Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies October 2020 Newsletter

News Briefs

Lorrie Frasure

Professor Lorrie Frasure to Serve as Acting Director of the Bunche Center for AY 2020-2021

Lorrie Frasure, Associate Professor in the Departments of Political Science and African American Studies, will be serving as the Acting Director of the Bunche Center for African American Studies. Professor Frasure is the Vice Chair of the Department of Political Science, Graduate Studies. To read more about Dr. Frasure's appointment, click here.

Karida Brown

Professor Karida Brown Named Lakers Director of Racial Equity & Action

Karida Brown, Assistant Professor in the Departments of Sociology and African American Studies, joined the Los Angeles Lakers Basketball organization as the Director Racial Equity. Dr. Brown also serves on the boards of The Obama Presidency Oral History and the Du Bois Scholar Network. To read more about Dr. Brown's new appointment, click here.

Tracy Johnson

Professor Tracy Johnson Named Dean of Life Sciences

Tracy Johnson was named Dean of the Division of Life Sciences. Professor Johnson teaches molecular, cell, and developmental biology and is the holder of the Keith and Cecilia Terasaki Presidential Endowed Chair. Dr. Johnson is an award-winning scientist whose research focuses on understanding the mechanisms of gene regulation, particularly RNA splicing, chromatin modification and the intersection between these reactions. To read more about Dr. Johnson's research, click here.

Vickie Mays

Professor Vickie Mays Named Special Advisor to the Chancellor on Black Life

Professor Vickie Mays was appointed as Special Advisor to the Chancellor on Black Life. Professor Mays is a Distinguished Professor in both Departments of Psychology and Health Policy and Management. She is a member of the National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics subcommittees on Population Health and Privacy, Security and Confidentiality and a member of the Standards Review Committee for the Affordable Care Act. To read more about Dr. Mays research, click here.

Kimberlé Crenshaw

Professor Kimberlé Crenshaw Guest-Editing Special 'Say Her Name' Issue Of 'Chime For Change' Zine

The African American Policy Forum is partnering with Gucci’s Chime For Change initiative on a special digital edition of Chime Zine. Co-Founder and Executive Director Kimberlé Crenshaw is guest-editing the one-of-a-kind issue that approaches that mission through an intersectional lens. To read more about this story, click here.

Marilyn Raphael

Professor Marilyn Raphael Named Interim Director of UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability

Marilyn Raphael, Professor in the Department of Geography, was named the new interim director of UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability. To read more about Professor Raphael's new role, click here.

Postdoctoral Fellowships Announcement

UCLA Bunche Center for African American Studies will select five Chancellor’s Postdoc Fellows, appointed across campus, whose research focuses on Black life and the Black experience. These Postdoctoral Fellowships are apart of Chancellor Block and EVC/P Carter's "Rising to the Challenge" Initiatives. Applicants must apply to the UC President's Postdoctoral Program (UC PPFP). Candidates considered for funding from both programs. For more information and to apply, please click here.

Bunche Fellows Program Commences with the 2020-2021 Cohort

The Bunche Fellows Program was launched in spring 2019 in collaboration with the Department of African American Studies. The 2020 Bunche Fellows Program cohort consists of seven undergraduate students from disciplines across campus. BFP Undergraduate Fellows include Jade Frank (African American Studies and Sociology), Rhamia Hall (African American Studies and Sociology), DeAnna Pittman (Political Science and African American Studies), Pearl Omo-Sowho (Human Biology and Society), Khalil Jacobs-Flier (African American Studies and English), Shane DeGrace (Psychobiology), and Sophie Seeholzer (English).

BFP Undergraduate Fellows at Black Convocation.

Funding opportunities

IAC Grants and Predoctoral Fellowship Applications Now Open

The UCLA Institute of American Cultures (IAC) invites applications for grants and a predoctoral fellowship in support of research that is committed to the study of Black Life--in disciplines across campus. Both the IAC grants and Predoctoral Fellowship are administered by the Bunche Center. For more information, contact Assistant Director, Tabia Shawel (tshawel@bunche.ucla.edu) or visit the IAC website.

2020 is a critical election year. Many important issues are on the ballot. Here are some voter guides to consider:


Social Justice Learning Institute

Black Lives Matter- Los Angeles

Important Dates

Absentee Ballot Deadlines

Request: Oct. 27

Return by mail: Postmarked by Nov. 3 and received no later than Nov. 20

Return in person: Nov. 3 by 8:00 p.m.

Early Voting

Oct. 5 - Nov. 2, dates and hours vary based on where you live

If voting in person, please remember to wear a mask!


Profiles UCLA faculty, students, staff, and alumni who contribute to advancing the field of African American Studies

Korbin Felder

Korbin Felder is a dual JD/MA student in African-American studies and the UCLA School of Law. He completed his MA requirements in AY 19-20 and has entered his first year of Law School. Korbin works for Million Dollar Hoods and leads the Public Records Act (PRA) division for Million Dollar Hoods. This past summer, Korbin worked with A New Way of Life Reentry Program in Watts.

Korbin is originally from South Orange, New Jersey. He graduated in 2014 with a BA in Afro-American/African studies and History from the University of Michigan. Prior to coming to UCLA, Korbin worked as an advocate for those in the criminal legal system in both Alabama and Michigan. He also worked for several years as a Justice Fellow at the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI). At EJI, Korbin served as a paralegal on conditions of confinement litigation challenging unconstitutional conditions in Alabama prisons, and also worked directly with clients re-entering society after years of incarceration. While in Michigan, Korbin served as an associate member on the State Bar of Michigan’s Prisons and Corrections Section. He also served as a Program Associate at the AFSC Michigan Criminal Justice Program, a grassroots advocacy organization that advocates on behalf of people incarcerated in Michigan state prisons.

He came to UCLA for the dual law and African-American studies program because he wants to complicate traditional conditions litigation by bringing an explicit racial justice lens to conditions litigation. He is particularly interested in state prisons across the American South that are situated on sites of slavery. Upon graduation, Korbin wants to do prison conditions litigation in the Deep South.

BFP Faculty Mentor Professor Karida Brown and Undergraduate Fellow Omar Abulkarim at the 2019 IAC Fall Forum.