Irma Alicia Velásquez Nimatuj
Irma Alicia Velásquez Nimatuj, PhD, is a journalist, social anthropologist, author, academic and international spokeswoman. Dr. Velásquez Nimatuj is the first Maya-K'iche' woman to earn a doctorate in social anthropology and she initiated the court case that made racial discrimination illegal in Guatemala. She has won numerous academic fellowships and awards for her journalism. She has been a visiting professor at Duke University, University of Texas in Austin, Brown University and Stanford. She was a member of the Latin American Consulting Group of Indigenous Leaders for UNICEF and participates in the United Nations' Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. She is the author of Pueblos Indígenas, Estado y Lucha por Tierra en Guatemala (2008) and Luna (2019). She writes a weekly newspaper column in the daily newspaper El Periódico and through both her political and academic efforts seeks to create viable and realistic ways to create equality for indigenous people and a truly participatory democracy in Guatemala. Irma Alicia is the lead protagonist in the documentary film 500 YEARS.