2024 Speaker

Dr. Cheryl E. Matias was recently awarded the 2020 Mid-Career Award for her work on racial justice in teacher education at the premier organization, American Educational Research Association. She is a full professor in the School of Leadership and Education Science at the University of San Diego. Her research focuses on race and ethnic studies in education with a theoretical focus on critical race theory, critical whiteness studies, critical pedagogy and feminism of color. Specifically, she uses a feminist of color approach to deconstruct the emotionality of whiteness in urban teacher education and how it impacts urban education. Her other research interest is on motherscholarship and supporting women of color and motherscholars in the academy.

A former K-12 teacher in both South Central, Los Angeles Unified School District and Bed-Stuyvesant, New York City Department of Education, she earned her bachelors in cultural communication from University of California San Diego, teaching credential at San Diego State University, and her master’s in social and Multicultural Foundations at California State University, Long Beach. She earned her doctorate at UCLA with an emphasis in race and ethnic studies in education. She delivers national talks and workshops on whiteness, racial justice, and diversity. She was awarded the 2014 American Educational Research Association’s Division K (Teacher Education) Innovations in Research on Diversity in Teacher Education Award and the 2015 and 2017 Colorado Rosa Parks Diversity Award.  In 2015, she was awarded Excellence in Research by the School of Education & Human Development at University of Colorado Denver. In 2016 she was awarded the university’s 2016 Graduate School’s Dean Mentoring Award. In 2018 she was ranked as the top 25 women in higher education making a difference in the journal, Diverse: Issues in Higher Education. Some of her publications can be found in top tiered journals such as, Race, Ethnicity, and Education, Teachers College Record, Equity and Excellence, and Journal of Teacher Education.

Her first solo-authored book entitled Feeling White: Whiteness, Emotionality, and Education earned the 2017 Honorable Mention for the Society of Professors of Education. Her second book, Surviving Becky(s): Pedagogies for Deconstructing Whiteness and Gender, came out January 2020 and was nominated for the AESA book award. Her third book Critical Theoretical Research Methods in Education came out May 2021 and her fourth book coedited with Dr. Paul Gorski on White Liberalism, The Other Elephant in the Classroom, will be published by Teachers College Press and out September 2023. She is a motherscholar of three, including boy-girl twins, a runner, yogi, an avid Lakers and Dodgers fan, and Bachata ballroom dancer.