The Spark Magazine is thrilled to welcome our 2023–2025 editorial board.

The Spark editorial board is composed of scholars who are actively engaged and committed to disseminating diversity research and scholarship to a public audience. The board subscribes to social justice centric editorial values, learning from and collaborating with writers through an open-review process.

Click here to learn more about the editorial board.

Editorial Board

Beatriz Manzor Mitrzyk
Assistant Professor of Pharmacy at the University of Michigan

Following a community engaged approach, Dr. Manzor Mitrzyk’s research encompasses Latinx culture, medication use, and social determinants of health. Her research team strives to create awareness of medication related disparities; identify mechanisms at the individual, community, and health system levels; and develop interventions to reduce them.

Davis Clement
Assistant Professor of Education at Eastern Michigan University

Dr. Clement studies political discourse in education reform, democracy in educational research, and the work lives of school principals. He is also currently the coordinator of the Master’s Program in Educational Leadership and Director of the Eastern Michigan Writing Project. He was a middle school teacher in Little Rock, Arkansas, his hometown.

Ezella McPherson
CEO at Dr. McPherson Coaching, LLC and Manager of College Access at the Detroit Regional Chamber

Dr. McPherson is a researcher and practitioner with an expertise on college student persistence and retention, Black girls and women’s education, and STEM education. She has published two books, Dream On! Supporting and Graduating African American Girls and Women in STEM and Real Outreach: A Practical Guide to Retaining and Graduating College Students.

Marita Inglehart
University Diversity & Social Transformation Professor and Professor of Dentistry & Adjunct Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan

Dr. Inglehart’s research addresses the role of diversity, equity and inclusion in dental education and oral health care settings. Her research focuses on educating future and current dental care providers on cultural literacy and documenting the quality of life of patients with poor oral health from underserved backgrounds.

Michael R. Williams
Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership at Frostburg State University 

Dr. Williams is dedicated to facilitating a safe learning space for students and colleagues through his higher education research by educating others on leadership models, compensation equity, and masculinity identity development. He is highly technologically savvy and has mastered breaking barriers to learning through utilizing online learning platforms in a way that supports a variety of student learning styles, fosters community and engagement amongst students, and allows their voices to be the center of the learning experience.

Steven Paul Alvarez
Associate Professor of English at St. John's University

Dr. Alvarez specializes in literacy studies and bilingual education with a focus on Mexican immigrant communities. His courses range from creative writing, ethnographic methods, Latinx literature, and “taco literacy,” a course exploring the foodways of Mexican immigrants in the United States. Dr. Alvarez is the author of Brokering Tareas: Mexican Immigrant Families Translanguaging Homework Literacies and Community Literacies en Confianza: Learning from Bilingual After-School Programs.

Sydney Richardson
Associate Professor of Leadership Studies at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

Dr. Richardson’s research focuses on non-traditional forms of leadership among underrepresented and marginalized groups, as well as DEIBJ within the workplace and has published a book on women entre-employees post-pandemic. She has also published articles on minority women in leadership, underrepresented adult women learners, and leadership development among minority women leaders in higher education.

 

Taifha Alexander
CRT Forward Project Director at the University of California, Los Angeles

Taifha Natalee Alexander’s research addresses institutional racism and proposes solutions for dismantling it. She has published articles in Georgetown Journal of Law & Modern Critical Race Perspectives and Harvard Journal of Sports & Entertainment Law, among other platforms. Taifha's research has also been cited by TIME, Chronicle for Higher Education, The Chicago Tribune, The Guardian, NBC, and others.

Tami Lincoln
Associate Professor of Liberal Studies at the University of Massachusetts Global

Dr. Tami Lincoln teaches within the Liberal Studies team, which prepares candidates for the UMG teaching credential system, mostly within English/Language Arts. She’s been teaching and designing courses at the university level for 20 years. Dr. Lincoln’s courses integrate diversity, equity and inclusion, which is an incredibly important facet of teacher education.

Victoria Kim
Assistant Professor of Higher Education at the University of Texas, San Antonio

Dr. Kim's work looks at Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) and educational programs, practices, and policies that shape the experiences of racially and ethnically minority students. She specializes in the experiences of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) students.

Manoucheka Celeste
Associate Professor of Gender and Women's Studies at the University of Illinois, Chicago

Dr. Celeste is a Black feminist media scholar whose transnational research focuses on media representations of Black women, immigrants and immigration, and tourism, with emphasis on the Caribbean and Black diaspora. An award-winning mentor, she also writes about women of color mentoring. Her publications include the book Race, Gender, and Citizenship in the African Diaspora: Travelling Blackness and “‘What Now?’: The Wailing Black Woman, Grief, and Difference.”

Rita Shah
Associate Professor of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology at the Eastern Michigan University

Dr. Shah is a Fulbright Scholar and cultural criminologist who combines textual analysis with qualitative and visual methods to understand the ways in which correctional systems are socially and legally constructed. Her most recent book, The Meaning of Rehabilitation and its Impact on Parole: There and Back Again in California (2017), queries the concept of "rehabilitation" to determine how, on a legislative and policy level, the term is defined as a goal of correctional systems. She is also an amateur photographer. You can learn more about her academic and photographic work at her website: ritashahphd.com.

Seanna Leath
Assistant Professor of Psychological & Brain Sciences at Washington University, St. Louis

Dr. Leath studies variation in the family and school-based experiences of Black youth and young adults, with a particular emphasis on how Black women and girls use personal and cultural assets to offset the harm of living within a white supremacist capitalist patriarchal society (RIL sistah hooks). She directs the Fostering Healthy Identities & REsilience (FHIRE) Collaborative, which includes undergraduate and graduate students and community partners in the St. Louis area.

B. Ethan Coston
Associate Professor of Gender, Sexuality, & Women's Studies at the Virginia Commonwealth University

Dr. Coston (they/he) is a sociologist by training and takes up critical concepts and theories from health psychology, public health, and feminist science and technology studies, to weave together narratives about the how and why of human sexuality and gender. As the facilitator of a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Pioneering Ideas community-led grant to support and promote embodiminded autonomy for all, Dr. Coston spends most of their time ruminating on how to make queer, trans, disabled, neurodivergent lives better.