March 12, 2009
Madeline Janis and Hector Tobar will discuss on the ground realities of immigrant lives in Los Angeles.
Madeline Janis is co-founder and national policy director of the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy (LAANE). Under her stewardship as Executive Director from 1993 to 2012, LAANE became an influential leader in the effort to build a new economy based on good jobs, thriving communities and a healthy environment. LAANE and Ms. Janis have received many honors, including the UCLA Law School’s Antonia Hernandez Public Interest Award and the Los Angeles Roman Catholic Archdiocese’s Empowerment Award, awards from the Liberty Hill Foundation and Office of the Americas, and numerous commendations from the Los Angeles City Council and the California Assembly and Senate.
Hector Tobar is a Los Angeles author and journalist, whose work examines the evolving and interdependent relationship between Latin America and the United States. Tobar is the author of The Tattooed Soldier, a novel set in the impoverished immigrant neighborhoods of Los Angeles in the weeks before the riots, and in Guatemala during the years of military dictatorship there. His non-fiction Translation Nation: Defining a New American Identity in the Spanish-Speaking United States, is a cross-country journey with stops in many of the new places where Latin American immigrants are settling, including Rupert, Idaho, Grand Island, Nebraska and Memphis, Tennessee. His third book, The Barbarian Nurseries, is a sweeping novel about class and ethnic conflict in modern Southern California: it was named a New York Times Notable Book for 2011 and won the 2012 California Book Award gold medal for fiction.