Natalia Molina is a Professor in the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California. She is the author of two award-winning books, How Race Is Made in America: Immigration, Citizenship, and the Historical Power of Racial Scripts and Fit to Be Citizens?: Public Health and Race in Los Angeles, 1879-1940. Her work examines the interconnectedness of racial and ethnic communities through her concept of "racial scripts" which looks at how practices, customs, policies and laws that are directed at one group and are readily available and hence easily applied to other groups. Professor Molina is currently finishing her book, Place-Makers: How Mexican Immigrants Made Home in Los Angeles and beginning research on a new book, The Silent Hands that Shaped the Huntington: A History of Its Mexican Workers.
Professor Molina is a 2020 MacArthur Fellow. She has also been the recipient of major, nationally competitive awards including those from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, and Mellon Foundation. She is also the recipient of a university-wide Distinguished Teaching Award.