Category: Cuba Week Speakers

Lisa Lindquist Dorr

Associate Dean of The University of Alabama College of Arts and Sciences, Lisa Lindquist Dorr graduated from the College of Wooster with her bachelors degree in 1988 and from the University of Virginia  with her doctorate in American history in 2000.  She published her first book, White Women, Rape, and the Power of Race in Virginia, 1900–1960, with the University of North Carolina Press in 2004.  Since 2000 she has been teaching both graduate and undergraduate courses on the history of the United States, American women, and the American South since the Civil War.  Her current research explores the smuggling of booze and other illicit cargoes from Cuba and the Caribbean to the American Gulf Coast during the 1920s.

Brooke Champagne

Brooke Champagne was born and raised in a bilingual home in New Orleans, Louisiana.  She is currently an instructor of English and the assistant director of the First-Year Writing Program at The University of Alabama.  Her essays appeared most recently in the Los Angeles Review, the New Ohio Review, and Bending Genre. She is at work on a memoir about her grandmother, Lala, from whom she learned much, including the Spanish language.

Juan M. López-Bautista

Juan López-Bautista is a professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, a curator of algae, and a College of Arts and Sciences Leadership Board Faculty Fellow at The University of Alabama. He received his Ph.D. in plant biology from Louisiana State University, a Master of Science degree in biology from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, and was a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Research Associate at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. He was recently elected as the 2013 president of the Phycological Society of America. He is the associate chair for research for the department and the advisor for the UA marine sciences undergraduates. His research focuses on the biodiversity, systematics, and phylogenomics of marine and terrestrial algae. His most recent project funded by the National Science Foundation is the assembling of the tree of life for green and red algae. He teaches courses in the biology of algae, plant biology, and advanced phycology. He is an avid worldwide explorer and algal collector

Daniel Avery Jr.

Daniel Avery is the director of Medical Student Admissions and medical director of the Laboratory for the College of Community Health Sciences at the University of Alabama. Previously, he was professor and chair of the college’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and professor and division chief of pathology in the Department of Surgery. In addition to obstetrics and gynecology, Avery is board-certified in family medicine obstetrics and forensic medicine. He received the 2009 Thomas Ebner Award from the American Academy of Medicine and the Association of Physician Specialists for founding the AmericanBoard of Family Medicine Obstetrics. Also that year, he was named a Distinguished Physician Leader by the American Board of Physician Specialists. Avery earned his medical degree from The University of Alabama School of Medicine. Following residency training in anatomical and clinical pathology, he completed residency training in obstetrics and gynecology at Carraway Methodist Medical Center in Birmingham. He also completed an addiction medicine fellowship at The University of Alabama Medical Center in Birmingham.

María Elena Díaz Sánchez 

María Elena Díaz Sánchez is an anthropologist with a doctoral degree in health sciences and post-graduate diplomas in sociocultural anthropology and information management. Díaz is the senior researcher and head of the Nutritional Anthropology Laboratory at the Nutrition and Food Hygiene Institute in Havana, and she is a full professor at the Medical University of Havana. Her current work includes research on nutritional status, growth and development, body composition, somatotype, menopause, aging, chronic disease risk factors, obesity, eating disorders in dancers, and anthropometric reference values for the Cuban population.

Vanessa Vázquez Sánchez

Vanessa Vázquez Sánchez is a biology professor at Havana University and an auxiliary professor of biological anthropology at the Montané Anthropological Museum. She studies demography, human biology, ontogeny, nutrition, health, disease, growth, and development. At Havana University, she received a bachelor’s degree in biology, a master’s degree in anthropology, and a Ph.D. in biological science. She has been teaching since 2002.

Michael K. Steinberg

Michael K. Steinberg is celebrating his tenth year at the Capstone. His research and teaching are focused on environmental conservation, cultural ecology, and habitat mapping. Steinberg works mainly in Central Americana and the Caribbean and has published on topics ranging from fisheries management to jaguar conservation. Steinberg has current projects mapping mangroves and sea grass in critical fishing landscapes in Campeche, Mexico, Belize, and the Zapata Peninsula in Cuba. Steinberg has five graduate students working in the aforementioned areas as well as two undergraduates working on a habitat-mapping project in the Himalayas. Steinberg teaches an array of courses including environmental studies, sporting conservation, world regional geography, and field studies in Belize.

Jesús M. Pajón Morejón

Jesús M. Pajón Morejón is a researcher-curator at the department of paleogeography and paleobiology at the National Museum of Natural History of Cuba. He has a degree in chemistry from Havana University and a Ph.D. in paleoclimate and geochemistry. Between 1978 and 1989 he worked at the National Centre for Scientific Research; from 1989 to 2004 he worked at the Institute of Geophysics and Astronomy in Havana; and from 2004 to 2011 he worked at the Cuban Institute of Anthropology as the head of the archaeological department. His research specialties are climatic changes, paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental reconstructions based on cave deposits, paleohurricane research, sea-level changes, karst geochemistry and hydrochemistry, cave and karst development, and geoarchaeology.

Cristina Isabel Díaz López

Cristina Isabel Díaz López received three chemistry degrees from Havana University between 1972 and 1988. She has taught at Havana University for more than 40 years, and she currently directs the Confucius Institute at Havana University. Her main research over the last five years includes but is not limited to understanding the structural characterization of the Martin Perez River’s sediments, studying the high blood tension of Cuban pregnant women, and developing analytical procedures to analyze heavy metals in water, sediment, and organisms.

Lourdes Alicia Diaz Fernández

Lourdes Alicia Diaz Fernández is a titular professor of chemistry. Since 1968, she has taught chemistry, biology, biochemistry, microbiology, geography and foodstuff, pharmaceutical sciences, and more. She has been invited as a guest professor to several universities in Spain, Italy, and Germany. She has also helped to develop Cuban studies programs at various institutions internationally and has organized committees for more than 50 international events.  Her main publications relate to education and calculations in computational chemistry.