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Mary Romero
BornNov 12, 1952 (1952-11-12) (age 68)
Denver, Colorado, United States
Alma materUniversity of Colorado
Known for110th President of the American Sociological Association
Spouse(s)Eric Margolis
AwardsJulian Samora Distinguished Career Award, ASA Latina/o Section (2012)
Founder's Award, ASA Section on Racial and Ethnic Minorities (2009)
Lee Founders Award, Society for the Study of Social Problems (2004)
Scientific career
InstitutionsArizona State University (1995-present)
University of Oregon (1991-1995)
San Francisco State University (1989-1991)
Yale University (1985-1989)
University of Wisconsin-Parkside (1981-1985)

Mary Romero (born 1952)[1] is an American sociologist. She is Professor of Justice Studies and Social Inquiry at Arizona State University, with affiliations in African and African American Studies, Women and Gender Studies, and Asian Pacific American Studies.[2] Before her arrival at ASU in 1995, she taught at University of Oregon, San Francisco State University, and University of Wisconsin-Parkside. Professor Romero holds a bachelor's degree in sociology with a minor in Spanish from Regis College in Denver, Colorado. She holds a PhD in sociology from the University of Colorado.[3] In 2019, she served as the 110th President of the American Sociological Association.[4]

Romero has received numerous honors and awards for her creative and scholarly works and her commitment to social justice and activism. She is a former Carnegie Scholar,[5] she was awarded the Lee Founders Award (2004) from the Society for the Study of Social Problems in recognition of her scholarship and social justice activism. In 2009, she received the Founders Award from the American Sociological Association's Section on Racial and Ethnic Minorities.[6] In 2012, she was awarded the Julian Samora Distinguished Career Award from the American Sociological Association's Section on Latina/o Sociology.

Using an intersectional lens and feminist legal framework, much of her research program centers on the study of reproductive labor, care-giving, and social inequality in the United States and abroad. More recently, her research has focused on questions of anti-immigrant sentiment and the rise of nationalism and racism against immigrants in the United States, rooted in structural oppression across race, gender, and citizenship.[7]

Early life

Romero was born on November 12, 1952 in Denver, Colorado, United States. She traces her ancestry to a Mestizo Mulatto indigenous Mexican-origin population who first arrived in New Mexico in the 1600s. Her parents were among the first to leave Mora County in Northern New Mexico. Following WWII, they moved to Denver, Colorado for the promise of work in new factories. Romerois a middle child of six children. Her mother worked as a domestic, cleaning houses, while her father worked at the Gates Rubber factory. Romero was the first child in her family born in a hospital, the first child to speak English as her first language, and was the first child in her family to attend college.[8]


Romero attended an integrated parochial high school in an effort to avoid the highly segregated Denver public school system; in 1973, Keyes v. School District No. 1, Denver argued that de facto segregation existed. Romero graduated high school in 1970.

She began college at the University of Colorado at Denver and soon transferred to Regis University, a private Jesuit college in Denver.[2] During college, Romero worked in the department of sociology part-time as an administrative assistant. Taking advice from faculty members there, many of whom were completing their PhD's at the University of Colorado, Boulder, she applied to their PhD program and was admitted.

During graduate school, Romero worked as an English as a Second Language (ESL) and adult general education teacher for the St. Vrain Valley School District, and also ran a youth employment program in Lafayette, Colorado. During her time in Lafayette, she worked with a community group that set up the first bilingual education program in the local school district. Romero met her partner, Eric Margolis, during graduate school. They married in 1985.

After graduate school in 1980, Romero worked for one year as a lecturer at the University of Texas, El Paso. She accepted a tenure-track position at the University of Wisconsin, Parkside, where she was an assistant professor. After four years, she left UW-Parkside to take the position of assistant dean at Yale College, where she also lectured in the Women's Studies and Sociology departments from 1985-1999.[9] In 1989, after a two-year Presidential Fellowship at the University of California, she accepted the position of Associate Professor and Department Chair of La Raza Studies at San Francisco State University.[9]

She went on to work at the University of Oregon, with visiting professorships at Macalester and Colgate. In 1995, she was appointed Professor of Chicana and Chicano Studies (now in the School of Transborder Studies) at Arizona State, and in 1997 moved her position to the School of Social Transformation, where she has worked until the present.[8]

Creative and scholarly works


Romero's contributions to the sociological canon began with Maid in the U.S.A., but since the publication of that work she has continued a prolific scholarly career. She is the author of Introducing Intersectionality (Polity, 2017), and the award-winning book, The Maid's Daughter, the 2012 Americo Paredes Book Award Winner and 2012 Outstanding Title by AAUP University Press Books.[10] She is the co-editor of Intersectionality and Entrepreneurship (Routledge 2019), Blackwell Companion to Social Inequalities (Blackwell 2005), Latino/a Popular Culture (NYU Press 2002), Women’s Untold Stories: Breaking Silence, Talking Back, Voicing Complexity (Routledge, 1999), [ Challenging Fronteras: Structuring Latina and Latina Lives in the U.S. (Routledge, 1997), and Women and Work: Exploring Race, Ethnicity and Class (Sage, 1997).She has also published dozens of peer-reviewed articles in social science journals and law reviews. Professor Romero was among the first sociologists to use critical race theory and LatCrit theory in the study of sociology.[11]

Selected articles

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Law reviews

Social science journals


  1. ^ "Mary Romero - Google Search". Retrieved 2019-09-05.
  2. ^ a b "Mary Romero | iSearch". Retrieved 2019-09-05.
  3. ^ "Mary Romero Takes Over as President of the American Sociological Association". Women In Academia Report. 2018-09-05. Retrieved 2019-09-06.
  4. ^ "Presidents". American Sociological Association. 2009-05-28. Retrieved 2019-09-05.
  5. ^ "Carnegie Foundation Selects Five Sociologists as Pew Scholars". Retrieved 2019-09-06.
  6. ^ "Mary Romero | iSearch". Retrieved 2019-09-06.
  7. ^ "Mary's Bio – Visual Ethnography". Retrieved 2019-09-07.
  8. ^ a b News, A. S. A. (2019-09-04), 2019 ASA Award Ceremony and Presidential Address, retrieved 2019-09-07
  9. ^ a b Romero, Mary (January 2013). "Curriculum Vitae". Retrieved Sep 6, 2019.
  10. ^ "The Maid's Daughter". NYU Press. Retrieved 2019-09-07.
  11. ^ "Introducing Mary Romero, 2019 ASA President". American Sociological Association. 2018-10-16. Retrieved 2019-09-07.