As a medical anthropologist, I conceptualize body, health, illness, and healing as evolving products of socio-cultural and historical contexts. Promoting health entails addressing its biomedical and sociocultural components. Social inequity and health disparity permeate most cultural contexts. I trace inequity-health dynamics in populations marginalized on the basis of gender, age, race, ethnicity, income, health, nationality, employment, maternity/paternity, and sexual orientation.

In work spanning three decades in non-profit, academic, and government positions, I have used various methods to explore diabetes, reproductive health, gender relations and violence, household production of health, elder health and care, participatory research methods, social capital, domestic service, and youth risk and preventive behavior.

My early work focused on research in Mexico. Subsequently, in Colorado, I used public health planning to prevent illness and address inequity. I then dove into chronic and communicable diseases (primarily type 2 diabetes and COVID) in racial/ethnic minorities in California. I currently focus on engaging trained community health workers in outreach, research, and education. Ultimately, I aim to promote social equity through health, and health through social equity.

Lifework | Biosketch | Medical Anthropology