Senior Faculty Research
Raymond T. Garza is the Founding Director of the Latino Health Research Initiative and Professor of Psychology at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Dr. Garza is known internationally for his theoretical and applied research with Hispanic populations. His research and scholarly publications span more than three decades and include significant contributions in the areas of cross-cultural psychology, minority mental health, intergroup relations, leadership and organizational behavior. Dr. Garza is considered a pioneer for chastising mainstream American psychologists for ignoring the role of culture in the development and testing of psychological theories and their applications. Dr. Garza’s research and professional programs have been supported by major grants from federal agencies and private foundations totaling more than 20 million Dollars. Currently he is the Principal Investigator for three major Federal grants: South Texas Initiative for Mental Health Research and the San Antonio Health Services Research Program, and the USDA FaST Program. The first two grants support research capacity building for San Antonio and the South Texas region as well as six independent research projects addressing critical mental health and health issues impacting the Hispanic community. The USDA grant supports an innovative project designed to test the research capacity building impact of exposing faculty-student research teams to major research projects being carried out at premiere universities or nation research laboratories.
Before coming to UTSA in 1991, Dr. Garza held a faculty appointment with the University of California, Riverside where he co-authored extensively with doctoral students and chaired 14 doctoral dissertation committees. In addition to his work as a researcher and graduate student mentor, Dr. Garza has held several top administrative positions over the past 25 years, including Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at the University of Texas at San Antonio and senior advisor to the Executive Vice Chancellor of the University of Texas System.
Michael R. Baumann received his PhD from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in 2001. His graduate education included training in social and organizational psychology as well as quantitative behavioral research methods. He currently has two main programs of research. The first program focuses on factors influencing a group's ability to recognize and make use of member expertise as well as the impact of different emotions / level of emotion on how groups come to a decision. The second program focuses on how employees' emotional reactions at work influence "counterproductive" work behaviors such as sabotage, "citizenship" behaviors such as going above and beyond the job description, the decision of whether or not to quit a job, and attitudes such as job satisfaction. His work in these areas has been published in a variety of top tier scholarly journals in social and organizational psychology.
In addition to his academic work, Dr. Baumann has combined his knowledge of emotion, attitudes, and decision making with his expertise in quantitative methods to conduct a variety of real-world projects. Before coming to UTSA, Dr. Baumann used a series of experiments, quasi-experiments, and correlational studies to evaluate methods of training US Naval officers for shipboard crises (specifically, coordinating fire / flood control and repair teams during combat conditions). Most recently, Dr. Baumann has led two projects for CPI. The first project used a survey, focus groups, and various statistical techniques to identify beliefs and behaviors related to pet vaccination, neutering, neglect, and abandonment in San Antonio and the surrounding area. The results are being used in support of San Antonio's animal care efforts. The second project used a survey method to assess residents' opinions of various City services. This was the first of what is to be a series of bi-annual surveys that the City will use to help evaluate changes in performance by various services over time.
Robert Ferrer, MD, MPH is Associate Professor and Deputy Chair for Research in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. He is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University and the Hahnemann University School of Medicine. He completed his Family Medicine residency at Duke University and a National Research Service Award Fellowship and MPH at the University of Washington. His research interests include the relationship between social class and health outcomes, as well as the effect of primary care on population health. His work has been published in JAMA, Annals of Internal Medicine, British Medical Journal, and the American Journal of Public Health. In 2002, he was selected as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Generalist Physician Faculty Scholar. Dr. Ferrer practices and teaches at an outpatient clinic in downtown San Antonio that serves disadvantaged inner city residents.
His current collaboration with the Culture and Policy Institute involves examining how physician-patient communication influences the outcomes of diabetes care.
Dr. Norma Guerra received her M.A. in Education with an emphasis on curriculum and instruction at UTSA and Ph.D. in Educational Psychology with a School Psychology Concentration at Texas A&M University. She has worked at UTSA in various capacities for a number of years and is currently assistant professor and Counseling Clinic Director in UTSA’s Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology, and Adult Higher Education. Dr. Guerra was selected as a recipient of the 2006 South Texas Initiative for Mental Health Research (STIMHR) Summer Faculty Research Award. The research awards program helps faculty members develop competitive grant proposals to enrich mental-health research.
Her proposed project, "Assessing Engagement Styles: LIBRE Model Development," focuses on ameliorating counselor-client communication. Her proposed study examines cross cultural sensitivity in dyadic counseling sessions and according implications for access among Hispanics while providing an opportunity to further develop a LIBRE Model, an emerging, cognitively based approach consisting of problem-solving training, practice and dialogue to efficiently resolve client complaints. She is interested in the development and examination of a problem-solving framework which she calls the “LIBRE Model”. This systematic procedure relies on modeling and self-regulation to both address a client’s complaint as well as to provide a framework for future independent problem solving. As a result of her work in a variety of settings including counseling, teaching, and higher education she has determined that the approach can provide useful insight into the nature and level of usual engagement. Defined as various identifiable points along a continuum of attention ranging from initial to sustained, she is interested in exploring the potential contributions and applications of the LIBRE.
Dr. Mendez-Negrete is an assistant professor in the department of Bicultural-Bilingual Studies. She received her PhD in Sociology from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 1995. Her research interests include: Sociohistorical research with emphasis on Chicanas/os; Chicana/Latino leadership and activism in Urban Communities; Ethnic identity, focusing on Chicanas/os; Urban communities; Race, class, and gender studies; and Feminist theory. Her most recent publications include Las hijas de Juan: Daughters Betrayed (2006, Duke University Press) and César Chávez, a contribution to the International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences, 2nd Edition, Farmington Hills, MI: Thomas Gale a subdivision of MacMillan Reference USA.