Meet The Staff

Ida Balderrama-Trudell

Interim Assistant Dean & Director

ida.balderramatrudell@wisc.edu

Ida currently serves as the interim Assistant Dean/Director for the Multicultural Student Center. She has almost 20 years of higher education experience, ranging from her own graduate education, to student services, academic administration, advising, teaching and health and wellness.  She practices a socio-ecological approach to her work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is a fierce social justice practitioner and advocate. She holds a master’s degree in Human Development & Family Studies from UW-Madison and bachelor’s degrees from Texas Tech University, in both Psychology and Human Development & Family Studies. Her master’s thesis focused on the ambiguous discrimination experiences for Mexican American college-age students. She enjoys making meaningful connections with students and being a small part of their life journey. She’s also a Girl Scout leader for both of her daughter’s Girl Scout Troops, loves cooking, and reading and most importantly spending time with loved ones and dear colleagues. She is committed to life-long learning, self-care and advocacy and is a proud Chicana, born in California, raised in Texas and living in Wisconsin.

Maria Ahmad

Assistant Director, Leadership and Involvement

maria.ahmad@wisc.edu

Maria Ahmad serves as the Assistant Director for Leadership and Involvement at Multicultural Student Center. In this role, Maria oversees the MSC intern program, development of over 25 multicultural student organizations, general facilities management of the MSC space, and leadership and professional development opportunities for student leaders. Maria brings experience from her previous position as the Coordinator of Student Life and Campus Diversity at Indiana University Kokomo, and her education. She earned her undergraduate degree from the Ohio State University, and her Masters in Student Affairs at Northern Illinois University where she served as the Graduate Advisor for student organization support and leadership.

Maria is involved in NASPA Knowledge Communities, and chairs the regional IV-E KC on Religion, Faith, and Spirituality. She also works with the National Muslim Students Association Board as the Higher Education liaison. She is passionate about helping students get involved on campus and build community while also developing into strong leaders and friends who work to make the world a better place for all.

Karla Foster

Assistant Director of Cultural Programming

karla.foster@wisc.edu

Karla Foster (she/her/hers) serves as the Assistant Director of Cultural Programming for the Multicultural Student Center.  In this role, Karla oversees all of the culturally relevant programmatic efforts of the MSC, all Cultural Heritage Month Planning Committees, and the Black Cultural Center. Karla brings experience form her previous positions as the inaugural Black Cultural Center Program Coordinator, the Campus & Community Liaison for African American students within the Pathways to Educational Achievement office in the Division of Diversity, Equity & Educational Achievement, and her education. She earned her undergraduate degree from Indiana University- Bloomington with a minor in African American And African Diaspora Studies, and her Masters of Science in Student Affairs and Higher Education at Indiana State University where she served as a Graduate Retention Counselor in the Charles E. Brown African American Cultural Center and an Academic Advisor in the School of Education.  Chat with Karla if you are interested in: Cultural heritage month programming, Black history and culture, student organization development, Black Greek life.

Caitlyn LoMonte

Assistant Director for Social Justice Programs

caitlyn.lomonte@wisc.edu

Caitlyn LoMonte (she/her/hers) serves as the Assistant Director for Social Justice Programs for the Multicultural Student Center. Caitlyn earned her Bachelor of Arts in Women’s Studies and Bachelor of Science in Advertising from the University of Florida where she was a Machen Florida Opportunity Scholar. She served as an AmeriCorps VISTA at the University of Florida providing resources, support, and outreach to first generation college students and high risk high school students in the Gainesville, FL community before moving to Chicago, IL to pursue a Master of Arts in Women’s and Gender Studies from DePaul University. Caitlyn is passionate about social change, education and empowerment. She is thrilled to begin a new adventure at UW-Madison and is looking forward to getting to know students and build a more inclusive campus together.

Lauren L. Adams

Black Cultural Center, Program Coordinator

lauren.adams@wisc.edu

Lauren Adams (she/her/hers) serves as the Program Coordinator for the Black Cultural Center (BCC). In this role, Lauren oversees outreach, programming, assessment, and the daily operations of the BCC. As a Chicago native, Lauren attended Loyola University Chicago where she earned her Bachelor’s of Arts in Women’s Studies Gender Studies and minored in Education Policy Studies. Lauren is also a graduate of Michigan State University’s Student Affairs Administration program where she earned a Master’s degree, as well as a certificate in Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Education.

 

Lauren brings with her experiences in teaching, residence life, and working with retention-based programming for first-generation, working class, and Students of Color. Considering herself a scholar practitioner, Lauren serves on the NASPA Journal of Women and Gender in Higher Education. Additionally, she has presented at national conferences and published work on the experiences of Black women and gender queer undergraduates of Predominantly White Institutions (PWIs). Lauren is committed to creating a space in the BCC where Black students can show up as their full authentic selves and be supported in aspects of their development.

Arturo 'Tito' Diaz

Organizational Development Specialist

arturo.diaz@wisc.edu

Arturo ‘Tito’ Diaz serves as the Program Coordinator for the Multicultural Student Center. Previously he served as an AmeriCorps member with College Possible Milwaukee as a Senior Coach. Tito graduated from the University of Wisconsin Madison with a degree in Community and Nonprofit Leadership with a certificate in Chican@/Latin@ Studies. During his time on campus he was involved with his Scholarship Program, P.E.O.P.L.E, ran for numerous positions in the Associated Students of Madison, joined his Fraternity Lambda Theta Phi Latin Fraternity Inc., and was the President of the Multicultural Greek Council. Tito also interned with the MSC as the Outreach and Partnership Intern, a collaboration with CommNS in the School of Human Ecology. In his final year he was able to win the Multicultural Student Center’s Campus Legacy Award. He is thrilled to be returning to Madison and work toward creating an authentic Wisconsin Experience for the students he will be serving.

Tiffany Lee

Crossroads Coordinator

tslee2@wisc.edu

Tiffany Lee is a Black queer femme from York City. She has Master’s degrees in Gender and Women’s Studies and Afro-American Studies from UW Madison. Her scholarship and activism are centered on queer folk of color. She enjoys (good) spoken word, clever Internet memes, and challenging oppressive structures – small and large. She is extremely excited to bring her passion and experience to help create and sustain an empowering environment for queer people and our allies on this campus.

Sam Becker

Social Justice Education Specialist

samantha.becker@wisc.edu

Sam Becker (she/her/hers) serves as the Social Justice Education Specialist for the Multicultural Student Center. She grew up in the Chicagoland area and identifies as begrudgingly but solidly Midwestern. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in English and Philosophy from Roosevelt University in Chicago before earning a Master’s degree in Library and Information Sciences. Her experiences in librarianship influence her emphasis on information access and education as critical to one’s autonomy and personal empowerment. She is excited to work with UW Madison students and contribute to the work of building an inclusive community together.

Tev Lee

Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Student Center Program Coordinator

tev.lee@wisc.edu

Tevelung (Tev) Lee earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication: Public Relations and a Minor in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay. He further perused and earned a Master of Science in Education: Student Affairs and Administration in Higher Education where he served as a graduate assistant with the Campus Activities Board and mentor to various multicultural student organizations. As a product of TRIO – Upward Bound – and having had the opportunity to serve in several TRIO programs, he brings experience and knowledge in programming, advising first-generation and financially disadvantaged students. Tev is an artist at heart with interests in crafts, drawing, painting, calligraphy, photography, and ceramics. He enjoys discovering new places to unwind and dine. Tev strives to guide and assist students in navigating their college experience and campus culture.

Cristian Noriega

Latinx Cultural Center Program Coordinator

Cristian Noriega (He/Him/His) serves as the Program Coordinator for the Latinx Cultural Center. Cristian is a recent graduate from the Higher Education Master’s program at Loyola University-Chicago. During his time there he was part of the executive board for his academic program, an editor for the Journal of Critical Scholarship in Higher Education and Student Affairs, and began conducting research on Undocumented Queer Students of Color. His work focuses on the dismantling of barriers between our higher education institutions and minoritized individuals. Cristian brings experiences pertaining to mentorship for students of color, Queer initiatives and trainings, as well as knowledge of family relations within Latinx communities. Cristian is excited to provide his skills in building the Latinx Cultural Center into an effective space for Latinx Students and their multi-faceted identities.