Dr. Cynthia Olivo


Dr. Cynthia Olivo has been a professional in higher education since 1995. For 23 years she has served in capacities including Dean, Associate Vice President & Vice President. This is her 16th year as an administrator including seven years at the university level and nine years in community college. Dr. Olivo serves as the Vice President of Student Services at Pasadena City College (PCC), serving 30,000 diverse students including 51% Latino, 27% Asian & Pacific Islander, 6% African American, 17% White and 43% first generation college students with 65% meeting low income guidelines. Her leadership qualities include leading innovation to improve student success, consensus building among stakeholder groups to advance student equity and creating an engaging, inclusive environment to foster change in our practices while emphasizing cultural competence.

6/18 9:00am - Opening remarks

6/18 3:45pm - Keynote

6/19 9:00am - Opening remarks

Dr. Cecilia Rios-Aguilar


Cecilia Rios-Aguilar is Associate Professor of Education and Director of the Higher Education Research Institute in the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at the University of California Los Angeles. Dr. Rios-Aguilar’s research is multidisciplinary and uses a variety of conceptual frameworks—funds of knowledge and the forms of capital—and of statistical approaches—regression analysis, multilevel models, GIS, and social network analysis—to study the educational and occupational trajectories of under-represented minorities. Dr. Rios-Aguilar’s research interests include critical quantitative research methods, big data, social media, community colleges, and educational policies. She obtained her Ph.D. in Education Theory and Policy from the University of Rochester, her M.S. in Educational Administration from the University of Rochester, and her B.A. in Economics from the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México [ITAM].

6/18 9:00am - Opening Remarks

Dr. Pedro Noguera


Pedro A. Noguera is a Distinguished Professor of Education at the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA and founder of the Center for the Transformation of Schools (CTS) at UCLA. His scholarship and research focuses on the ways in which schools are influenced by social and economic conditions and demographic trends in local, regional and global contexts. Dr. Noguera serves on the board of numerous national and local organizations and appears as a regular commentator on educational issues on CNN, MSNBC, National Public Radio and other national news outlets.

6/18 9:15am - Keynote: Action for Equity in California Community Colleges

Dr. Eloy Oakley


He is best known throughout California and the nation for implementing innovative programs and policies that help students succeed in college. Oakley strongly believes that California’s emerging economies demand a workforce with quality credentials and that the state’s 114 community colleges play a pivotal role in moving California forward. Under Oakley’s leadership, the Long Beach Community College District has received numerous awards and recognitions for its efforts to improve student completion rates.

6/18 11:45am - Keynote

Dr. Francisco Rodriguez


Dr. Francisco Rodriguez began his tenure as chancellor of the Los Angeles Community College District on June 1, 2014. Prior to his appointment as head of the nation’s largest community college district, Dr. Rodriguez served as superintendent/president at MiraCosta Community College District (Oceanside, CA) for five years and president at Cosumnes River College (Sacramento, CA) for six years. With 30 years of experience as an educator, faculty member and administrator within California public higher education, Dr. Rodriguez is a noted scholar and speaker on topics ranging from higher education, student access and success, governance and governing boards, to workforce development, fundraising and philanthropy. Dr. Rodriguez has dedicated his career to diversity, equity and inclusion issues and to outreach to underserved communities, particularly the development of young Latino and African American males.

6/18 11:45am - Keynote

Dr. Regina Deil-Amen


Dr. Regina Deil-Amen is a Professor of Higher Education and Sociology at the University of Arizona in the Center for the Study of Higher Education and Educational Policy Studies & Practice department in the College of Education. She is an expert on qualitative research methods, engaging 'micro' experiences as a prism for revealing and understanding the relevance of larger 'macro' structures. Dr. Deil-Amen received her Ph.D. in sociology from Northwestern University, where she directed a multi-site case study of how community colleges and private occupational (career/technical) colleges differentially structure institutional procedures to prepare students for sub-baccalaureate careers. Her co-authored book, After Admission: From College Access to College Success, details the findings of that project.

6/18 1:00pm - Activity: Becoming Culturally Responsive

Dr. Juana Mora


Dr. Juana Mora is a community college professor. She teaches Chicana/o Studies and Political Science at the Hispanic Serving Institution Rio Hondo College. Her research focus is community college faculty pedagogy using a funds of knowledge approach. She is presently exploring the correlation between equity-minded institutions and student success among historically disproportionately impacted student groups.

Dr. Christopher West


Dr. West is on the faculty of Pasadena City College, where his creative and dynamic teaching inspires students to delve deeply into the complexities of American history and grapple with both the aspirations and contradictions of the country's founding beliefs. Dr. West diversity and inclusion work began as an undergraduate at the University of California, Berkeley where he co-designed a multiple day diversity training for para-professional student employees that served as the residential life training model on that campus for over ten years.

6/19 9:15am - Keynote: Action Research for Classroom Transformation