Engaging in Difficult Conversations: A DEI Conversation with Liza Talusan

More than 100 families joined the virtual conversation with Liza Talusan on January 21, 2021. We are glad so many in our community are engaged in learning and working toward inclusivity and equity. 

Liza Talusan, a nationally recognized facilitator and educator, will lead an engaging, interactive conversation about diversity, anti-racism, bias, privilege and power. As parents and caregivers, we often walk a thin line between wanting to prepare our children for difficult conversations and waiting for them to bring up topics of interest. Yet, more and more, we are faced with issues in our communities that invite us to reassess this line. How do we as parents and caregivers engage, sustain and deepen conversations with our children, our family members and our peers about issues in our communities?

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Liza (LIE-zuh) Talusan (TAH-loo-SUN) is an educator, speaker, leader, writer, life/leadership coach and parent. With over 22 years of experience in PreK-20 education, Liza is an engaging facilitator in conversations about diversity, anti-racism, bias, privilege and power. She creates environments that allow for people to discuss these difficult topics openly. Through her direct work with organizational leaders, staff, students, teachers and communities, Liza empowers individuals to create a more inclusive organization, environment, community and team. 

Liza has been invited to more than 170 organizations across the country to deliver keynote addresses and facilitate dialogue groups and training workshops to develop strategic planning, support change management, and empower faculty and staff. Certified by the Institute for Professional Education in Coaching (iPEC) and credential by the International Coaching Federation, Liza helps clients achieve their personal and professional goals by tapping into your strengths and vision for goal-centered life. 

Liza is the recipient of numerous awards including "Best 40 Under 40"; NASPA Region I Mid-Level Professional Award; NASPA APIKC VIP Award; Asian Women for Health's Peer Leader Award; Promise in Action Mentoring Nominee; Network for Equity, Excellence in Education Award; and a number of institutional grants. 

Dr. Talusan's academic credentials include:

  • Bachelor of Arts, Psychology and Child Development, Connecticut College
  • Master of Arts, Higher Education Administration, New York University
  • Ph.D., Higher Education, University of Massachusetts Boston

Liza's cumulative research interests include the experiences of underrepresented populations; Asian American and Pacific Islander students; socialization to graduate programs; navigating academic parenthood; interracial relationships; recognizing and reducing unconscious bias; and the impact of federal financial aid policies. Liza's dissertation, "The Formation of Scholars: Critical Narratives of Asian American and Pacific Islander Doctoral Students in Higher Education," is available on ProQuest. Liza was the 2017 recipient of the Dissertation of the Year Award by the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Asian American Special Interest Group.

Liza's Top 5 StrengthsQuest Themes are Achiever, Maximizer, Discipline, Activator, and Connectedness. She is someone who is driven, results-oriented, effective and organized, engages others to reach their potential, and practices the principles of community and human connection.