His most recent book Minding the Obligation Gap in Community Colleges and Beyond: Theory and Practice in Achieving Educational Equity (Peter Lang 2020) is a “ justice-centered book geared specifically for community college practitioners interested in achieving campus-wide educational equity.” This book, unlike any of its kind, provides theory and practice to reform community colleges to close the ever-increasing equity gap created by the current systems. Lasana’s other publications include African-American Men in College (Jossey-Bass 2006), The State of Black Arizona (ASU 2008), Be A Father to Your Child: Real Talk from Black Men of the Hip Hop Generation (Soft Skull 2008), The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life (Atria 2008), and Icons of Black America (Greenwood 2011). The theme that ties all of these publications together is Lasana’s work consistently operating at the intersection of cultural identity and organizational success.
Currently, Lasana resides in Oakland, CA but he is no visitor; he is actually an LA native. Although his roots are in California, Lasana’s expertise has taken him all over the United States, abroad in Beijing, China, and Accra, Ghana. Aside from his fondness of traveling, Lasana enjoys eating at locally-owned restaurants all over Oakland, reading, watching The Mandalorian, and meditating to jump-start his day. Lasana’s passion for social justice developed during his time at Texas State University where he earned his degree of Bachelor of Arts, History and Speech Communications. As well as being a part of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Mu Nu Chapter, Lasana and his peers educated themselves about culture, history, and racial injustices. Lasana continued his formal education at Arizona State University and graduated in 2012 with his Master of Arts in History. He continued at Arizona State University professionally as the Co-Founder and Program Coordinator of the African American Men of ASU (AAMASU) where he developed a college pipeline program focused African American men recruitment and retention.
During his tenure at ASU, Lasana served as a Student Success Coordinator in the Multicultural Student Center and as the founding Program Coordinator for the Center for the Study of Race and Democracy (CSRD). In 2012, he accepted the position as the Director of College Student Services and Multicultural Affairs at Estrella Mountain Community College. In this role, he developed the Learners Invested in Networking and Knowledge (LINK) program to positively impact the persistence and completion rates of EMCC students with a focus on underserved students. Wanting to return to his home state of California, Lasana accepted the position of Director of Student Activities and Campus Life at Merritt College in Oakland, California where he served on various committees addressing issues of student success, program development, and the President’s management team. He was soon promoted to the Dean of Special Programs and Grants where he oversaw the operations of Admissions and Records, Financial Aid, Student Orientation, Student Life, and the Veterans Center. This experience allowed him to flex his skills in hosting workshops, panels and lecturers addressing issues of educational equity and campus climate.
The Chancellor of Peralta Community College District respected Lasana’s approach toward student success and invited him to serve as the Assistant Vice Chancellor of Equity and Student Success. A highlight of his experience at PCCD was his work with faculty, staff, students and district partners to realize the programs and results outlined in the Student Equity Plans designed to address the equity gaps at the Peralta Colleges amongst African American, LatinX, Asian/Pacific Islander, and First Nations students. In 2016 he accepted the role as the inaugural Dean of Student Equity and Support Programs (SESP) at Skyline College where he founded and established the Equity Institute designed to provide equity-centered professional development experiences and publish research for organizations committed to showing up differently in the areas of culture, race, gender, and institutional equity. In this role, Lasana provided administrative support for the Categorical programs, supported the efforts of the Student Equity and Achievement Program (SEA) and developed experiences to enhance cultural fluency throughout the campus. These experiences included the creation of the Equity Summit and the Equity Training Series (ETS) which won the J. Russell Kent Award for Innovation from the San Mateo County School Boards Association (SMCSBA).
His work in racial literacy at Skyline led to his founding of the Equity Institute EI) at Skyline College and served as its first Executive Director. Along with his EI team, they co-created the Equity Academies for Instructional Faculty, Academic Advisors/Counselors, and Student Affairs/Services Professionals that has served over 600 faculty, staff and administrators at 37 different institutions.
For over 20 years, Lasana has served as Lead Consultant at Hotep Consultants providing transformative consultation to academic organizations, community based organizations, and corporations, using his engaging, multimedia based presentations to provide insight and a way forward for hundreds of institutions throughout the nation. Organizations partner with Lasana to enhance their competencies in the areas of educational equity, racial justice, anti-Blackness, antiracism/antisexism and cultural fluency. For an example of Lasana’s approach toward this transformative with please take time to view one of his recent webinars with CORA Learning on Addressing Anti-Blackness on Campus: Implications for Educators and Institutions.
- Educational Equity, Racial Justice, Anti-Blackness, Antiracism/Antisexism and Cultural Fluency
- African-American Men in College
- Be A Father to Your Child: Real Talk from Black Men of the Hip Hop Generation
- Icons of Black America