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Ramona L. Pérez

Professor of Anthropology, San Diego State University

Ramona Pérez is Professor of Anthropology, Director of the Center for Latin American Studies, and Chair of the Aztec Identity Initiative at San Diego State University. She also is the Chair of the Institutional Review Board (2012 to present) and is graduate faculty in Global Health and Women’s Studies. Dr. Pérez has worked for more than 25 years on issues of gender and empowerment, lead poisoning among rural and indigenous people of Oaxaca, migration from Mexico and Central America to the US and Baja California, Interpersonal violence against women and children, structural violence and health, and identity among indigenous Mexicans and Latinxs on both sides of the US/Mexico border. Her publications are in English and Spanish and can be found in journals and manuscripts in the fields of anthropology, geography, public health, social work, criminal justice, and medicine. Dr. Pérez has held fellowships and research grants from the US Department of Agriculture, Tinker Foundation, Ford Foundation, National Science Foundation, and Department of Education. She employs mixed methods and has expertise in the area of qualitative and ethnographic research methods; she has published on the use of focus groups in a methods publication series. Dr. Pérez also serves as an expert witness on Mexico in the asylum courts and is a certified expert witness for the family courts in San Diego on binational youth identity. Her work has led to her election as the president of the American Anthropological Association (November 2021 to 2023), the largest association of anthropologists in the world.


  • –present
    Professor of Anthropology, San Diego State University