked as Assistant LD's and as LD's on Broadway shows. Kaye set up and secured a formal apprenticeship program at the Asolo (LORT) regional theatre in Sarasota. At the Asolo students work side by side with professional freelance designers and build relationships that bridge them into the professional theatre in NYC and other major markets around the nation. Florida students dominate at the Lighting Dimensions International conference and trade show each year, in fact our alumni have run the internship program there making direct connections to the industry along with the most active design and technology professionals in the entertainment industry. Recently Kay organized a internship with the Lighting Design Group.  
Back in 2002 Professor Kaye, in partnership with Professor Martin Gold (School of Architecture), received a grant from the Nuckolls Fund for Lighting Education to create a curriculum that synthesizes theatrical and architectural lighting design. Recent guests in this special program have included James Turrell, Anne Militello, Paul Gallo and Heather Carson among others. This Bi-annual  team-taught class is offered to graduate theatrical lighting designers and graduate architecture students in alternating years. 
He writes for industry trade publications and is often quoted in articles related to lighting design education. Including Live Design, LD & A. He works as a guest artist nationally and consults. 
Professor Kaye is President and founder of SKDesign and Consulting LLC, a theatre design consultancy working in the Southeast United States. 
Professor Kaye founded the international podcast known as LIGHT TALK with the Lumen Brothers with his colleagues David Jacques (UC Long Beach) and Steve Woods (Southern Methodist University) Light Talk began in 2017 and has been downloaded over 150,000 times across 120 foreign nations. The podcast has be called the "new voice of the industry" Light Talk is published weekly and is self produced. LIGHT TALK is non-profit endeavor and currently does not take any commercial sponsors. Currently there are over 150 episodes and may be found on iTunes, Google play and Stitcher and IHeart radio. LIGHT TALK also interviews leaders in the profession in a informal and engaging way. The podcast maintains a website
In Summer 2018 Kaye was a Keynote speaker at Electronic Theatre Controls International Workshop in Madison Wisconsin where he and the Lumen Brothers interviewed CEO and founder of ETC Fred Foster. Kaye and the Lumen Brothers gave a master class in lighting design to participants from over 40 countries. LIGHT TALK continues to attract listeners, with  a Facebook group with over 1,200 members worldwide who pose questions and topics for upcoming shows. Some lighting educators around the world include the Light Talk podcast as required listening for their students. The show is entertaining and educational. 

His consultancy SKDesign and Consulting LLC recently completed the new Furman Center for the Arts at the University of Tampa, including the new recital hall, small black box, and reception stage in the new gallery space.  For the the Sarasota Jewish Federation with is designing facade lighting, custom remote controlled track lighting for the new ballroom. Three large projects are currently underway in the early phases:  and renovation of the Martin Theatre in Panama City Florida, Howard Middle School for the performing arts in Orlando Florida and Winter Park High School theatre in Winter Park Florida. Process work can be seen here:   

In 2020 Professor Kaye was awarded the undergraduate mentor of the year award from the University Regional Theatre Association (URTA) in Chicago.  In that same year,  Kaye was presented with the distinguished alumni award from Brooklyn College of the city university of New York.  

In Fall 2022 Kaye is on a research sabbatical. Once again at the Smithsonian where he is researching and learning about the worlds largest wirelessly controlled museum lighting system. He will also travel to California to learn from several of the nations top designers for lighting live performance in the broadcast environment. 

In November he will host and participate in a 90-minute webinar hosted by the Illuminating Engineers Society of North America on how to reform lighting education at the University level to give students more dynamic and sustainable careers. The webinar can be found here

Professor Kaye and two MFA graduate students, and two BFA students on a 3D digital reconstruction project for legendary lighting designer  Beverly Emmons of her 1996 Broadway production of The Heiress for the performing arts legacy project. 

Chrysostomos Kostopoulos
Lecturer; Department of Classics, Modern Greek, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Chrysostomos Kostopoulos studied Classics at the University of Ioannina and earned an MA and a Ph.D. degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His interests vary from Roman and Ancient Greek Science to Modern Greek linguistics, history, and politics.

He has published reviews and articles in journals such as Delos, Mouseion, and Ombrela and has presented papers at various national and international conferences. At UF, he teaches courses on Modern Greek language and literature as well as Modern Greek history, Greek identity, and the continuity of the Greek civilization from ancient to modern times. He is currently working on a monograph examining the role and the impact of the Rebetika songs on the immigrant Greek communities in the USA.

Jamie J. Kraft
Director, Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Warrington College of Business Administration

Jamie Kraft is currently the Director of the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center. Jamie came to the Center from Deloitte Consulting where he spent several years as a management consultant focusing on economic performance evaluation, competitive assessment, and strategic development for clients in the manufacturing and consumer products industries.

He graduated from the University of Arizona with a degree in Microbiology and from the University of Florida as a Matherly Scholar with a MBA specializing in Finance, Operations Management, and Business Strategy. Before starting with the Center, Jamie spent one year in Paris studying the French language.

He has been with the Center for the past 20 years and is currently the Center’s Director. He has served as the instructor for courses covering the topics of the entrepreneurial mindset, business planning, technology commercialization, small business consulting, customer discovery, entrepreneurial leadership, and creativity, and has managed, led, and participated in student programs in Silicon Valley, Hungary, Ireland, Chile, Cuba, South Africa and Haiti.

Armin Langer
Assistant Professor; Center for European Studies, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Armin Langer is a DAAD Visiting Assistant Professor at the Center for European Studies. Prior to joining CES, he was a Visiting Research Scholar at Brandeis University's Schusterman Center for Israel Studies in Waltham, MA, a Transatlantic Partnership on Memory & Democracy Fellow at the Center for German Studies at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, and worked for the Center for Jewish Ethics at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Wyncote, PA.

His research interests are migration, identity politics and populism in Europe and the US. He is author of a monograph on German-Jewish integration, co-edited an anthology on Jewish-Muslim entanglements and published several articles in edited volumes and peer-reviewed journals, including the German Studies Review (SSCI, AHCI), Studi Irlandesi. A Journal of Irish Studies (ESCI) and Journal of Jewish Ethics (ESCI). He has received various prizes and grants, such as the Western Jewish Studies Association's Baron Award or the University of Notre Dame's Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism Grant.

Armin holds a Ph.D. in sociology from the Humboldt University of Berlin. He also studied philosophy and Jewish studies in Budapest, Jerusalem, Potsdam, and Washington, D.C., and graduated with two M.A.'s and two B.A.'s. He was ordained as a rabbi by the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and has had teaching and pulpit positions in Jewish communities in the US, Mexico, Sweden, Germany, Austria and Hungary.

Barbara McDade Gordon
Associate Professor Emerita; Department of Geography, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Barbara McDade Gordon, Ph.D. is Associate Professor Emerita, Geography & African Studies, University of Florida; and an Affiliate Faculty Member in the Center for Arts, Migration, & Entrepreneurship (CAME) in the UF College of the Arts; and serves on the Advisory Committee of the African American Studies Program at UF.

Her book, African Entrepreneurship: Theory & Reality (UPF 1998) co-edited with Anita Spring, was the inspiration for the CAME Conference: “African Entrepreneurship, the Arts + Beyond” (2022). They are co-editors of a volume of articles and performances from that conference.

She is a founding director of Alachua County African and African American Historical Society, President of Welcoming Gainesville & Alachua County, and Secretary of the United Nations Association-Gainesville. She serves on the Boards of Directors of the Cotton Club Museum and Cultural Center, and Cultural Arts Coalition. She is President-Elect of the Retired Faculty of the University of Florida.

Barbara served as Director of Upward Bound, a college preparatory program for promising students from low-income households in a joint UF appointment, 2004-2012. She continues to communicate with Upward Bound graduates and their parents and is proud of their accomplishments.

She received the Bachelor of Arts from Texas Southern University; Master’s in Community & Regional Planning and Ph.D. (Geography & Planning) from University of Texas-Austin. She was Visiting Professor at the University of Ghana, 2013-14. She is a Fulbright Scholar and founding member of the African Studies Association of Africa (ASAA). Her current research focus is the Global African Diaspora.

Kenneth Metzker
Adjunct Lecturer, School of Theatre and Dance, College of the Arts

Kenneth Metzker began his musical studies in classical piano from age 4-16. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Music Performance as a Percussionist from the University of Kentucky under the direction of James B. Campbell.

He began his Afro-Cuban/Brazilian folkloric studies with Michael Spiro at age 15, which led him to study with many other notables in the Afro-Cuban genre around the United States. He traveled to Matanzas, Cuba to study Afro-Cuban folkloric music with the world renowned Los Muñequitos de Matanzas. His work has taken him to Cuba, Brazil, Europe, and the Caribbean as a performer, instructor and student.

He spent time in the northeast of Brazil collaborating and performing with various bands and dance companies, including Cia. Vata, Caravana Cultural, and Dona Zefinha, with whom he performed in Recife and Olinda, Pernambuco for Carnaval. He was a Percussionist-In-Residence at schools in Guaramiranga, Ceara, Brazil, Fortaleza and throughout state of Ceara, Brazil (2005). He has taught at the University of Whitewater summer percussion workshop, University of Tennessee, Martin as a Guest Teaching Artist (2005), at past “Rhythm Explosion” workshops in Bozeman, Montana(2004-2010), and at the University of Alaska, Anchorage, Jazz Week (2005+2013), where he collaborated and performed with Rebeca Mauleon and Jimmy Branley. He has worked as a dance accompanist in numerous settings, including the Florida Dance Festival, New World School of the Arts(2005-2018), Brazz Dance Theatre(2005-present), Young Arts regional event in Miami, and Soul to Sole Tap Festival , Austin, TX, collaborating with choreographer Katherine Kramer (2004). Kenneth was a participant in the Third World Marimba Competition in Stuttgart, Germany(2002) and had an original Afro-Cuban composition premiered with the University of Kentucky percussion ensemble at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention (2001). He has performed at the Jackie Gleason Theatre in Miami, Florida for the “Annual Brazilian Film Festival” as part of the awards ceremony, with Shakira on the Jimmy Kimmel show and the Bank Atlantic Center in Florida and as as a performer and workshop instructor at the Grassroots festivals in New York/North Carolina/Miami. He played in the official music video for the 2014 FIFA World Cup with Jennifer Lopez and Claudia Leitte. Kenneth has taught in the Miami school system with Arts for Learning, Guitars Over Guns, and many other after school programs in Miami-Dade County. Kenneth lived and worked as a free-lance musician in Miami recording, performing and teaching from 2005-2018. He currently has worked at the University of Florida since 2019 in the School of Theatre and Dance and the School of Music.

Porchia Moore
Assistant Professor, School of Art and Art History, College of the Arts

Dr. Porchia Moore is Assistant Professor (and rotating Department Head) of Museum Studies and affiliate faculty at the Center for Arts, Migration, and Entrepreneurship at the University of Florida. Formerly Curator of the "Spoken" rotating gallery of African American art and Inclusion Catalyst at the Columbia Museum of Art, Moore presents regularly at museum conferences such as AAM, MCN, Museums and the Web, AAAM, and others.

Moore coined the phrase, “The Inclusive Museum Movement” and has served as one of the original architects of Museums and Race, advisor to Museums as Site for Social Action, and is the co-creator of The Visitors of Color project. Dr. Moore holds a doctorate in Library and Information Science and a graduate certificate in Museum Management from the University of South Carolina and the McKissick Museum.

A critical race scholar examining the role and function of race in museums and cultural heritage institutions, Moore is an IMLS Laura Bush 21st Century Cultural Heritage Informatics Leadership Fellow. Her work interrogates the intersections of race, critical cultural heritage, communities, technologies, and identities in museums. Her recent book is "Transforming Inclusion in Museums: The Power of Collaborative Inquiry" published by Rowman & Littlefield.

John Geofrey Mugubi
Associate Professor; Communication, Media, Film and Theatre Studies (Kenyatta University)

John Mugubi is an Associate Professor of Dramatic Arts at Kenyatta University. He has more than twenty years teaching experience.

Mugubi holds B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of Nairobi and a PhD from Kenyatta University. Until recently, he served as the Dean, School of Creative Arts, Film and Media Studies at Kenyatta University. He has published extensively in Film and Drama. He focuses on Playwriting, Screenwriting, Dramatic Theory and Film Genres. Mugubi chairs the Kenya International Theatre Festival Board of Trustees.

He is currently the Vice Chair, CILECT Africa Regional Association Council. Prof. Mugubi is also the current Chairman, Kenya Film Lecturers and Instructors Association. He is a member of the Advisory Board for Multichoice Talent Factory; a film academy for the East African Region. As a Producer and Screenwriter, Mugubi has produced more than 100 TV Dramas, documentaries and short Films. Prof. Mugubi has acted in and directed countless plays at the University and at his church where he is also a choir member. As an academic mentor, Prof. Mugubi has successfully supervised more than Seventy (80) M.A. and Ph.D Candidates.

Rich Pellegrin
Assistant Professor, School of Music, College of the Arts

Rich Pellegrin’s research examines the significance of the Salzerian analytical tradition with respect to both the classical and jazz idioms. He has presented research at numerous regional, national, and international conferences.

His work has been published in Jazz Perspectives, Intégral (forthcoming), ZGMTH (Journal of the Society for Music Theory, Germany), Engaging Students: Essays in Music Pedagogy, the Journal of Schenkerian Studies, and The Conversation; published in volumes by the University of Florida Press (forthcoming), Vernon Press (forthcoming), Cambridge Scholars Publishing, and KFU Publishing House; and featured in the NPR segment The Academic Minute. Pellegrin recently served as Guest Editor of a special issue of Jazz Perspectives devoted to John Coltrane.

As a jazz pianist, composer, and bandleader, he has released five albums on Origin Records. His record Down was reviewed in Downbeat Magazine, which described "moments of absolute bliss" and wrote, "Pellegrin does as the great pianists do, supplying encouragement and graceful touches in the background, before diving forward to take solos that are by turns florid and cracked, balletic and modern." He is currently working on a multi-volume solo project, the second disc of which will be released in 2022.

Sarah Politz
Assistant Professor; School of Music, College of the Arts

Sarah Politz's work focuses on creative practice in African and Afro-diasporic music, particularly in the context of popular music and new African diasporas in Europe and North America. She is currently working on a book project about sound, spirituality, and migration in the lives of brass band and jazz musicians from Republic of Benin, West Africa, where she has been conducting fieldwork since 2007.

Sarah completed her PhD in ethnomusicology at Harvard University in 2017, and she also holds an MA in ethnomusicology from Wesleyan University (2011), and a BM in jazz studies and a BA in English from Oberlin College and Conservatory (2007). Before coming to UF, she taught at the University of Pittsburgh and Williams College. Sarah performs actively as a jazz trombonist in several groups, including the Theodicy Jazz Collective.

Alireza Pourreza
Biological and Agricultural Engineering (UC Davis)

Dr. Alireza Pourreza is an associate professor of extension in the Biological and Agricultural Engineering department and the Digital Agriculture Lab director at the University of California, Davis. Dr. Pourreza leads research and extension education in digital agriculture, remote sensing, precision agriculture, and mechanization. Dr. Pourreza’s research program focuses on solving immediate challenges in crop production systems identified by stockholders. His lab develops practical and data-driven decision-support tools that help farmers increase profit while decreasing waste and environmental footprint.

Heidi Powell
Director of Graduate Studies in Art Education Online, Associate Professor of Art Education, School of Art and Art History, College of the Arts

Dr. Heidi C. Powell is Associate Professor of Art Education and Director of the MA Art Education Online in the School of Art and History at University of Florida. She has authored several book chapters and journal articles, and is currently serving as a Fulbright Scholar to the Domincian Republic.

María Rogal
Professor; Design & Visual Communications; Professor, School of Art and Art History, College of the Arts

María Rogal’s trans-cultural background and perspective influence her work, in which she explores the potential of design and visual communication to positively shape the human experience.

She founded Design for Development (D4D) to co-design with indigenous entrepreneurs in rural Mexico and subject matter experts on grassroots economic development projects. By co-designing with clients as partners, she finds it is possible to develop products and strategies relevant to the context and constituents. Her intent, to this end, is to orient the design discipline toward methods and socially conscious outcomes that are sustainable and responsible. Most recently, she co-founded Codesigning Equitable Futures with Dori Griffin and Laura Gonzales.

With Raúl Sánchez, Professor Rogal co-authored the chapter “CoDesigning for Development” in The Routledge Handbook of Sustainable Design, edited by RB Egenhoffer, London: Routledge Press (2018). She is the recipient of several grants, including a Sappi “Ideas That Matter” grant (with Gaby Hernández), the inaugural American Institute of Graphic Arts Design Research Grant, and three Fulbright grants. She shares her work on design methods and pedagogy at conferences, including the AIGA H3 Biennial Conference, the AIGA New Contexts/New Practices Social Economies thread, GLIDE ‘10: Global Interaction in Design—where she was awarded best paper—and at MX Design Conference: Social Impact of Design (Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City). Her article “Identity and Representation: (Yucatec) Maya in the Visual Culture of Tourism” was published in the Latin American and Caribbean Ethnic Studies Journal, and she was one of 24 international educators to contribute to the  Icograda Design Education Manifesto Update.

Professor Rogal’s creative design work has appeared in national and international juried exhibitions in the UK, Hungary, Cuba, Venezuela, Mexico, and the US. In the past, she has worked as a senior designer for Sapient (Atlanta) on the design of large-scale websites for international clients, including the Dutch bank ING, and worked at other design agencies as well as with the US Government. She served on design juries, including Design Incubation’s Communication Design Educators Awards program from 2016–2020, chairing the program in 2018 and 2019. 

In addition to her roles with the School of Art + Art History and CAME, Professor Rogal is affiliate faculty with the Center for Latin American Studies. She received her MFA in Design/Visual Communications from Virginia Commonwealth University. Prior to that, she studied Political Science at Villanova University where she received her BA. She later studied design at the University of Maryland as a post-bac student to begin her career in design. 

Kishau Rogers
Entrepreneur, Systems Thinker, Computer Scientist

Kishau Rogers is an award-winning technology entrepreneur on a mission to amplify human capability and solve the world's increasingly complex problems with computer science, systems thinking, and creative intelligence. She is the Founder & CEO of Time Study Inc. and owner of the innovation agency bigThinking and its lab Websmith Studio.

Her work is featured in many leading publications, including Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, CNN Business, and Black Enterprise. She holds a Computer Science degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and has over 25 years of technology and entrepreneurial experience.  

As the CEO of Time Study, Kishau is the first Black woman in Virginia to raise millions in venture capital to scale her tech startup. Time Study serves many of the top health organizations in the US, empowering leaders with intelligent tools to build a better future for work by optimizing how time is spent and creating more value for the enterprise's greatest resource, people. 

Kishau is completing a book project which provides a transformative framework for navigating complexity and solving wicked problems through the intersection of systems thinking principles, human creativity, and artificial intelligence. Her research reveals how arts & culture must inspire and inform engineering best practices. Her latest project explores integrating tech entrepreneurship and embodiment practices to guide discovery & ideation, to scale impact, and navigate pivots. As humanity becomes increasingly more dependent on technologies that are narrowly guided by economic impact, the goal is to offer a human-centered innovation toolkit that elevates human creativity, integrates extraordinary human practices, and that (ultimately) expands the universe of people solving the world's most challenging problems. 

Kishau is the recipient of numerous awards, including Virginia Commonwealth University's Distinguished Alumni in Computer Science, NAWBO Wells Fargo STEM award, Lyn McDermid Community Impact Award, and the Entrepreneur of the Year Award presented by Microsoft.  

In her commitment to diversity in entrepreneurship and STEM, she advises organizations like Level Up Ventures, AI for Afrika, Embodiology, and VCU's Department of Computer Science. In addition, she served as an advisor for the first U.S. White House Hackathon for Foster Care (Think Of Us) and is a co-founder of SheHacks Africa, WAAW Foundation's software engineering program for women & girls in over three African nations.  

To learn more about her work, visit

Esther F Romeyn
Center for European Studies

My work is broadly interdisciplinary, and borrows from Memory Studies, Critical Race Studies, Holocaust Studies, Jewish Studies, Postcolonial Studies, Migration and Nationality Studies, Political Philosophy and Performance Studies.

I currently teach courses with a regional focus on Europe and a thematic focus on: The politics of Holocaust Memory, Urban Studies, Migration Studies, Refugee Studies, Critical Theory and the Politics of Culture.

My publications converge around an interest in the importance of narratives in ordering political realities and forging collective identities. I decipher the narratives embedded in collective memory practices, Holocaust memory, migration debates, the representation of migrants and refugees in media and film, and trace the intellectual genealogies, ideational fault lines and power struggles of which they are the expression.

Andrew Rosenberg
Assistant Professor; Department of Political Science, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Andrew Rosenberg studies international relations and political methodology with substantive research interests in race in international politics, human security, and the economic effects of international migration. Much of Dr. Rosenberg’s work uses quantitative techniques to study the illicit and socially undesirable aspects of international politics and political economy.

His book manuscript under review unmasks and explains the persistence of racial inequality in international migration. His research has appeared in the American Journal of Political Science,Political Analysis and International Studies Quarterly.

His methodological interests include Bayesian statistics, causal inference, and computational modeling. In addition, Dr. Rosenberg has an article in Political Analysis (co-authored with Austin J. Knuppe and Bear F. Braumoeller) that develops a unified framework for studying asymmetric hypotheses.

Dr. Rosenberg received a Ph.D. from the Ohio State University, an M.Sc. (Research) from the London School of Economics in International Relations, and a B.A. from the Johns Hopkins University in International Studies and Political Science.

Colleen Rua
Assistant Professor; School of Theatre + Dance, College of the Arts

Dr. Colleen Rua is Assistant Professor of Theatre Studies at The University of Florida. Her research interests include Latinx Theatre, Immersive Theatre, the American Musical, and Theatre for Youth.

Her current book project explores the relationship between performance, trauma and healing in commercial and community-engaged representations of Puerto Rico. She works closely with the San Juan-based Y no habia luz theatre collective as she considers the role of artists as responders to (un)natural disaster.

José Valentino Ruiz
Assistant Professor; Area Coordinator of Music Business & Entrepreneurship, School of Music, College of the Arts

A trailblazing arts entrepreneur with business expertise for continuity, lead generation, leverage & scalability, translatability, and impact, Dr. José Valentino Ruiz is 1) Founder & Creator Director of JV Music Enterprises and 2) Resident Media Composer at Hayden5.

Preeminent awards in business, music, television, arts entrepreneurship, and communication arts including: Fast Company®’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies Award; Inc. Magazine’s Power Partner® Award; Emmy® Award; two Latin Grammy® Awards; four Latin Grammy® Award Nominations; Global Genius® Award; five Global Music® Awards; fifty-three Downbeat Music® Awards; Dove® Award; Davey® Award; AVA Digital® Award; GFA® International Composer Award (for “Elohim”), and many more. Ruiz is the Co-Editor for the flagship journal, “Artivate: A Journal of Entrepreneurship in the Arts” and has published in the Journal of Arts Entrepreneurship Education, International Journal of Community Music, Journal of Popular Music Education, National Association for Music Education, Association for Popular Music Education, Billboard Magazine, Medium Magazine, All About Jazz, Canvas Rebel Magazine, Voyage Magazine, and more. Ruiz has given 1400+ concerts & 50+ university residencies; and produced 120+ albums & 30+ documentaries. Ruiz is the Area Coordinator of Music Business & Entrepreneurship at the School of Music (since 2019).

Emrah E. Sahin
Senior Lecturer; Associate Instructional Professor, Center for European Studies, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Emrah Sahin is a specialist in state formations, international operations, and ethno-religious interactions with a particular interest in modern encounters in the Global South. He received his Ph.D. from McGill University and is the recipient of an SSHRC Award in Canada (Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council), an SHF International Research Award in Turkey (Sabanci Humanities Foundation), and the Teacher of the Year Award at the University of Florida. 

Emrah's first book Faithful Encounters is an archive-driven narrative of the Muslim-male-centralist responses to Christian-family-evangelical enterprises in Ottoman lands from Greece to Syria -- and is critically acclaimed in scholarly venues such as Humanities Network and Journal of World Christianity. He also edited volumes on cultural exchanges, language pedagogies, and a non-fiction graphic novel, and published peer-reviewed articles in journals such as the Journal of Historical Sociology (“Myth of the Eternal State”). While on a Global Fellowship at the University of Florida, he embarked on a second major research project simultaneously tracing Muslim travelers, Kurdish massacres, and the morality dialectics that gained currency in post-1870 periodicals housed in Istanbul, Cairo, and Asfahan. His projects funded by the Center for Arts, Migration, and Entrepreneurship (CAME) include an interview-powered study of mixed-race patterns and practices at the University of Florida and a localized look at local water wells established by foreign entrepreneurs in specific parts of Africa. 

Emrah Sahin is currently an Associate Instructional Professor in the Center for European Studies, an advisory board member in the Center for Global Islamic Studies, an affiliate faculty member in the Department of History as well as the CAME, a college-wide student advisor, and the coordinator of Department of Defense-funded Global Officer Program in Swahili and Turkish. Dr Sahin offers classic, novel, and transdisciplinary area-studies courses and honors reading seminars such as Modern Middle East, A History of God, Global Cities, and Soccer Culture. 

Kelley Sams
Adjunct Assistant Professor; Center for Arts in Medicine, College of the Arts; and Senior Postdoctoral Researcher, Institute of Research for Development and Laboratoire Population Environnement Developpement (LPED), Marseille, France

Kelley Sams, BFA, MPH, PhD, is Adjunct Faculty at the University of Florida's Center for Arts in Medicine (CAM) and Courtesy Faculty with the Center for Arts Migration and Entrepreneurship (CAME). She is a graduate of UF College of the Arts with a BFA in photography.

Kelley was previously a researcher in social anthropology and global health at the Norbert Elias Center/CNRS/EHESS in Marseille, France and a Fulbright-Hays fellow and Peace Corps volunteer in Niger, West Africa. As an applied medical anthropologist, her research takes place at the intersection of the social sciences, global health, and the arts. Kelley's recent work engages the arts and other qualitative methods to study the circulation of public health communication in the US, France, and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Rachel Silveri
Assistant Professor; School of Art + Art History, College of the Arts

Rachel Silveri is an Assistant Professor in the School of Art + Art History at the University of Florida. She specializes in the history of early twentieth-century European art, with a particular interest in feminist thought and theories of the avant-garde.

She is currently at work on a book manuscript which reexamines the avant-garde ambition to unify art and everyday life through a set of experimental life practices established by artists across Dada, Simultanism, and Surrealism.

Manuel Simons
School of Theatre + Dance, College of the Arts

Dr. Simons is an actor, director, playwright, producer, educator, researcher, and Assistant Professor of Acting and Performance at UF’s School of Theatre and Dance. Their areas of expertise are theatre for social justice and culturally relevant theatre pedagogy. Their research examines how theatre teaching artists employ drama instruction in K-16 classrooms to respond to the lived experiences, including experiences of race and racism, cultural knowledge, and racial critical consciousness of Black and Brown students. Their directing credits include Suzan-Lori Parks’ El Silencio Grande at The Public Theater, Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye and Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird for The American Place Theatre, Lysistrata at Nuyorican Poets Café, Unlikely Cowboys at The Provincetown Playhouse, and Still Life for The Living Theatre. Acting credits include national tours of Driving Miss Daisy, Murder at Café Noir, their original solo play Queer in the U.S.A., and international productions of Moliere’s Don Juan and Queer in the U.S.A. Screen credits include Academy Award-winner Spike Lee’s feature film She Hate Me (opposite Academy Award-winner Chiwetel Ejiofor), Law & Order, Sex and the City, and The Sopranos. Producing credits include the Emmy-nominated PBS television series In the Life, devoted to accurate and inclusive representation of the LGBTQ+ community, and benefit performances for health and human service organizations serving the LGBTQ+ community and people living with HIV and AIDS. Dr. Simons is a member of Actors’ Equity Association and the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. They completed undergraduate and graduate training at NYU and earned a Ph.D. from Fordham University.

Thomas Simsarian Dolan
Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies (Emory University)

Thomas Simsarian Dolan is an ACLS Emerging Voices Fellow in Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies at Emory University. He recently completed a year as a Fulbright U.S. Teaching Scholar in History at American University in Cairo, after receiving degrees from George Washington University, Yale and NYU. His research has been supported by the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research. American Geographical Society, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Institute for Middle East Studies, Dr. Philip M. Kayal Fund for Arab American Research, Bentley Historical Library, among others. Thomas has published extensively in academic and popular arenas, served as a visiting researcher at the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies, and is a Board Member on SAG-AFTRA’s National MENA Committee, Co-Coordinator of the “Critical SWANA Studies” section of the Association for Asian American Studies, and Founding Member of the Armenian American Action Network.

Ariel D. Smith
Center for Entrepreneurship (Wake Forest University)

Dr. Ariel D. Smith is an entrepreneur and academic professor whose work has been centered in Black community and economic advancement for the past decade. She has been a consultant for municipalities, nonprofits, small businesses, startups, and higher ed institutions. Dr. Smith is an Assistant Teaching Professor of Entrepreneurship at Wake Forest University. Currently, Dr. Smith’s research examines the experiences and representation of African Americans within the food truck industry. Her podcast The Food Truck Scholar and book Before You Launch a Food Truck have been recognized by local, national, and international platforms including The Guardian, The Museum of Food and Drink, Whetstone Magazine, Cuisine Noir Magazine, and the Coalition for Food and Health Equity. In 2021, she was named a top 15 Black Culinary Trailblazer by TimeOut Magazine. She holds a PhD in American Studies from Purdue University and a Master of Education in Learning, Diversity, and Urban Studies from Vanderbilt University. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Management with a Human Resource concentration from the University of Alabama at Birmingham Collat School of Business with distinction in Global and Community Leadership.

Augusto Soledade
Associate Professor; School of Theatre and Dance, College of the Arts

Augusto Soledade, a 2008 Guggenheim Fellow, is the Founder Artistic Director and resident choreographer for Augusto Soledade Brazzdance in Miami.

In the fall of 2018, Professor Soledade was nominated for the USA Artist Fellowship. In 2016, he was awarded for the seventh time the Miami Dade Choreographer’s Fellowship from the Miami Dade Cultural Affairs. In 2012 Professor Soledade was awarded the prestigious Knight Arts Challenge Grant in support of the Miami Dance Mecca Project, an initiative implemented by Augusto Soledade Brazzdance to boost Miami’s reputation as an emerging center for contemporary dance. Also in 2012, he was awarded, for the second consecutive time, the 2012 Individual Artist Fellowship from the State of Florida Division of Cultural Affairs.

He received his M.F.A in Dance from SUNY Brockport in 1998. Also in 1998, he received the Pylyshenko-Strasser Graduate Dance Award and was the finalist in the dance category for the 1998 Thayer Fellowship. A native of Bahia, Brazil, Professor Soledade started his dance training at the Federal University of Bahia, Brazil in a program with strong modern dance emphasis, and has trained with Garth Fagan and Clyde Morgan. He also holds a degree in journalism from the Federal University of Bahia.

Anita Spring
Professor Emerita; Department of Anthropology, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Anita Spring, Professor Emerita of Anthropology and former Associate Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, has a bachelor’s (Chemistry) from the University of California, Berkeley, masters (Anthropology) from San Francisco State and Cornell Universities, and a PhD (Anthropology) from Cornell University.

She served as President of the Retired Faculty of the University of Florida. She is Affiliate Professor with the Center for African Studies and CAME. She served as Chief of Women in Agricultural and Rural Production at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations.

She conducted research and projects on ritual and health care (Zambia, 3 years), gender and agricultural development (Malawi, 2 years), anti-famine crops (Ethiopia, 2 years), and in ten countries on Entrepreneurship from micro to medium size to global. She has also directed R&D in Jamaica (environment), St. Lucia (agriculture), Native Americans (kinship), and Archaeology (European settlements). She has written 11 books and 70 articles. She was inducted into the Explorers Club as National Fellow in 2020.

As CAME Affiliates, she and Dr. Barbara McDade helped produce CAME faculty’s first conference “Arts. Migration, and Entrepreneurship” and currently are working on CAME’s first book: Arts Entrepreneurship in Africa, the Diaspora, and Beyond! with individual CAME faculty.

István Tarrósy
Professor; Africa Research Center, Department of Political Science and International Studies (University of Pécs)

Dr. István Tarrósy is Full Professor of Political Science and Director of the Africa Research Center, Department of Political Science and International Studies, University of Pécs.

He is Visiting Professor at the Faculty of Political Science and International Relations, Jagiellonian University of Kraków, Poland, where he teaches in the ISAD MA Program. He is head of the Doctoral Program in International Politics in Pécs. He is member of the China–Africa Working Group (CAWG) at the University of Florida, where he was Fulbright Fellow in 2013-14. His work is published in African Security, African Studies Quarterly, PLoS One, Journal of Geography in Higher Education, Society and Economy, Politics in Central Europe, Eastern Journal of European Studies, European Spatial Research and Policy, Africa in Fact. István is Editor-in-Chief of the Hungarian Journal of African Studies (HJAS).

Ariadna Tenorio
Center for Latin American Studies

Ariadna is from Puebla Mexico where she studied law and worked in the field of education and human rights. She lived briefly in Comala while studying for her PhD in Social Sciences at the University of Colima. Her dissertation "Mujer, locura y derecho en tres novelas mexicanas contemporáneas" earned her a scholarship to continue her studies at the University of Kansas where she obtained a PhD in Spanish and Portuguese.

Welson Tremura
Professor; School of Music, College of the Arts; Center for Latin American Studies, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Welson Tremura (musicologist – guitarist – singer) is a Ph.D. in musicology-ethnomusicology from Florida State University and currently serves as a Professor in the School of Music and the Center for Latin American Studies at the University of Florida.

Dr. Tremura is also the Associate Director for the Center for Arts, Migration, and Entrepreneurship, and the Director for the Florida-Brazil International Linkage Institute. Dr. Tremura’s main research focuses on music and religion as expressed in folk Catholicism traditions of folia de reis or the Three Kings celebration in Brazil. Additional research areas include the usage of digital technology in performance and global technology and the inclusion of world music as a core discipline and collaborative method for teaching and collaboration. His new book Chapter: "Folia de Reis: an Afro-Brazilian Experience in Rural Brazil with "Understanding America: the Essential Contribution of Afro-American Music to the Sociocultural Meaning of the Continent" a book publication to be released in the Spring of 2022.

Dr. Tremura’s academic assignments include a series of projects to expand music and performance scholarship to create opportunities for students, faculty, and artists to collaborate nationally and internationally. His academic career has been building collaborative relationships between various units at the University of Florida to create new and unique programs to facilitate interdisciplinary projects, such as composing music to foster creativity and innovation Dr. Tremura’s Brazilian Music Institute (BMI) is the result of a grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and supported by the UF School of Music, Broward College, UF Center for Latin American Studies, UF Center for World Arts, Art Serve, U.S. Department of Education Title VI Program and Visit Gainesville, are Dr. Tremura’s artistic excellence and most acclaimed annual event. Since 2001 the Institute in the month of May features daily rehearsals and group lessons in Brazilian instrumental and vocal music, as well as, two concluding concerts with international outstanding Brazilian artists. Dr. Tremura maintains an updated video channel available on Youtube ( and Vimeo (

Fatimah Tuggar
Associate Professor; School of Art + Art History/AI, Animation, Drawing, Digital Media, Extended Realities, Interactive Media, Performance Art, Photography, Sculpture, Sound, Video, Methodologies of Critical Cultural Studies & Social Art Histories

Interdisciplinary artist Fatimah Tuggar was born in Nigeria and raised there and in the United Kingdom. Tuggar uses dialogue and discovery among disciplines and cultures as central approaches of artmaking. She interrogates the impact of technologies. Her strategy is to be imaginative, adaptive, provocative, a culture jammer and resistor if necessary. Challenging the segregated borders of aesthetics and cultural perceptions and facilitating diverse ways of knowing, making, and contributing is critical to her approach.  

Her work uses technology as both medium and subject to serve as metaphors for power dynamics. She combines objects, images, and sounds from diverse cultures, geographies, and histories to comment on how media and technology diversely impact local and global realities. Her work has been widely exhibited at international venues in over twenty-five countries. Tuggar’s art education covers three continents and a broader range of disciplines, traditions, processes, and materials. She has been a recipient of several fellowships including a W. A. Mellon Research Fellowship from Franklin Humanities Institute at Duke University, the Civitella Ranieri, Umbertide, Umbria, Italy, and a Guggenheim Creative Arts Fellowship.

Margarita Vargas-Betancourt
George A. Smathers Libraries

Margarita Vargas-Betancourt is the Latin American and Caribbean Special Collections Librarian at the University of Florida. She obtained a Ph.D. and an MA in Latin American Studies from Tulane University, and a B.A. in Hispanic Literature and Language from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Margarita uses her background on colonialism to identify and highlight the hidden voices in archives and to serve and empower Latino students at UF. She is member of the first cohort of the Mellon RBS Fellowship for Diversity, Inclusion & Cultural Heritage. Her co-authored publication “Contesting Colonial Library Practices of Accessibility and Representation” in the book Archives and Special Collections as Sites of Contestation obtained the 2022 LASA Archives Section Award for Best Article. Her latest publication is the co-edited volume Collective Creativity and Artistic Agency in Colonial Latin America.

Melvin Earl Villaver, Jr., Ph.D.
Joint Appointment: Performing Arts and Interdisciplinary Studies (Clemson University)

Melvin Earl Villaver, Jr., is a Hip Hop artist and scholar, honing his expertise in both Blues Epistemology and music production. His journey led him to earn a Ph.D. in American Studies from Purdue University in August 2023. Presently, he holds the esteemed position of Assistant Professor of Music and Global Black Studies at Clemson University, a role he commenced during the fall of 2023. Drawing from almost two decades of music production and songwriting acumen, Dr. Villaver intricately weaves together the practical nuances of Black Musical technical skill with the rich tapestry of theoretical and historical foundations in his research and teachings.

Melissa White

Melissa Mae White (PhD) is an Instructional Assistant Professor for Engineering Innovation Institute with the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering at the University of Florida. Dr. White develops and instructs course curriculum in Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship to both undergraduate and graduate students.

She works with faculty and students to build creativity, develop an innovative mindset, promote innovation, and support entrepreneurial endeavors across campus and the local community. Dr. White has served four years on the Board of Directors for startGNV, a local 501c3 supporting the innovative ecosystem in the Greater Gainesville area. She has orchestrated several events inspiring entrepreneurship and innovation across the local higher education institutions and the community.   

Dr. White received her Bachelor of Science degree in Biomedical Engineering with a minor in Anthropology from the University of Miami and her Master of Science degree in Engineering, Science, Technology, and Entrepreneurship from the University of Notre Dame. She earned her doctorate in Industrial and Systems Engineering and a Certificate Health Systems Engineering from North Carolina State University. Prior to joining UF, Dr. White helped co-found the non-profit the Medical Innovators Collaborative (MEDIC) aimed at creating an environment where students across the universities in the Research Triangle could collaborate with clinicians and industry partners to foster medical innovations. 

Antoine Williams
Assistant Professor; School of Art + Art History, Dancing, College of the Arts

Antoine Williams is an interdisciplinary artist who is heavily influenced by speculative fiction, critical Black studies and his working-class upbringing in Red Springs, North Carolina. An artist-educator, Antoine received his BFA from the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, and his MFA from UNC Chapel Hill.

He has exhibited in a number of places, including at Smack Mellon Brooklyn, the Mint Museum of Art, Michigan State University, Columbia Museum of Art, 21c Museum, Elsewhere Museum, Prizm Art Fair, The McColl Center of Art and Innovation, the California Museum of Photography as well as many other venues. He has taken part in residencies at The Center for Afrofuturist Studies, The Hambidge Center, and the Joan Mitchel Residency in New Orleans. Williams’ was also a part of the 2021 Drawing Center viewing program, He is also a recipient of the 2017 Joan Mitchell Award for Painters and Sculptors and the 2018 Harpo Foundation Grant Award. His work is in the collection of the Nasher Museum of Art and the North Carolina Museum of Art. Williams is an assistant professor of art at the University of Florida.

Trent Williams, Jr.
Associate Professor; School of Theatre + Dance, College of the Arts

Trent D. Williams, Jr. is an Associate Professor of Modern Dance + Choreography in the School of Theatre and Dance. He is an affiliate faculty member of the Centers for Arts in Medicine, Arts, Migration and Entrepreneurship at the University of Florida where he has taught since 2014.

Mr. Williams has also served as a faculty member at the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC), University of Trinidad & Tobago, Howard Community College, Howard University Division of Fine Arts and Johns Hopkins Estellle Dennis/ Peabody Dance Training Program for Boys. Additionally, he is a consultant for the Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, National Endowment for the Arts, and MAP Fund. Recently awarded the UF 2020 Superior Accomplishment, 2019-2022 UF Provost’s Term Professorship, 2018 UF Excellence Award for Assistant Professors, and 2018 International Educator. In addition, Williams was selected as one of “40 under 40” by The Gainesville Sun.

Mr. Williams was a founding member of Urban Souls Dance Company in Houston, Texas and he has been a guest artist with Tallahassee Ballet in Tallahassee, FL, EDGEWORKS Dance Theatre in Washington, DC. Additionally, Mr. Williams has performed alongside Destiny’s Child, 112, and Janelle Monae among others. In 2007, Mr. Williams was invited to dance with Dayton Contemporary Dance Company (DCDC) in world-renowned works by Talley Beatty, The Stack Up (1992) and Eleo Pomare, Las Desenamoradas (1987), Donald Byrd, Rodney A. Brown, William B. McClellan, Jr., Debbie Blunden-Diggs, Shonna Hickman-Matlock and Bill T. Jones.

His creative research focused on the African diaspora, inclusive of Latinx traditions, Caribbean traditions and African-American traditions. Inspired by literature, history, cinema, and current events, he seek material that reveals the universality of the human condition, including social inequalities and how they impact our changing world. His current dance film, Black Stains, in collaboration with filmmaker, Tiffany Rhynard, will help people to better understand the complex issues that intersect in the lives of black men in America. This dance film has been recognized nationally at the Sans Souci Festival of Dance Cinema in Boulder, Colorado and internationally at the London International Screendance Festival, just to name a few. His choreography has been performed by The Tallahassee Ballet, Dayton Contemporary Second Company, Texas Tech University, Towson University, University of Trinidad & Tobago, Coker College Dance Company, Urban Souls Dance Company, and has been showcased at The American Dance Festival, The American College Dance Festival, The Modern Atlanta Dance Festival, The Dance Gallery in Huntsville, Texas, and Kennedy Center: Millennium Stage.

Williams a native Houstonian recieved his MFA in Dance Peformance & Choreography from Florida State University and BA in Psychology from Morehouse College.

Amelia Winger-Bearskin
Associate Professor of AI and the Arts; Digital Worlds Institute/Digital Arts and Sciences, Banks Preeminence Chair

Amelia Winger-Bearskin is an artist who innovates with artificial intelligence in ways that make a positive impact on our community and the environment.

She is a Banks Family Preeminence Endowed Chair and Associate Professor of Artificial Intelligence and the Arts, at the Digital Worlds Institute at the University of Florida.  She is the founder of the UF AI Climate Justice Lab and the Talk To Me About Water Collective.  She founded Wampum.Codes which is both an award-winning podcast and an ethical framework for software development based on indigenous values of co-creation. was awarded a Mozilla Fellowship embedded at the MIT Co-Creation Studio from 2019-2020 and was featured at the 2021 imagineNative festival. She continued her research in 2021 at Stanford University as their artist and technologist in residence made possible by the Stanford Visiting Artist Fund in Honor of Roberta Bowman Denning (VAF) .  

In 2022 she was awarded a MacArthur Foundation Award as part of the Sundance AOP Fellowship cohort for her project CLOUD WORLD / SKYWORLD which will be part of the Whitney’s Sunrise/Sunset series in late fall 2022.

In 2019 she was a delegate at the Summit on Fostering Universal Ethics and Compassion for His Holiness, The 14th Dalai Lama,  at his World  Headquarters in Dharmsala India.The non-profit she founded IDEA New Rochelle, in partnership with the New Rochelle Mayor’s Office, won the 2018 $1 Million Dollar Bloomberg Mayor’s Challenge for their VR/AR Citizen toolkit to help the community co-design their city.  In 2018 she was awarded the 100k Alternative Realities Prize for her Virtual Reality Project: Your Hands Are Feet from Engadget and Verizon Media.

Amelia is Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) of the Seneca-Cayuga Nation of Oklahoma, Deer Clan on her mother’s side and her late father was Jewish/Baha’i

Sharon Wright Austin
Political Science

Sharon Wright Austin is Professor of Political Science at the University of Florida. Her research focuses on African-American women’s political behavior, African-American mayoral elections, rural African-American political activism, and African-American political behavior. She is the author of Race, Power, and Political Emergence in Memphis (Garland 2000); The Transformation of Plantation Politics in the Mississippi Delta: Black Politics, Concentrated Poverty, and Social Capital in the Mississippi Delta (State University of New York Press 2006); The Caribbeanization of Black Politics: Race, Group Consciousness, and Political Participation in America (State University of New York Press 2018); Beyond Racial Capitalism: Cooperatives in the African Diaspora (Oxford University Press 2023 and co-edited with Caroline Shenaz Hossein and Kevin Edmonds). and most recently Political Black Girl Magic: The Elections and Governance of Black Female Mayors (In Production, Temple University Press 2023). She has also published several book chapters and articles and is the co-lead editor of the American Political Science Review.

S. Ama Wray
Professor at the University of California, Irvine, Co-principal investigator of the Africana Institute for Creativity, Recognition and Elevation in the School of the Arts and Humanities

Dr S. Ama Wray is a TEDx Speaker and Professor at the University of California, Irvine, serving in both the School of the Arts and Humanities, where she is also the co-principal investigator of the Africana Institute for Creativity, Recognition and Elevation, alongside Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o and Tiffany Willoughby-Herard. 

She is also allied with the Center for Integrative Movement Science in the School of Biological Science. She received her Ph.D. in Dance Studies from the University of Surrey in the UK. As a National Endowment for Science Technology and the Arts Fellow her exploration into performance and technology led to the creation of Texterritory – an interactive cell-phone performance platform. Innovations continue through AI 4 Afrika, an initiative she co-founded with choreographers, data scientists, scholars, and entrepreneurs in 2020.

An award-winning artist, working Wray has collaborated with artists including: Wynton Marsalis, Bobby McFerrin, Mojisola Adebayo and Nicole Mitchell. A guest artist at many institutions including: United Nations, Geneva, Princeton, Harvard, Institute of Advanced Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Temple, University of Ghana, Legon and UC Berkeley. Wray’s examinations of West African cultures led to the creation of Embodiology® - a transformational methodology based on West African principles of human communications. Embodiology's distinctive concepts, profiled at the Center for Neurobiology for Learning and Memory, have shown efficacy in elevating vitality, wellbeing resilience and creativity.

Stemming from this - Joy in Motion created at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic supports everyday people transform their indoor isolation into spaces of 'co-liberation'. As a necessary part of the development of this work Wray gives back to the Kopeyia Village community in Ghana. The Susan Samueli Integrative Health Institute also includes Wray’s Vitality in Motion program within their Wellness Services and have awarded a pilot grant to study its affects. She has given keynotes for Dance USA, World Dance Alliance and the California Black Health Network. She has written chapters entitled, Embodiology® - A Hybrid Neo-African Improvisation-as-Performance Practice distinguished by Dynamic Rhythm, in the Oxford Handbook of Dance Improvisation (2019) and Just after the Pulse, Rhythm Takes All: The Inside Habitat of Improvisation, in, Black Routes (2016). Her subject monograph is to be published by Routledge, London.  

Ying Xiao
Associate Professor; Global Chinese Studies, Film and Media Studies at the University of Florida

Dr. Ying Xiao is an associate professor of global Chinese studies and film and media studies at the University of Florida. She received her Ph.D. from Cinema Studies at New York University.

Her teaching and research interests primarily concentrate on Chinese-language films (mainland, Taiwan and Hong Kong), Chinese and Asians in the global context, Classical Hollywood cinema in the sound era, popular music, youth culture, sound studies, theories of globalization and transnationalism, Buddhism and film, and the discourse of gender and sexuality. She is the book author of China in the Mix: Cinema, Sound, and Popular Culture in the Age of Globalization (University Press of Mississippi, 2017) and has published many articles on neoliberalism and Chinese film industry, hip hop culture, Chinese rock ‘n’ roll film, documentary and transcultural media production. Before joining the University of Florida, she was involved in a series of TV and documentary productions.

She has participated in the curatorship of Reel China Documentary Film Festival since 2004 and co/organized “DV China and Social Change” film series and workshop in 2011, “Sound of China: Folklore, Rock ‘n’ Roll, and Chinese Hip Hop” symposium in 2013, “Shanghai in a Global Context: Cinema, Media, and the Crossing of Imaginations” workshop in 2017, and “Gender, Disability, and the Chinese Muslim’s Encounters with Cultural Traditions and a Modernized World” colloquium and film series in 2019, and “Labor, Love, and Homecoming: Towards a Trans-Asian and Global-Cultural Sisterhood” symposium and screening in 2022. Dr. Xiao holds various visiting professorships and fellowships in Fudan University, Yangzhou University, Xiamen University, Zhejiang University, and so on. She sits on a variety of editorial boards and serves as a reviewer for important academic journals, presses, grants, and awards. She has actively partaken in and facilitated a number of international film festivals and also been extensively interviewed and featured at many national and international news and media outlets. 

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