Elizabeth MacMahon-Herrera, LISW, a founding member of Our Bodies Ourselves, is a social worker whose work has involved family and child therapy and developing innovative educational and mental health programs for multi-ethnic communities.
Elizabeth has taught, trained and consulted with teachers, paraprofessionals and mental health providers in diverse settings in Boston, New York City and New Mexico, where she currently resides. She has worked at the Judge Baker Children’s Center, the Guidance Center (Cambridge, Mass.), Simmons School of Social Work, the Child Center Of New York, University of New Mexico, Santa Fe Community College and Rio Rancho public schools.
She is a cofounder of Amigas Latinas en Accion pro-Salud (ALAS) and producer of the first Spanish language video on AIDS in the U.S.
Her movement around the country and between the United States and Colombia, where she was born, has enriched her personal life, enabling her to showcase aspects of Latino culture through articles, videos, radio shows, and as an OBOS co-founder.
Elizabeth’s work is informed by principles of Paulo Freire’s “Pedagogy of the Oppressed” and Michael White’s narrative therapy teachings, as well as by activists of color and, most directly, by many incredible women.
She will be spending these next years retired from the bureaucratic social service and educational systems which have often tried to prevent her from developing her creative and divergent ideas.
She’s leaving those systems upon which, like most of us, she depended for a living. She hopes to find ways in which her advocacy can benefit children and families who are poor in Bogota, Colombia where she now expects to live part-time.
She will also be writing about her family’s migration story, dedicating it to her mother and father, recently deceased, who taught and showed her how migrants truly do make countries stronger.