JOAQUÍN
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Michelle Cruz Gonzales
Author, educator, Chicana, drummer and lyricist of feminist punk band, Michelle teaches English and Creative Writing at Livermore's Las Positas College. Originally from Tuolumne City, via East LA, Michelle lives in Oakland with her family and their Mexican dogs.

Mick Founts, Ph.D.
Mick Founts —currently San Joaquin County Superintendent of Schools— has spent more than 30 years in education. He likes agriculture, music, sports, antiques, old historic buildings, but his passion is writing.

Dean McFalls
Born in Seattle, Dean has lived, worked, and served in a wide variety of locations and vocations. As a missionary, he served three years in Mexico, ministered twenty years in the Stockton Diocese as a Catholic seminarian and priest. Currently, he's returning to the field of education and helping to raise his son, Gabriel.

Maritza Mendez, DMD
Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of the Pacific's ArthurA.Dugoni School of Dentistry, Pacific Dental Care Clinic Advanced Education in General Dentistry Program, Stockton Campus

Roxanne Ocampo - Quetzal Mama
Ocampo is a College Admissions Coach and author of “Flight of the Quetzal Mama: How to Raise Latino Superstars and Get Them Into the Best Colleges” (2012) and “Nailed it! How to Nail the College Essay” (2014). She is a doctoral student at UC San Diego, and holds a Masters Degree in English.

Thomas Block
Now retired, Block researches and writes about the threat and impact of corporate interests on human health and the environment. He holds a M.S.in Cultural Anthropology, was Adjunct Professor at Youngstown State University in Ohio, and cofounder of the Native American Cultural Exchange Committee.

Richard Soto
Tracy native and Vietnam veteran Richard Soto may be a semi-retired school counselor, but his real passion is literature and the neglected history of Latinos in the U.S. Soto holds the most complete Latino/Hispanic book, music and artifacts’ collection in San Joaquin County.

Max Vargas
Peruvian-born Vargas is a University of the Pacific graduate who works as Legislative Assistant to California Senator Cathleen Galgiani.

Arnoldo Torres
Pacific graduate Arnoldo Torres, former national CEO of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is a journalist and legislative consultant based in Sacramento, CA. He played a significant role on the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986.

Patricia H Kushlis
Doctor in Political Science, served the US Foreign Service in Washington and overseas, was a Professor at the University of New Mexico and has followed New Mexico politics since 1998.

David Wellenbrock
A semi-retired criminal defense attorney, Wellenbrock served the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s Office for many years, as public defender and, eventually, chief deputy district attorney.

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