Education
Bio
Info
B.A. Sociology, California State University, Los Angeles
M.A. Social Science (specialization in Family Therapy), Phillips Graduate Institute
Ph.D. Sociology, University of California, Los Angeles

My education and work experience also led to licensing as a Marriage and Family Therapist and certification as a Family Life Educator. And I've trained and worked in mediation and as a facilitator for National Days of Dialogue.

Academic Experience: 

In addition to courses at SRJC, I have taught Sociology at Sonoma State and UCLA, through UCLA Extension (in person and on line), and at UC San Diego. Class topics have included Introductory Sociology; Race and Ethnicity; the Sociology of Aging; Group Process; Sociology of Mental Illness; and Medical Sociology. In each class, students are encouraged to see aspects of our social world in a new way, through a sociological lens.
I've learned a lot from teaching, not only from the materials we cover in a particular course but also from the insights students bring to them. I've enjoyed getting to know and working with thousands of amazing students, many who regularly transcend challenges of all kinds to pursue their education. I've learned a lot from their perspectives on the many topics we've considered together.

When I began college as an undergraduate, I was not at all clear about what I wanted to study. I think I selected three majors just in the first two years! Then I took an introductory sociology class at my local community college and was immediately hooked by the way it helped me see the world in a new way. I earned a Bachelor's degree in sociology...then a Master's in social science, with a specialization in family therapy...and eventually a Ph.D. in sociology. Whether you're considering majoring in Sociology yourself (perhaps wondering where that might lead you...?) or just taking a Sociology class for interest or to satisfy a requirement, I welcome the chance to get to know you and explore our social world through a sociological lens.

I've lived in Sonoma County since 2006 (ask me about our dramatic exit from LA!), currently with my husband and a border-collie-retriever mix (Foxy). I'm very happy to be part of the Santa Rosa community.

Professional Areas of Interest: 

As a sociologist, I've had the chance both to teach at the college level and to conduct research. My work has usually focused on micro-level interactions, especially through the lenses of ethnomethological, phenomenological, and observational sociologies. Most of my own research projects have utilized interpretive, qualitative methods, especially ethnography and in-depth interviewing. But I've also enjoyed opportunities to participate in the collection and analysis of survey data -- in one case on multi-generational families; in another on college students and campus life.

The topics I've explored most extensively include the sociology of professions; race and ethnic relations; medical sociology, including the sociology of mental health & illness; and aging and the life course.

Presentations and Publications: 

My academic publications and presentations have been related to the study of mental health professions, research on aging families, and college student and campus life. I have also been a co-author and/or co-editor (along with colleagues in the Sociology Writing Group) of six editions of A Guide to Writing Sociology Papers (Worth Publishers).