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Roberto Rodriguez & Patrisia Gonzalez  

Syndicate Columnists

Patrisia Gonzales and Roberto Rodriguez have been writing the syndicated "Column of the Americas," distributed by Universal Press Syndicate, since 1994. The writers offer a unique perspective of the Americas on topics of general interest as well as highlighted issues that specifically affect the peoples of the continent.

Former residents of El Paso, TX, and Albuquerque, N.M., they were inducted into El Paso's 1997 "Writers of the Pass Hall of Fame" and received the 1998 Human Rights Award from the Albuquerque Human Rights office. In 1998, they served as University of California Regents lecturers at the University of California, San Diego. That same year, they uncovered a series of maps that have located the "Ancient Homeland of the Aztecs" in what appears to be present-day Four Corners Region of the U.S. Southwest. This revelation is now the subject of two documentaries, "Going Back to Where We Came from" and "In Search of Aztlan," as well as three forthcoming books. The subject of this research is now a class taught by them at UCLA (Spring, 2003).

A compilation of their columns, "Gonzales/Rodriguez: Uncut &Uncensored," was published by the Ethnic Studies Publication Unit at UC Berkeley in 1997. They recently edited, along with Cecilio Garcia Camarillo, Cantos Al Sexto Sol, a compilation of more than 100 writers.

Gonzales is the first Latina (Chicana-Kikapu-Comanche) syndicated columnist in the country. She has been a fellow with the Kellogg National Leadership Program, the Center for International Journalism at the University of Southern California, and a Freedom Forum professional-in-residence at the Department of Communication and Journalism at the University of New Mexico. She also has taught at the University of Texas - El Paso's Journalism Department.

Gonzales attended the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education and worked as a reporter for "The Philadelphia Inquirer," the "Tucson Citizen" and the "Corpus Christi Caller." She is a founding member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, Unity and a member of the Native American Journalists Association. Her book, "The Mud People: Chronicles, Testimonios & Remembrances," examines the emerging human rights movement in Mexico and the transformation of ordinary people when involved in social change.

As a survivor of sexual violence, she also conducts writing circles that incorporate meditation, journaling and natural medicine. She is considered a "self healer" after she healed herself from Chronic Fatigue Immune Disorder, using herbs, prayer and indigenous healing traditions. As a Kellogg Fellow, she explored community healing from around the world and is a practicing Buddhist as well as a practitioner in natural medicine.

Rodriguez began his journalism/writing career at "La Gente" newspaper at the University of California, Los Angeles in 1972. After winning a number of state and national writing awards in fiction in the mid-1970s, he wrote for several publications, including "Lowrider magazine," the "Eastside Sun" in Los Angeles and "La Opinion," the nation's largest Spanish-language daily. Before becoming syndicated, he also published columns

in "The Washington Post," "Los Angeles Times," "The Philadelphia Inquirer" and "USA Today."

In 1984, he wrote "Assault With A Deadly Weapon," a book on police brutality. In 1986, he was honored by the California Chicano News Media Association for his defense of the First Amendment, as a result of his triumph in two police brutality trials stemming from a vicious assault by LA County Sheriff's officers in 1979. In 1997, "Assault With a Deadly Weapon" and his book "On the Wrong Side of the Law" were published under one title: "Justice: A Question of Race." The book chronicles his trials and examines the underworld of police brutality and the system that allows it to flourish. He also served as a senior writer with Black Issues in Higher Education from 1990-2000.

Topics

• Overcoming Violence and Trauma

• The Role of the Media in the 21st Century

• The Case For a Multilingual Society

• Black-Brown Relations

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