Assistant Professor


College of the Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences


Department of History



Bizzini Hall B118H

Ph.D., History, University of Colorado, Boulder, 2018
M.A., History, San Francisco State University, 2004
M.A., Religious Studies, University of Colorado, Boulder, 1997
B.A., Religious Studies, University of California, Santa Cruz, 1993

Modern US History
Public History
Oral History
Digital History
US Immigration and Ethnic History
US Immigration Policy History
Mexican American History

History 2600 - Problems in U.S. History
History 3720 - U.S. Ethnic and Immigrant Past
History 4010 - Practicing Local History
History 4710 - Mexican American History
History 4950 - Selected Topics (Introduction to Public History; Oral History; Digital History)

My current research focuses on U.S. immigration policy history and the human experience of, especially, undocumented immigrants and people detained by U.S. immigration regimes (the Immigration and Naturalization Service and, more recently, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement) in the post-WWII era. My work engages with new scholarship on mass incarceration and seeks to provide needed history in efforts to dismantle and re-envision the US carceral state. Key to my work has been the use of international archives, interviews, oral histories, and digital humanities. As the former head of a small university-civic partnership called the Realities of Undocumented Immigrants Oral History Project at the University of Nevada, Reno and as a result of my dissertation research, I am practiced at creating oral and public-facing history.

“Spawning a Hydra: The Policy and Practice of Immigrant Caging in Postwar America,” book proposal in preparation, by invitation to University of Pennsylvania Press.

Essays in Edited Volumes
“Separating and Caging Immigrant Families: Case Studies in South Texas from the Postwar Era through Trump’s Reign of Terror” in Violence, Migration, and Detention during Trump’s Reign of Terror and Beyond, Arturo J. Aldama and Jessica Ordaz, editors. Submitted.

Journal Articles
“Building Trust with Undocumented Narrators,” Oral History Review, in preparation.

“Reconstructing and Assessing Longitudinal Data on US Immigrant Detention, 1951-2017: Average Daily Population, Total Detentions, and Length of Stay,” Historical Methods: Journal of Quantitative and Interdisciplinary History, in preparation.

“Valley of Caged Immigrants: Punishment, Protest, and the Rise of the Port Isabel Detention Center,” Tabula Rasa, Special Issue: The Rise of the Border Industrial Complex: Biopolitics, Economics, Rights, Culture, 33 (January 2020), 225-269.

“Revitalization Movements: The Problems of AIM, Women, and Mazeways,” Ex Post Facto: Journal of the History Students at San Francisco State University, 12, Spring 2003.

Book Reviews
“Boats, Borders, and Bases: Race, the Cold War, and the Rise of Migration Detention in the United States, by Jenna M. Lloyd and Alison Mountz,” in Journal of American Ethnic History, 38:3 (Spring 2019), 110-112.

“African Roots, Brazilian Rites: Cultural and National Identity in Brazil, by Cheryl Sterling,” in Journal of Third World Studies 32:1 (Spring 2015).

“Blowout! Sal Castro & the Chicano Struggle for Educational Justice by Mario T. Garcia and Sal Castro” in The Oral History Review 39:2 (Sum/Fall 2012), 338-40.

Encyclopedia and Database Articles
“Chicanisma/Xicanisma and the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s and 1970s: From Frustrated Roots to an Enduring Legacy.” in Enduring Questions: Latino American Experience, Kim Kennedy-White, ed. New York: ABC-Clio, 2014.

“The Alamo,” “Popé,” “Pueblo Revolt,” “Antonio López de Santa Anna,” “Latinos and Latinas in Santa Fe,” “Taos Rebellion,” “Tejano Revolt” in Encyclopedia of Latino-American History, D. Figueredo, ed. New York: Facts on File, 2011.

“Manuel Antonio Chaves,” “Hispano/Hispana,” “Latinos in New Mexico,” in Encyclopedia of Latino-American History, Danilo Figueredo, co-author and editor. New York: Facts on File, 2011.

Panels Organized
“Building Trust with Undocumented Narrators,” Listening Session. Oral History Association, October 2021.

“U.S. Immigration and Labor Policy during the Long Age of Restriction: Unimagined Complications and Responses at the Borders and in the Fields,” American Historical Association (panel co-sponsored by the Immigration and Ethnic History Society), January/April 2021.

“Enduring, Negotiating, Interrogating Liminality: Migrants and Immigrants at the Border, in Detention, and in Agricultural Labor since 1882,” American Historical Association, Pacific Coast Branch, March 2021.

“Disrupting Popular Periodizations of U.S. Immigration Policy: Shifting Ideas of Mexican Immigrants' Early Twentieth Century Exclusion and Reception,” Conference on Latin American History / American Historical Association, January 2017.

Papers Accepted/Presented
“INS Depictions of Mexican Detainees v. Realties of Confinement in South Texas during the Bracero Program, 1942-1964,” AHA Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington, January/April 2021.

“Caged Outside of the US Immigration Enforcement Regime for Unlawful Entry: Conditions of Confinement for Undocumented Immigrants in Pretrial Detention, County Prisons, and Federal “Shadow Prisons,” Liminal Existences, Migrant Resistances Conference, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI, March 2021.

“Fighting the Extremes of Liminality: The Case Against Deprivation of Parole and Indefinite Detention in US Immigration Law,” AHA Pacific Coast Branch Meeting, Portland, Oregon, August 2020.

“The Enclaves of Central American Trans Resistance in Forced Displacement in Mexico,” Roundtable Session, Law and Society Conference, May 2019.

“Critical Geography and Immigrant Caging in the US: A Case Study of Immigration Law and Practice in South Texas,” Law and Society Conference, May 2019.

“Mandatory Immigrant Detention in the U.S.: Iterations, Variations, and Consequences from 1980 to the Present,” Borders and Bridges: Culture, Politics, and Resistance in the Americas Conference, Midwest Association for Latin American Studies Annual Meeting, October 2017.

“Conflicting Visions? INS ‘Humane’ Detention in the Face of Increasing Border Security, 1952-1980,” Migrations et Frontières aux États-Unis: Discours, Représentations, Imaginaires / Migrations and Borders in the United States: Discourses, Representations, Imaginary Contexts, Université Grenoble Alpes, March 2017.

“The Escalation of Crimmigration, Detention, and Removals during the Era of ‘Humane’ INS Enforcement, 1961-1969,” American Historical Association (AHA) Annual Meeting, January 2017.

“Juan Crow Policy Talk: Executive Branch Discourse on Immigrant Detention, 1981-1989,” Rocky Mountain Interdisciplinary History Conference (RMIHC), University of Colorado, September 2016.

“Expanding INS Interior Power 1965-1996: Local Immigrant Community Responses to Detention in South Texas,” Immigrant America Conference: New Immigration Histories from 1965 to 2015, University of Minnesota, October 2015.

“Before Mass INS Detention in Brownsville: Undocumented Migrants Navigating Crossroads of Power,” AHA Pacific Coast Branch Meeting, Sacramento, California, August 2015.

“The First U.S. Privatized Immigrant Detention Centers: Local Immigrant Community Responses in Texas,” Fifth Conference on Immigration to the U.S. South, University of Florida, October 2014.

“Nineteenth-Century Criminalization of Mexicanos: Zorro’s ‘Brother’ Joaquín Murieta, Heterogeneous Author Identity, and the Unfinished Conquest of the American West,” RMIHC, University of Colorado, September 2014.

“Zoot Suits and American State Violence Against Non-White Peoples in the 1940s,” James A. Rawley Graduate Conference in the Humanities “Public and Private Memory: Understanding the Collective Past,” University of Nebraska, Spring 2013.

“Cutting Against the Hegemonic Grain: Mexican-Americans, Anti-Communism, and Effective Labor Organizing in New Mexico’s 1950-52 Empire Zinc Strike,” RMIHC, University of Colorado, September 2012.

“Emergence of a Hidden Minority: Brazilian Immigrants, Performing Arts, and Sports in the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley,” From Strawberries to Software: Immigration in the Silicon Valley, San Jose State University, April 2008.

“The Social Construction of African American Womanhood: Anna J. Cooper,” Northern and Central California Conference of Phi Alpha Theta (History Honor Society), Spring 2002.

“Beyond Mother-Centered Political Identities: Popular Chilean Women’s Movements Under Pinochet,” History Student’s Association, Annual Conference, San Francisco State University, Spring 2001.

Invited Talks
“The Role of U.S. Civil Society in the Integration of Immigrants: Realities of Immigrants in the U.S.,” U.S. International Visitor Leadership Program, Northern Nevada International Center and Meridian, October 25, 2021.

“Crimmigration in the US: A Historical Perspective, a Detention Case Study, and Implications for Mexico / ‘Crimmigration’ en Estados Unidos: Una Perspectiva Histórica, un Estudio de Caso de Detención e Implicaciones para México,” Centro de Investigaciones Sobre América del Norte, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, July 31, 2018.

“Contradictory Enforcement Ideals: The Developing Immigrant Detention Industrial Complex and the Demise of U.S. INS Visions of Humane Policy, 1954-1988,” Borders and Borderlands: Culture, Society, and Economics During Changing Times, Symposium, Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, April 2017.

“Resisting the Expansion of U.S. INS Detention, 1981-1996: The Mexican Consulate’s Programa de Protección and Community Partnerships in the South Texas/Mexico Gateway Region,” Tinker Grant Research Forum, Latin American Studies Center, University of Colorado Boulder, March 2016.

“Building Trust with Undocumented Narrators,” Listening Session. Oral History Association, October 2021.

“Influential American Women,” History Program Research Conference, Front Range Community College, Spring 2016. “American Material Culture,” RMIHC, University of Colorado, Fall 2014.

“Gender, Activism, and Memory: Representations of Latin America,” RMIHC, University of Colorado, Fall 2011.

Mentor, Pack Research Experience Program, UNR Office of Undergraduate Research, Fall 2021, Spring 2022

Dissertation Fellowship, Center for Humanities and Arts, CU Boulder, Fall 2017-Spring 2018

Best Should Teach Silver Award, Graduate Teacher Program, CU Boulder, Fall 2013, Fall 2016

Moody Research Grant, Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation, Spring 2016

Graduate Student Award, Center to Advance Research and Teaching in the Social Sciences, CU Boulder, Spring 2016

Tinker Foundation Field Research Grant, Latin American Studies Center, CU Boulder, Fall 2015

Beverly Sears Graduate Student Research Grant, Graduate School, CU Boulder, Summer 2015