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Previous Awardees

Schomburg Awards



Professor Edna Negron (CA) and the Communication Arts major and the Latino/a and Latin American Studies minor were awarded $750 to host Juan Gonzalez on March 24, 2021, as a special virtual lecturer.   Mr. Gonzalez is a top expert and journalist on Puerto Rico. He lectured on the impact of the Latino vote in the 2020 elections and the prospects for statehood for PuertoRico.


Professors Roark Atkinson, CA, and Pinar Kayaalp, (HGS) were awarded $750 to host Dr. Ahmed Reid, an Associate Professor of History at Bronx Community College and a leading scholar of slavery, emancipation, and gender in the Caribbean region, to Ramapo on April 7, 2021 to give a presentation on racial discrimination and the complexity of systemic racism. Dr. Reid is  a leading expert on Reparations for peoples of African ancestry who have origins in the Atlantic slave trade.


Professor Sandy Shevack (SSHS) was awarded  $900 to host a virtual presentation on April 14, 2021 of leading members of the Black Panther Party.  Francisco Torres, Yasmeen Sutton, and Claudia Williams come together in a virtual panel to discuss the goals of the organization, the “Rainbow Coalition” they created to address social justice issues, their community services programs, and how to create a more equitable society for everyone





The Philosophy Convening Group, consisting of Dr. Lisa Cassidy, Dr. Bernard Roy, and Dr. Marta Vides Saade, in the School of Humanities and Global Studies (HGS) was awarded $1500 to bring Dr. Virginia  Held,  Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, CUNY Graduate Center to Ramapo in October of 2019 for a day of invited and public programs. Her visit  focused on determining what is “good care” within the relationship between care and justice, particularly the challenges posed to care work by intersectionality and the need for responsiveness to particular local, cultural, or religious norms, and gender relations.

John Peffer (CA) was awarded $1179 to bring Antawan Byrd an African-American Associate Curator of  Photography and Media at the Art Institute of Chicago, to Ramapo in November of 2019 to speak about his curatorial projects in both Chicago and West Africa.

Daniel Ciba (CA) was awarded $1,000 to bring Dr. Martine Kei Green Rogers assistant professor at SUNY -New Paltz to Ramapo in November 2019 to present a talk about the importance of diversity for college theater production seasons, and to meet with faculty and students to dicuss race, casting, and season planning.

2020 – Spring and Fall

Although funding was awarded to scholars/presenters for programs in spring of 2020 no programs were actually held because of the COVID 19 pandemic.  Programming resumed in spring of 2021.



Seon Mi Kim (SSHS) – was awarded $4,000. to bring Argentine Scholar and Disability Activist, Mr. Eduardo Joly to Ramapo to lecture at Ramapo in October of 2018.

Marc Gidal (CA) was awarded $2,000 to bring Afro-Cuban musician Melvis Santa and her band Ashedi to Ramapo to present two demonstration-performances to students in October of 2018.

Christopher Reali (CA) was awarded $800 to bring African-American hip hop artist, Cesar Comanche to Ramapo for a lecture in April of 2018.

Shalom Gorewitz (CA) was awarded $3,000 to bring 3 African artists from KNUST to Ramapo in the fall of 2018 for workshops and lectures. He was also awarded $2500 to bring renowned author Madison Smartt Bell to Ramapo in the spring of 2019 to present a lecture based on his epic trilogy about the Haitian revolution and his biography of Toussaint Louverture.

Ashwani Vasishth (SSHS) was awarded $4500 to bring Stan Thekaekara, a practitioner of community sustainability in India, to Ramapo in April 2019 to do a college-wide presentation to Ramapo and to conduct class presentations throughout the week.




Stephanie Sarabia (SSHS)- was awarded $3,000 To bring Drs’ Esmeranda Manful and Kwadwo Ofori-Dua to Ramapo from Ghana to lecture on their research and teaching in the field of social work in Spring of 2017.  She and co-sponsor, Mia Serban (SSHS), was also awarded $2,500 to bring Marta Ceia, a professor of Politics and Public Policy in Lisbon, Portugal to Ramapo.  Ms. Ceia visited Ramapo in fall of 2017 and conducted a presentation for Ramapo on the social justice approach of Portugal’s drug policy.

Vassiliki Flenga (SSGHS) was awarded $10,000 to bring Haitian born film director Raoul Peck to Ramapo to give a talk about his Oscar nominated film, “I am Not Your Negro.”

Marc Gidal (CA) was awarded $2700 to bring musicians from India and China to Ramapo for a series of musical workshops.

Peter Campbell (CA) was awarded $2500. to bring artist/writer Sylvia Bofill to Ramapo for a talk about the new play Medea and its relationship to Puerto Rico,

Ruma Sen (CA) was awarded $1,000 to bring Social Change Activist Dr. Saumya Pant to Ramapo to give an open lecture  and workshops to Ramapo students.


James Hoch, SSHGS, was awarded $5,000 to bring writers of color to Ramapo for the spring 2016 semester.  He brought Award-winning author and noted physician Uzodinma Iweala to Ramapo College on Monday, February 29 as part of the Readings at Ramapo Visiting Writers Series.  The event was held in the Trustees Pavilion  and was free and open to the public.

Sanghamitra Padhy, SSHS, received $4,000 to bring Priyanca Mathur Velath, a distinguished scholar from India to visit Ramapo and give a public talk on Refugee Rights.

David Colman, SSHS, received $4,500 to bring distinguished historian, Khalil Gibran Muhammad, to Ramapo for a campus-wide lecture.  Muhammad, great grandson of Nation of Islam founder, Elijah Muhammad, is currently the Director of the Schomburg Center  in Black Research.

Pat Keeton, CA, Pinar Kayaalp, SSHGS, and Erin Augis, SSHS jointly received $1500 to bring Pakistan Professor Shafiuddin Khan to Ramapo for two public lectures and class visits. Professor Khan’s academic area of teaching, writing and publication is in literature, with special expertise in traditional Urdu poetry. Prof. Khan has a background of service and training with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR),

Sandra Suarez, TAS and Pinar Kayaalp, SSHGS, received $3,000 to bring Marc Lamont Hill to Ramapo to deliver a Diversity Convocation speech in February.

Marc Gidal, CA,  received $2500 to bring musicians, Pedrito Martinez from Cuba, Clarice Assad from Brazil and Keita Ogawa from Japan to perform at Ramapo.

Maria Vail, CA, received $750. To bring actor Victor Williams to campus  to offer on camera workshops to acting and film students.

Shalom Gorewitz, CA, received $4,000 to fund residency for Sam Kirk, a multidisciplinary artist with studios in Chicago and Brooklyn.  Ms. Kirk showcased her work and gave a lecture/slideshow that was open to the public.

Tamika Quick, Assistant Director for Equity and Diversity Programs, received $2,000 to bring Imam Daayiee Abdullah, a religious leader who actively practices inclusiveness in his religious practices to Ramapo to give a lecture to the community.

Terra Vandergaw, CA, received $400.00 to bring Claudia Givings, Ramapo alumna, actor, choreographer, dancer, educator to campus to work with students on a theatre production.



Ashwani Vasishth, SSHS – Awarded $3,000 to bring Juli and Vivek Cariappa, two long-time practitioners of sustainable farming in India to Ramapo to give a presentation about their research and practice in sustainable farming.

Ruma Sen, CA – Awarded $1200 to bring South Asian scholar Dr. Anjali Ram to Ramapo to deliver a lecture on Bollywood, the Diaspora and Indian cinema.

Sri Shivarajan, ASB – Awarded $1,750 to bring New York City mobile and technical entrepreneur Nihal Mehta to Ramapo for a one day lecture and seminar.

Aaron Lorenz, SSHS – Awarded $2,000 to bring actor/author/and reggae archivist Roger Steffens to Ramapo for a one day performance/lecture on reggae legend Bob Marley.

Michael Riff, SSHGS – Awarded $600 to bring Rasheeda Sampson-Jefferson to Ramapo to deliver a presentation on her father, Otto Sampson Senior. Mr. Sampson was one of the liberators of Buchenwald Concentration Camp during World War II.

Edna Negron, CA – Awarded $975 to bring Dr. Theresa Williamson, founder of Catalytic Communities to Ramapo to give public lectures and discussion. Catalytic Communities is a nonprofit organization based in Rio de Janeiro dedicated to ensuring vision and voice on behalf of the city’s infamous favela communities.

Lewis Colman, SSHS – Awarded $4,000 to bring distinguished author, Clifford Thompson, to Ramapo to teach a course in Africana Studies.

Paul Reck, SSHS – Awarded $5500 to bring British social and political writer, commentator and activist Lola Adesioye to Ramapo to give a presentation at African Ancestry month.

Terra Vandergaw, CA – Awarded $4500 to bring French mask artisan Alaric Chagnard to Ramapo to oversee intensive workshops with students.

Mihaela Serban, SSHS – Awarded $6,000 to bring African-American acclaimed author and activist Kevin Powell to Ramapo to give a talk and class presentation.

Marc Gidal, CA – Awarded $1200 to host a demonstration/performance of Chinese Instrumental music, entitled: “Silk and Bamboo,”


 2013 – 2014

Sanghamitra Padhy, SSHS – Awarded $3,000 to bring Chandan Gowda, an Indian scholar and specialist in marginalized lower caste communites to Ramapo for five days.   The visit includes a lecture, workshop and class visitation.

Adam Lorenz ,SSHSTerra Vandergaw, CA – Awarded $3500 for a 2 day program conducted by Mark Stewart in conjunction with his 2014 NY’s public Theatre premiere.  Mr. Stewart will conduct a public performance, student workshop and class visitation.

John Peffer, CA, – Awarded  $2,000 to sponsor South African artist, Senzeni  Marasela.  Ms. Marasela  will conduct workshops  on performance and lectures on new media and art activism.

Maria Vail, CA, – Awarded $2500 to have Sheila Tousey, a Native American actor, conduct a 3 week residency working with theater and digital filmmaking students.   Ms. Tousey has worked with a number of well-known actors.  She will present 3 talks and visit 9 classes over her 3 week residency.

Susan Hangen, SSHGS – Awarded $1800 to bring Ashmina Ranjit, a leading Nepalese  art activist to Ramapo for a four day residency.  She will conduct a public lecture, student workshops and visit relevant classes.

Neel Scott, Marta Bautis, CA – Awarded $2200 to sponsor Octavio Brunetti, a Latin Grammy winning tango pianist.  He will conduct a public lecture with Marta Bautis, and give an evening performance of  his Quintet and a student workshop.

Marc Gidal, Brandon Deitch, CA – Awarded $8500 to bring Grammy winning jazz pianist Arturo O’Farrill, and the Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra to conduct a 2 day residency to include student rehearsals, class visits and a public performance.

Michael Edelstein, SSHS – Awarded $500 to bring Elizabeth Hoover, a Mohawk tribe member and a Ph.D. professor of American and Ethnic Studies, to speak at Ramapo.

Sydney Jenkins, CA – Awarded $1,000 to bring Dr. Erica James from Yale University to give a lecture on Haitian art history.

Sanghamitra Padhy, SSHS – Awarded $2500 to bring Selina Tobaccowala, a distinguished IT specialist and entrepreneur to campus to give a public talk. Ms. Tobaccowala is cofounder of Evite and Senior VP of Product and Engineering at Survey Monkey.

John Peffer, CA,  and David Lewis Colman, SSHS – Awarded  $1500 to bring distinguished South African photographer Paul Weinberg to campus for a free public talk.

Rebecca Root, Michael Riff, SSHGS and Pat Keeton, CA – Awarded $1,000 to bring Paco de Onis, producer, and Pamela Yates, director, of the movie –  Dictator in the Dock: Genocide on Trial in Guatemala to Ramapo to show excerpts from their film to be followed by a classroom visit.

Hugh Sheehy, SSHGS – Awarded  $1,000 to bring Anthony Grooms, noted novelist and social critic, to Ramapo to teach a master class on the uses of  historical materials.

Neel Scott and Shalom Gorewitz, CA – Awarded $2500 to bring filmmaker Patricia Benoit to Ramapo for a screening of her film Stones in the Sun to be followed by workshops.

James Hoch, SSHGS-Awarded $3,000 to bring African-American writers ZZ Packer and Yusef Komunyakaa  to present readings to Ramapo students, staff and faculty.



John Peffer, CA – Awarded $600 to bring Dr. Nichol Bridges, African American art curator for the Newark Museum, to campus to speak to students about the carved ivory tusks that were made in the Congo for export to Europe during the later 19th Century.

Ashwani Vasishth, SSHS – Awarded $10,000 to bring the key architects and mobilizers of the Peoples’ Sustainability Treaties to Ramapo College for a weeklong series of workshop panels.  The group shared the results and outcomes of the Rio+20 process, from a grass-roots perspective, and the projected future of the global citizens movement.

Marc Gidal, CA – Awarded $3750 to bring a Brazilian Percussion Ensemble to Ramapo led by musician Amarildo Santos Costa, a native of Salvador, Ahai, Brazil.  Costa provided individual workshops and performances on Afro-Brazilian musical arts to students, faculty and staff.

Tilahun Sineshaw, SSHS  – Awarded $6,000 to bring Dr. Getachew Sahlemariam, a noted Africanist scholar and educator, to Ramapo College as a scholar in residence.  Dr. Sahlemariam lectured on his experiences  and the challenges of institution building in an African setting.



Peter Campbell, CA – Awarded $5,000 to bring Latina playwright/translator/scholar/activist Caridad Svich to campus.  She will participate in lectures, seminars, discussions and workshops on her work, the work of Spanish playwright Federico Garcia Lorca, and issues of Latino/a displacement.

Yolanda del Amo, CA – Awarded $1200 to bring African-American artist/photographer Deana Lawson to campus.  She will provide a one day program to give a talk that will open to the college community and critique students’ work in class ARTS 328 – Portrait Photography.

Neriko Doerr, AIS – Awarded $2515 to bring noted New Zealand educator and researcher, Prof. Pania Te Maro to lecturer to Ramapo students about creating change toward minority empowerment.

Marc Gidal, CA – Awarded $7,000 to bring Amarildo Santos Costa and Jailton “Dende” Macedo  to Ramapo and fund performances, workshops and an ongoing student ensemble focused on Afro-Brazilian Music, Dance and Culture for the 2011-12 academic year.

Patricia Keeton/Sarah Stackhouse, CA – Awarded$3,750 to bring Fahima Vorgetts, director of the Afghan Women’s Fund and Muhammad S. Kahn, Professor of Literature, Gov Post Graduate College, Bagh, Pakistan to campus for lectures, film screenings, and classroom presentations.

John Peffer, CA – Awarded $4,000 to support an exhibition of work by African-American performance, music, and digital artist duo Keith and Mendi Obakike, titled: “African Metropole—Lagos.”

Ruma Sen/Christina Smith, CA – Awarded $4500 to bring Dr. Arvind Singhal, from Clinton School of Public Service, “Arkansas and documentary  filmmakers Vaishali Sinha and Rebecca Haimowitz for a series of public presentations, classroom programs involving Ramapo professors from various disciplines.

Sandra Suarez, TAS/Karl Johnson, SSHS – Awarded $1650. To bring Dr. Monique Scott from Columbia University and Dr. Alondra Nelson  from the American Museum of Natural History to speak at Ramapo College as a featured event for African American Heritage Month in February 2012.