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Sofia B. Pertuz, Ph.D.

Sofia B. Pertuz is the Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer and Senior Advisor for JED Campus. Sofia joined JED in November 2018 with over 20 years of experience in strategic planning, assessment, inclusive excellence, and critical incident management in higher education. She most recently served as Associate Vice President and Dean of Students at Hofstra University and Assistant Dean and Director for Multicultural Affairs at Fordham University. Sofia has been an invited speaker to international audiences on topics in leadership, change management, social justice, and LGBTQ advocacy, including delivering keynotes in Spanish. Sofia is the author of a book chapter, “Exploring Latinx/a/o Identity, Cultural Values, and Success in Higher Education” and her research focuses on Latinx leadership and culturally responsive mental health resources. Sofia dedicates volunteer time sharing knowledge and skills through mentorship and organizational activities aiming to create inclusive and caring communities. Sofia completed a B.A. degree in Organizational Communication from SUNY New Paltz and earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Higher Education Leadership, Management, and Policy, both from Seton Hall University.

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The World Health Organization defines “mental health” “as a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.” In using this definition, S2i recognizes that some mental health challenges reflect brain diseases that, like physical diseases, require appropriate stigma-free and patient-centered care and include both mental health and substance use disorders. Other mental health challenges stem from social conditions and marginalization and require different forms of interventions.