Faculty, Staff and Indigenous Community Representatives

Department of Art and Art History

  • Carol Damian, Ph.D is (Emeritus) Professor of Art History in the School of Art and Art History and the former Director and Chief Curator of the Patricia and Phillip Frost Art Museum at Florida International University. She received her MA in Pre-Columbian Art and Ph.D. in Latin American History. She teaches classes in Pre-Columbian, Colonial, Spanish and Contemporary Latin American Art, Modern Art surveys and Women in Art.

Department of Biology

  • Maria-Luisa Veisaga, Ph.D. Vice Chair of the Global Indigenous Forum.
    Senior Teaching Lab Specialist in the School of Integrated Science and Humanity. A Quechua from Bolivia, her research focuses on the chemical properties of medicinal plants.

Department of Dietetics and Nutrition

  • Marcia Magnus, Ph.D. Associate professor in the Department of Dietetics and Nutrition at FIU since 1991. Formerly, she was a public health nutritionist at the United Nations Caribbean Food and Nutrition Institute, which offered technical assistance in nutrition to 21 Caribbean countries. Her research focuses on cross-cultural nutrition, readability of nutrition education materials, weight perception, barbershop nutrition education and drug-nutrient interactions.

Department of Earth and Environment

  • Dr. Jim Riach has a Ph. D. in Anthropology, is the Director of Honors College Summer Fieldschool to the Amazon. His research includes interconnections between ecosystems and human well-being of Indigenous peoples of the Ecuadorian and Peruvian Amazon.
  • Dr. David Bray has Ph. D. in Anthropology, is the Director of the Institute for Sustainability Science in Latin America and Caribbean Center. His work includes Indigenous land use and forest management in Mexico, Central America and globally.
  • Thomas Pliske Ph.D. Lecturer Emeritus in the Dept. of Earth and Environment, and also the Department of Religious Studies. Author of numerous articles in scientific journals and the books, "Light, Truth and Nature" and "A Himalayan Hope and a Himalayan Promise." Teaches the course "Spirituality and Sustainability" (REL-3161) that has significant Indigenous content.

Department of English

  • Dr. Martha Schoolman has her Ph.D. in English from the University of Pennsylvania and specializes in 19th Century American Literature. She regularly teaches special topics classes on Native American Literatures and literary environmentalism. Professor Schoolman’s research examines the literature of social reform connected to the transnational antislavery movement and its cultural afterlives.

Department of Global and Sociocultural Studies

  • Dr. Mitzi Uehara Carter has a Ph.D. in Anthropology. Her research interests include race and militarization in Okinawa, Japan. She is the Interim Director of the Global Indigenous Forum and a founding and contributing member of the Global Indigenous Podcast Network.
  • Dr. Juliet Erazo has a Ph.D. in Anthropology and Environmental Studies. Her research focuses on Indigenous governance and cultural change in the Ecuadorian Amazon. For the last two decades, she has collaborated with the Kichwa people of the Pueblo Kichwa de Rukullakta, a large Indigenous territory in Ecuador.
  • Dr. Katherine Lineberger has a Ph.D. in Sociology. Her experience centers on program and population analysis. Some of her teaching and research interests include Native women’s rights and urban issues.
  • Dr. Rod Neumann has a Ph.D. in Geography. His interests include the co-constitution of nature, society and landscape as well as the political economy of the environment. His research includes National Parks and Indigenous people of California and Africa.
  • Dr. Genevieve Reid has a Ph.D. in geography. Her work in critical GIScience and Indigenous mapping focuses on Indigenous geospatial data sovereignty and the next-generation mapping technologies that consider non-western ways of mapping, transferring knowledge, and conceptualizing the world. She collaborates with the Eastern Cree in Northern Quebec.
  • Dr. Dennis Wiedman Founding Director of the Global Indigenous Forum.
    Ph.D. in Anthropology. His interests include Native North America and global Indigenous rights to health and religion. His research ranges from the Miccosukee of South Florida to the Inuit of the Alaskan Arctic with much of his work in Oklahoma with the Delaware, Plains Apache, and Cherokee. As a medical anthropologist he specializes in social and cultural causes of Type II diabetes.

Department of History

  • Dr. David Cook (Emeritus) has a Ph. D. in History. One of his major publications centered on the catastrophic impact of European diseases on Native North and South Americans as well as other aspects of Spanish and Indigenous contacts on Peru and Ecuador.
  • Dr. Sherry Johnson has a Ph.D in History. Some of her research and teaching interests include Caribbean and Florida history as well as environment, climate change and hurricanes and disaster in the Caribbean basin.
  • Dr. Jenna Gibbs, with a Ph.D. in History, has research interests situated in the Atlantic and global world with a focus on transnational interrelationships of religion, culture, politics and imperial/indigenous relations from the 1750s to the 1850s.

Department of Modern Languages

  • Masako Kubota, M.A. in Asian Studies. She is adjunct instructor, Asian Studies Programs and visiting instructor in the Department of Modern Languages. She specializes on the Ainu, the Indigenous peoples of northern Japan. Her research focuses on how Ainu elderly women maintain their cultural heritage. She teaches courses in Japanese language, culture, literature, and cinema.

Department of Religious Studies

  • Dr. Anna Bidegain has a Ph.D. is the current program director for Research at the Latin American and Caribbean Center. Her main research themes revolve around society, politics and the presence of women in Latin American Christian History and the Religious Experience of Indigenous, Latin American and Caribbean migrants.
  • Mary Louise Pfeiffer has an LL. M degree. She is a Faculty Fellow of the Honors College and Adjunct Professor of the Department of Religious Studies. Her teaching interests and research include Native American Women, World and Native American Religions, Healers and the Miami Circle.
  • Dr. Andrea Seidel is Professor Emeritus in the Religious Studies Department. She retired on May of 2014 and may still teach classes on her research interests such as Native American dance, music and religion.

School of Journalism and Mass Communication

  • Leonardo Ferreira, Ph.D., J.D. is a Worlds Ahead Scholar in International Communication. His research focuses on comparative media policy, community communications, and journalism history including indigenous media since pre-Columbian times.

Department of Teaching and Learning

  • Rebecca Christ, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor in Social Studies.

Law School

  • Manuel Gomez
    Indigenous Rights and Law. Environmental law. Ecuador.

Women and Gender Studies

  • Dr. Michaela Moura-Koçoglu has a Ph.D. in Postcolonial Literatures. Her research interests include Indigenous Women’s Studies with a focus on the Pacific; Gender Dynamics of Globalization in Postcolonial Literature; and Lusophone & Anglophone African Women Writers. She is the author of Narrating Indigenous Modernities: Transcultural Dimensions in Contemporary Māori Literature (2011).

Visiting Faculy

  • Bina Sengar, History. Fulbright Visiting Scholar August 2018 to May 2019 with FIU Global Indigenous Forum. Assistant Professor of History at Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar University of Aurangabad, India. Specializes on Indigenous peoples history in South Asia through global perspectives. Our alliance for Indigenous studies in India and South Asia. http:/

Miami-Florida Jean Monnet European Center of Excellence

  • Dr. Lukas Danner has a Ph.D. in International Relations and is a Research Associate at the Miami-Florida Jean Monnet Center of Excellence, FIU, and Fulbright-NSF Arctic Research Scholar at the Centre for Arctic Studies, Institute of International Affairs, University of Iceland.teaches a range of courses at the Department of Politics and International Relations, FIU, including Politics of Western Europe, International Relations of Scandinavia and the Arctic, International Relations of East Asia, and Conflict, Security, and Peace in IR, among others.

FIU Museums

  • Frank Luca, Historian, Archivist
    Chief Librarian at Wolfsonian Museum
    Indigenous contact with Spanish Missions in North Florida

FIU Staff and Support Units

  • Althea Silvera., Dept. Head. Special Collections and University Archives. FIU Green Library
  • Jeannette Cruz, Multicultural Programs and Services. Student Affairs

Indigenous Community Representatives

  • Rubi Hurtado, Quechua. Kuyayky Foundation. FIU Alumni
  • Lee Tiger, Miccosukee
  • Houston Cypress, Miccosukee
  • Samuel Tommie, Seminole