Dena Samuels, PhD

Dena Samuels is a Sociologist specializing in race, gender, sexuality and social justice curriculum development and training.

She teaches in Women’s and Ethnic Studies at University of Colorado – Colorado Springs (UCCS), and received the university’s Outstanding Instructor Award.  She is also the recipient of the Student Multicultural Affairs’ honorary award for Outstanding Achievement in Diversity.

Among her many publications in the pedagogy of social justice, Samuels is author of The Culturally Inclusive Educator: Preparing for a Multicultural World (Columbia University’s Teachers College Press, 2014), already in its second printing. She is also co-editor of the anthology, The Matrix Reader:Examining the Dynamics of Oppression and Privilege (McGraw-Hill, 2009), and author of Teaching Race, Gender, Class, and Sexuality (McGraw-Hill, 2009), a teaching guide that accompanies this volume.

At UCCS, Samuels serves as the Director of the Matrix Center for the Advancement of Social Equity and Inclusion, and directs and co-leads the annual national Knapsack Institute: Transforming Teaching and Learning, which provides training to educators from around the country on teaching issues of inclusiveness. In addition, she has created curriculum for, directed, and continues to co-facilitate the Building Inclusiveness program which provides diversity workshops for administration, faculty, staff, and students.

Samuels is Chair and founding member of The Privilege Institute in Denver which houses the annual national award-winning White Privilege Conference: a social justice conference that focuses on challenging social inequalities. 

Samuels brings her passion for teaching inclusiveness strategies to universities, non-profits, corporations, and K12 schools around the country and beyond to help them build inclusiveness in their organizations. 

by Cassandra Olsen with Dena Samuels on Sexy To Your Soul
Interview by Ryan Warner with Dena Samuels on Colorado Public Radio
~ article & audio ~

(Please be patient while audio loads on CPR website)

Some of Her Clients Include:

 Align Consulting (a Harvard University consulting firm)
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Colorado
Caring for First Nations Society in British Columbia
Center for Legal Inclusiveness
Chinese Heritage Camps
Colorado College
Colorado State University – Fort Collins
El Paso County Department of Health and Human Services
Gay and Lesbian Fund for Colorado 
History Colorado Center
ISACS (Independent Schools Association of the Central States)
Millersville University in Pennsylvania
Northwest 5 Consortium (Lewis & Clark, Puget Sound, Reed, Whitman, Willamette)
ONE Colorado
Pomona College
Regis University
San Diego Mesa College
Scholars to Leaders Academy
Stanley British Primary School
Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania
The Citadel Military Institute of South Carolina
USA Swimming
U.S. Air Force Academy
U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School
U.S. Naval Academy
University of Denver
University of Northern Iowa
Washington College, Chestertown, MD
West Texas A & M
Whitworth University, Spokane, WA

Samuels has been interviewed by TV and radio stations on issues of race, gender, and sexuality. She has also been interviewed by Southern Poverty Law Center’s Teaching Tolerance. 

She holds a PhD in Educational Leadership, Research, and Policy from UCCS, an M.A. in Sociology from UCCS, and a B.A. in Politics from Brandeis University. She has also served as a culturally inclusive, trauma-sensitive yoga instructor both in a locally owned donation-based studio and at an addiction rehab center.

She has been consulting on social justice issues since 2002.