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Comings and Goings Update: Get to know Assistant Professor Diana Leonard

October 01, 2012

  • Diana Leonard, assistant professor of psychology
Several people have joined the community recently, and some continuing employees have taken on new roles and responsibilities at Lewis & Clark:

Jamie Adams, maintenance engineer, Facilities Services; Margot Black, director, Math Skills Center; Shannon Ehlers, accountants payable clerk, CAS Bookstore; Angélica Garcia, assistant dean of academic support and student success, CAS Dean of the College; Caitlyn Hansen, degree audit and transfer credit coordinator, CAS Registrar; John Holzwarth, director, Writing Center; Christopher Keady, shipping and receiving coordinator, CAS Bookstore; Zachariah Selley, special collections associate, Watzek Library; Lawrence Siulagi, communications specialist, Public Affairs and Communications; Erin Snyder, associate director of career services, Law Career Services; Aaron Willis, web developer, CAS bookstore; and Zachary Tobias, laboratory technician, biology.

The following people have left Lewis & Clark. Here’s wishing them good luck in their new adventures:

Kristin Dissinger, legal assistant I, law school; Ellen Kim, administrative coordinator, Law Career Services; Cassandra Mercer, program and board development coordinator, NCVLI; Paul Merchant, William Stafford Collection Archivist, Watzek Library; Tracy Nguyen-Chung, program coordinator, Office of Multicultural Affairs; Dorothy Rigby, financial aid counselor, Student Financial Services; George Sampson, summer swim camp counselor, Physical Education and Athletics; and Dane Wolfrom, summer swim camp counselor, Physical Education and Athletics.

Get to know Assistant Professor Diana Leonard

The following Q&A is part of a series created by the college dean’s office to introduce new faculty. Get to know Assistant Professor of Psychology Diana Leonard, who joins the faculty this fall, in the interview below.

Education: Ph.D. 2012 University of California, Santa Barbara; B.A. 2004, cum laude, Northwestern University

Research and teaching interests: Identity, social judgments, and categorization—particularly related to social justice and intergroup conflict.

What excites you about joining the L&C community?

I am excited by Lewis & Clark’s emphasis on intellectual exploration and discovery. Everyone I have met, students and faculty alike, seem to be genuinely passionate about expanding their own intellectual lives through a community of scholarship. I can’t wait to be a part of that! 

Describe the current trajectory of your scholarly research.

In my research I seek to understand how emotions shape intergroup relations. Specifically, I study how the emotions we feel as a consequence of our social identities alter three processes: intergroup reconciliation, perceived intergroup similarity, and reactions to group disadvantage. I am very excited to study these themes in the context of the dynamic city of Portland. For example, I look forward to investigating the emotions that are experienced by protesters before and after they engage in civil disobedience. How do these emotions differ when the protesters consider their identities as citizens of Portland versus members of a niche political group? This and other questions about social identity and emotion drive my program of research. 

What kind of hobbies or special activities do you enjoy outside of work?

I enjoy trying new foods and craft beers so I am very excited about all that Portland has to offer! I also enjoy knitting and have an ever-growing collection of jewel-toned yarns that I like to work with, especially for hats and scarves. 

What were your childhood goals/aspirations?

When I was young I wanted to be a singer and I had a great time performing as a member of the New York Metropolitan Opera children’s chorus. Then I hit puberty and discovered stage fright.

What are you listening to in your car right now?

I love NPR’s Fresh Air with Terry Gross, but recently I have also been getting into Stuff You Missed in History Class from I especially enjoy their updates on history’s mysteries like their recent episode on the search for Amelia Earhart. 

What was your favorite childhood story?

I loved Alice in Wonderland because of its poetry, logic puzzles, and fantastical characters.  

For more information:

Comings and Goings