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MU Awards Faculty for Contributions to Diversity

February 26th, 2013

Story Contact: Nathan Hurst, 573-882-6217,

COLUMBIA, Mo. – The University of Missouri Chancellor’s Diversity Initiative has awarded three faculty members the 2013 MU Faculty Achievement Award in Diversity. This is an endowed award to be given annually to three faculty members whose work elevates diversity and inclusion on the MU campus. This year’s recipients are:

Demetrio Anzaldo González currently teaches courses in Spanish composition and conversation, Latin American literature, Mexican art and culture, and medical Spanish in the romance languages and literatures department in the College of Arts and Science at MU. He received a doctoral degree in Spanish at the University of California, Irvine. His first book, Género y ciudad en la novela Mexicana, was published by La universidad autónoma de Ciudad Juárez in Chihuahua, México. His current research areas focus on Mexican women writers, memory, myth, and social movements in Mexican arts. He continuously attends international conferences, and his critical essays have been published by literary journals in Costa Rica, Germany, Mexico, Spain, Venezuela, and the United States.

Astrid Villamil is a visiting assistant professor in the Department of Communication in the College of Arts and Science at MU. Before pursuing graduate studies, Villamil worked for two years in her native country of Colombia as a communication specialist, implementing training and development opportunities for employees in various corporate settings. Once in graduate school, she focused her research agenda on communication processes surrounding diversity in organizations. Her dissertation examined identity negotiation processes among Hispanic professors in U.S. higher education institutions. In addition, Villamil works with a grant team funded by the U.S. State Department that brings college women from countries in the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia to a leadership institute in the Midwest every summer to promote goodwill.

Antonio J. Castro is an assistant professor of social studies and teacher education in the Department of Learning, Teaching, and Curriculum in the College of Education at MU. His research interests include the recruitment, preparation, and retention of teachers for culturally diverse contexts and urban schools, as well as multicultural citizenship and democratic education. Prior to serving as an assistant professor, Castro taught in urban schools and worked in a variety of outreach and educational programs for low-income and minority populations. He currently teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in diversity and social studies education at MU. He also serves in a leadership role on the College of Education Diversity Committee and conducts workshops for teachers about diversity in local area schools.