Fanny Julissa García is a Honduran-American writer, editor, oral historian and social justice advocate. Two years after graduating high school, she enrolled and dropped out of community college but “got woke” at the Law Offices of George Terterian where she provided legal assistance on class action law suits involving tenant rights, habitability litigation and poverty law. The experience fueled her passion for social justice, immigration reform, women’s rights, education reform and LGBT rights. After the law firm, she worked for many years at a rape crisis center which was followed by a 15-year career in HIV/AIDS social work, research and advocacy.
During this time, she also co-founded and managed a theater company in Los Angeles, which produced plays in low-income and culturally rich areas of Los Angeles. She served as the company’s managing director, literary manager and also worked as an actor and playwright. In 2010, she launched an arts journal called pLAywriting in the city where together with a volunteer staff of journalists, writers and editors, she covered art and theater produced by people of color in Los Angeles and Orange County.
After the 2008 economic downturn, she was laid off from her role as Program Manager of an HIV/AIDS clinic and decided to return to her first love, education. She promptly returned to community college to resume her higher education goals. In 2015, she graduated Magna Cum Laude with Departmental Honors from UCLA and will start a masters program in oral history at Columbia University in September 2016. Most recently, her short story, “Brown Puerquitos: A Failed Love Affair” was published by the Westwind Literary Arts Journal.
As an oral history graduate student at Columbia University, Fanny’s research will focus on the mass media coverage of the Central American Unaccompanied Minors Crisis in which she will review detention center documents, asylum testimonies and conduct oral history interviews. In her analysis of these different texts, she aims to convey an interdisciplinary look at the migration patterns and unique experiences of Central Americans, and shed light on the traumatizing impact of the asylum process, detention procedures and violation of habeas corpus in the U.S immigration system.