Meet the INvited speakers

Keynote Speaker  Dr. Carlos E. Cortes

In his keynote address, Carlos Cortés will explore the opportunities for and challenges to vaulting the intercultural movement ahead of the curve of history.  Among his topics will be changes in the socio-cultural environment, political correctness controversies, missteps in contemporary diversity training, and inevitable contradictions as different social groups attempt to grapple with and adjust to a rapidly-changing world.  Finally, Carlos will recommend a strategy for interculturalists becoming more active and effective participants in broader public discussions about the future of the United States and the world. 

Dr. Carlos E. Cortés is professor emeritus of history at the University of California, Riverside.  Since the 1990s, he has served on the adjunct faculties of the Harvard Institutes for Higher Education, the Summer Institute for Intercultural Communication, and the Federal Executive Institute.

He has also charmed children and parents alike with his work on Nickelodeon, where he has been the creative/cultural advisor for  Peabody-award-winning children's television series, "Dora the Explorer," and its sequels, "Go, Diego, Go!" and “Dora and Friends: Into the City.” For his Nickelodeon contributions, he has received the 2009 NAACP Image Award.  

As a consultant to many government agencies, school systems, universities, mass media, private businesses, and other organizations, Carlos has wisely engaged groups on five continents on the implications of diversity for education, government, private business, and the mass media.  He currently has a professor’s dream job--lecturing on cruise ships on the topics of comparative culture and intercultural communication.  

His most recent books are his autobiography, Rose Hill: An Intermarriage before Its Time (Berkeley, CA: Heyday, 2012), the four-volume Multicultural America: A Multimedia Encyclopedia (Sage, 2013), and Fourth Quarter: Reflections of a Cranky Old Man (Bad Knee Press, 2016), a finalist in the Latino International Book Awards.  

Fireside Chat with Harry and Pola Triandis

Welcome Harry and Pola Triandis for a personal and professional conversation about their lives together, and the intersection of cross-cultural and intercultural in Harry’s life and work.

Dr. Harry C. Triandis was there at the beginning—a participant in the conference in Estes Park where it was decided that the intercultural field was a discipline that needed its own association: SIETAR. Some of the areas where his thinking and research have been instrumental are variations in Black and White perceptions of the social environment, individualism and collectivism, attitudes and attitude change, analysis of subjective culture, and self-deception in politics, religion, and terrorism. His numerous books and articles provide a foundation for all interculturalists seeking to understand culture and its influence on social behavior, thinking, and feeling. His accomplishments have included major theoretical and methodological innovations as well as educational and leadership contributions. The six-volume Handbook of Cross-Cultural Psychology, published in 1980 under his general editorship, is widely considered an important milestone and is a testament to his stature in the field and to his unique abilities to integrate divergent perspectives from around the world.

Pola Triandis, Harry’s favorite traveling companion, has a story of her own. While she traveled with Harry she had her own career in Continuing Education in International Affairs. For more than 35 years she organized world affairs conferences working with high school students and writing a newsletter. Before marrying Harry she worked at the World Bank. In addition, she taught English in Vietnam and France and did translating from Serbo-Croatian into English. Managing their lives while visiting dozens of countries each year was supremely challenging. Yet she wouldn’t change their lives for anything.

To learn more about this special couple Harry’s autobiography can be reached by going to the web of the International Association of Cross-Cultural Psychology. Start in Google with, scroll to publications, find e-books, click on e-books and scroll to A Cross-Cultural Life. Click on the PDF and the autobiography will show up in a few minutes, because it takes time to get a 294 page book on screen.

Spotlight Event: Ambassador Marcela Celorio, Consul General of Mexico in San Diego

Graduated as a lawyer from the “Escuela Libre de Derecho” in Mexico City, further pursuing two masters, the first in Diplomatic Studies from the Matias Romero Institute (IMR) and the second in Security and Defense from the National Defense College, part of the National Defense Secretariat (SEDENA). Continued her academic training in the Center for U.S –Mexico studies from the University of California in San Diego (UCSD), and distinguishably attended the American University (AU), in Washington D.C. as the first diplomat from the Mexican Foreign Affairs.

In 2000 and 2001, she conducted Public International Law teachings in the Ibero American University (UIA). She has also, directed research and investigations in topics such as dual nationality and citizenship; National Security and Northern American Integration. In addition, she is completely fluent in the English language and has knowledge in French, Italian and Hebrew. 

In the Ministry of Foreign Affairs she has fulfilled the duty of National Director of Naturalization, position from which she helped to promote and encourage the recognition of dual nationality. Efforts that culminated with the constitutional reform of 1997 and the approval of the new nationality law of 1998 in Mexico.

Subsequently, she was named Politics Protection Director, position in which she helped to implement the mechanisms of border cooperation between Mexico and the United States. In 2000 she took charge of the position of Director for the United States of America in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

Outside of Mexico, she was assigned to the Mexican Embassy in the United States as Chief of staff from 2002 to 2006. Thereafter, in September 2006, she was commissioned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in invitation from the Mexican Secretary of State, to serve as Deputy Director General in charge of the region of North America.

From 2009 to 2012, she served as Chief of mission in Israel and as advisor for Economic, Trade and Cooperation Affairs. In 2012 she was assigned as counselor for Political Affairs at the Mexican Embassy in relation to the Kingdom of Belgium and also to the Mexican Mission for the European Union (EU). From 2013 to 2016 she was recognized as the Deputy Consul at the Consulate General of Mexico in New York. 

In, 1999 she incorporated the Mexican Foreign Service as Diplomatic Attaché and ascended each of the categories.

On April 26th, 2017, she was elevated to the rank of Ambassador of Mexico, becoming the first woman Ambassador graduated from the “Escuela Libre de Derecho” in Mexico City.
(Photo of Ambassador Marcela Celorio courtesy of Mike Kirsch)

Plenary Speakers

Leeva C. Chung, Ph.D. - Plenary Speaker for the Cultural Identity Track

Leeva C. Chung, Ph.D., has been a member of the University of San Diego faculty since 1998. She is a professor of Communication Studies, an affiliate faculty member in Ethnic Studies, and faculty onsite coordinator for the Hong Kong intersession. Leeva has developed a unique and innovative style of teaching recognized with numerous awards on campus, such as the Davies Award for Teaching Excellence, Faculty Changemaker Champion, Outstanding Preceptor Award, and the Innovation in Community Engagement Award. On December 16, 2015, Leeva was recognized by the city of San Diego for her contributions to Pure Water San Diego and proclaimed it the Leeva Chung Day.

For 20 years, her research has focused on the intersection of identity development, pop culture and intercultural communication. She has published the popular intercultural textbook Understanding Intercultural Communication with Dr. Stella Ting- Toomey, as well as many other contributed book chapters and research articles. Leeva has delivered keynote speeches and conducted a variety of workshops for corporations, universities, and conferences across the United States. 

Kelli McLoud-Schingen - Plenary Speaker for the Healing the Divides Track 

Kelli McLoud-Schingen, President of KMS Intercultural Consulting, LLC, specializes in Global Diversity and Inclusion, Storytelling, Inclusive Leadership, Social Justice and Healing Racism. She has facilitated development workshops, trainings and storytelling presentations for educational, non-profit, government and corporate institutions in the USA and internationally since 1989.

A certified professional mediator, she holds a Master of Arts in Cross-Cultural Studies from the University of Houston-Clear Lake and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from Aurora University. Additionally, she is Co-Author of the Cultural Detective: African American® and is a contributing author to the Sage Publication, “The Encyclopedia of Intercultural Competence” with a piece entitled, “Prejudice, Bias, and Discrimination.”  Kelli’s work with Healing around cultural issues focuses on healing racism and includes her signature dramatic narrative, "Anything but Black": an examination of internalized racism through the power of storytelling that has been used to kick start the conversation for multicultural audiences all over North America, South America, North Africa and Europe and prompted her TEDx talk, “Identity, the Story of Me”.

She has extensive training and leadership experience in the Intercultural and Diversity fields. Kelli is a Past President for SIETAR USA and the now defunct, SIETAR Houston. She has studied theatre at the Oxford School of Drama, Roosevelt University and Aurora University and has recently started the “World Stage Theatre Company” in Tulsa, OK. The unique blend of drama and diversity Kelli offers has engaged audiences/participants all over the world with the power of story to connect across cultural difference.

Doug Stuart - Plenary Speaker for the Assessing Intercultural Competence Track

Doug Stuart is a Master Certified Developmental Coach & Consultant with the Otto Laske Interdevelopmental Institute. In addition to his PhD from the Illinois Institute of Technology, Doug pursued post-graduate studies at the Illinois School of Professional Psychology in Chicago, in transpersonal psychology at Naropa University, and earned his certification in client-centered therapy from the Chicago Counseling and Psychotherapy Center. 

As a developmental consultant, coach, and trainer in the field of global leadership, he specializes in evidence-based assessment and development. Formerly director of Intercultural Training & Development for a leading provider of relocation services, Doug considers a focus on both vertical and horizontal development essential to the developmental process, and he is licensed to deliver and interpret a variety of intercultural and other assessment instruments. Doug’s most recent paper, “Taking Stage Development Theory Seriously: Implications for Study Abroad” was published in Stylus’ Student Learning Abroad: What Our Students Are Learning, What The’re Not, (and What We Can Do About It). His overview of a dozen such instruments was published in Contemporary Leadership and Intercultural Competence.

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