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Adina Nack, Ph.D.
Director of the Center for Equality and Justice
An associate professor of sociology, Dr. Adina Nack was the Founding Director of CLU’s Center for Equality & Justice; she has also served as the Director of CLU's Gender & Women's Studies Program and Chair of the Sociology Department. Nack received her Ph.D. from the University of Colorado, Boulder and joined CLU in 2003, after having been faculty at the University of Maine.
She is a medical sociologist whose research has focused on sexual health, social psychology, social inequality, gender, and sexuality. An award-winning teacher, she has also won national research awards, published articles on the stigma of sexually transmitted diseases, and authored a book on women living with genital herpes and HPV infections published by Temple University Press in 2008. Her current research collaboration examines traumatic childbirth narratives of women, their significant others, and health care providers.
A proponent of community-based action research, Nack was a Co-Principal Investigator for Ventura County’s two recent studies of Latinos/as receiving HIV/AIDS services (funded by the California State Office of AIDS). The first study inspired the 2006 countywide HIV & Latinos: A Leadership Summit which led to the creation of the Latino HIV Taskforce. In addition to her work with VCPH, she has also served as a research consultant for the ELCA Sexuality Studies Taskforce, Western Institute of Hearing, United Women's Leadership Council, and AIDS Desk (Chennai, India).
A member of the HIV/AIDS Coalition of Ventura County since 2003, Nack chairs the county's World AIDS Day Committee.
Samuel Thomas, Ph.D.
Associate Director of the Center for Equality and Justice
Dr. Thomas is Assistant Professor of Religion and teaches courses on the the history of biblical interpretation, Judaism and Christianity, and Environmental Ethics. He is also a co-chair of the CLU Sustainability Council and has been active in Ventura County social and environmental justice organizations. Dr. Thomas is on the Board of Directors of the Abundant Table Farm Project, and is a faculty advisor for the Student Alliance for a Greener Environment (SAGE), the Backpacking Club, and the CLU SEEd Project.