Xochitl Castaneda, PhD
Xóchitl Castañeda is the Associate Director of Health Initiative of the Americas (HIA) at the School of Public Health, University of California (UC) Berkeley. A medical anthropologist by training, Xóchitl was educated in Guatemala and Mexico and completed three post-doctoral fellowships: UC San Francisco, Harvard and Amsterdam University. She directed the Reproductive Health Department at Mexico’s National School of Public Health for seven years. Since 2008, she has served as a professor on Migration and Health at various UC campuses.
Her leadership to improve the health and the quality of life of underserved populations is widely recognized. In 2019, she received the Othli Award, one of the most prestigious distinction presented by the Mexican Government to a person who has positively affected the lives of Mexican nationals in the United States. Xóchitl has over 200 publications and has served as a consultant for more than 40 national and international institutions. She has also served in the Boards of Directors, and other honorable membership positions of 20 organizations.She has presented the results of her academic and advocacy work in over 500 national/international conferences, symposiums, policy briefings, and other events.
Xochitl’s vision and commitment has led to the creation of nationally recognized health programs for underserved populations. Under her direction, HIA has coordinated for 19 consecutive years Binational Health Week, one of the largest mobilization efforts in the Americas to improve the wellbeing of Latino immigrants. She has created of the Annual Binational Policy Forum on Migration and Global Health, a collaboration among 30 Universities and over 200 agencies. Through all these strategies, hundreds of thousands of low-income families have been served.