Kevin Nadal

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Kevin Nadal
Nadal in 2009.jpg
Nadal at Filipino Film Festival
Born (1978-05-07) 7 May 1978 (age 40)
Santa Clara, CA
Residence New York City
Nationality American
Occupation Professor, author, activist
Title Professor
Spouse(s) RJ Kaleohano Mendoza-Nadal
Awards American Psychological Association 2017 Early Career Award for Distinguished Contributions to Psychology in the Public Interest
Academic background
Doctoral advisor Derald Wing Sue
Academic work
Discipline Psychology
Sub-discipline Multicultural Psychology, Counseling Psychology, Filipino American Studies, Queer Studies
Institutions John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Graduate Center, CUNY
Notable works Filipino American Psychology: A Handbook of Theory, Research, and Clinical Practice / That's So Gay! Microaggressions and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community / Sage Encyclopedia of Psychology and Gender

Kevin Nadal (born May 7, 1978) is an author, activist, comedian, and professor of psychology. He is a researcher and leading expert on the effects of microaggressions on racial/ ethnic minority people and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) people.[1][2] He has appeared on Fox News, The History Channel, CBS News, and PBS.[3][4] and is a contributor to the Huffington Post and Buzzfeed.

Education and academic career[edit]

Nadal graduated with his bachelor's degrees in psychology and political science from the University of California, Irvine. He received a Master's in counseling from Michigan State University. He received his Ph.D. in counseling psychology from Columbia University in 2008. He is currently a Full Professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and The Graduate Center, CUNY in New York City. He was granted tenure and promotion to Associate Professor after three years as an Assistant Professor; he was promoted to Full Professor five years later.[5]

Nadal's research concentrates on race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender. His writings also focus on the concept of racial microaggressions, and other microaggressions or subtle forms of discrimination towards racial/ethnic minorities, women, and LGBTQ populations.[1][2] He is the author of over 100+ publications in the fields of psychology and education.[6][7] Some of these include his published Racial and Ethnic Microaggression Scale,[8] as well as Women and Mental Disorders: a four-volume set which highlights women's psychological health from a feminist and multicultural perspective.[9]

From 2014 to 2017, Nadal was appointed as the Executive Director of CLAGS: the Center for LGBTQ Studies (formerly known as Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies) at The Graduate Center, CUNY.[2] He is documented as the first person of color to hold this position in the organization's conception in 1991. In this position, he founded the LGBTQ Scholars of Color National Network- which has gathered national conferences. Through CLAGS, he also created the José Esteban Muñoz Award to honor individuals who have advanced LGBTQ Studies through their activism. Past winners of the award (including Janet Mock, Jose Antonio Vargas, Frenchie Davis, and Nathan Lee Graham) have each participated in a public conversation with Nadal during LGBT Pride Month in New York in June.[10]

Dr. Kevin Nadal speaking at the White House Filipino American History Month Celebration in 2016

From 2015 to 2017, Nadal became the president of the Asian American Psychological Association- the oldest national organization advocating for Asian American mental health. He is noted as being the first openly gay person to hold this position since the organization's founding in 1972.[11] In the organization, Nadal also confounded the Division on Filipino Americans with Dr. E.J.R. David[12] and the Division on LGBTQQ people.[6]

Nadal is a national trustee of the Filipino American National Historical Society, also known as FANHS.[13] He was also the head conference coordinator of the FANHS biennial national conference in New York City in June 2016. [14]

Filipino American Psychology and Filipino American Studies[edit]

Dr. Nadal's book Filipino American Psychology: A Handbook of Theory, Research, and Clinical Practice gained attention in the US and the Philippines for being the first comprehensive book on Filipino American mental health issues.[15][16][17][18][19] In 2009, he toured all over the United States and Canada, promoting the book, speaking at over 30 colleges and universities, while also performing standup comedy, and poetry.[20]

Nadal's second book, Filipino American Psychology: A Collection of Personal Narratives was released in July 2010. It contains stories from an array of Filipino American professors, artists, activists, and students.[21]

In 2015, Nadal released Filipinos in New York City in collaboration with the Filipino American National Historical Society Metropolitan New York Chapter. Published by Arcadia Publishing, as part of the Images of America Series, the book highlights the history of Filipino Americans in New York City from 1888 to the present.[22]

Microaggressions Research[edit]

Nadal is one of the leading researchers who have contributed to Microaggression Theory. He is a co-author on the 2007 American Psychologist article on racial microaggressions, alongside his academic mentor Dr. Derald Wing Sue. As of December 2016, the article had been cited over 1650 times in academic journals.[23]

Nadal has written about racial micoaggressions towards various groups, including African Americans, Latino Americans, Asian Americans, and Filipino Americans. He created and published the Racial and Ethnic Microaggressions Scale in the Journal of Counseling Psychology in 2011; it was the first-known quantitative scale to measure microaggressions.[24]

Dr. Kevin Nadal speaking at U.S. Capitol Building In October 2016

Nadal was the first to research "sexual orientation microaggressions" and "gender identity microaggressions."[25] In 2013, Nadal released That's So Gay!' Microaggressions and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community (published by the American Psychological Association)[26]. Since Nadal's earliest writings on microaggressions toward LGBT people, dozens of academic articles on the topic have emerged.[27]

Nadal's newest book Microaggressions and Traumatic Stress (American Psychological Association, 2018) explores "how regular exposure to subtle discrimination can, over time, elicit similar symptoms to severe trauma."[28]

Entertainment career[edit]

Prior to academia, Nadal had been a comedian, actor, and performance artist who had performed at venues all over the United States and Canada. He performed three one-man shows at venues in New York City like the Nuyorican Poets Cafe, Bowery Poetry Club, the Actors Temple, and the Kraine Theater. In 2006, he performed a cabaret show called Psychotherapy at the Duplex in New York. He has performed at hundreds of colleges and universities all over the country, as well as national Filipino American, Asian American, and LGBTQ conferences and conventions.[3][29] He was also featured in the independent film, Brown Soup Thing in 2008.[30]

Nadal was featured in the PBS documentary The Hidden Dream (2009) starring Charmaine Clamor[31], as well as the Emmy-nominated The Ties that Bind: Filipinos in New York which was hosted and produced by Ernabel Demillo.[32]

In 2014, Nadal launched Out Talk with Dr. Kevin Nadal - an online talkshow devoted to social justice issues, produced by John Jay College of Criminal Justice.[33][34] Guests have included Jaygee Macapugay, Wade Davis, and Nicole Ponseca.

For Filipino American History Month (which is celebrated in October) in 2016, Nadal collaborated with Emmy-award winning documentarian Marissa Aroy, on her short film TGIF- Thank God I'm Filipino! [35]

Personal life[edit]

Nadal is the son of Leo and Charity Nadal of Numancia, Aklan and Malinao, Aklan in the Philippines.[18] Nadal reports that his parents were the first in their families to emigrate (his mother in 1965, his father in 1969).[36]

Nadal was raised in Fremont, California[37] which he described as "a large Filipino-American community in the San Francisco Bay Area"; he also reports his "high school was about 40% Filipino."[36] During his high school years, Nadal reports being bullied for being gay.[38] Since 2010, he has become vocal about ending bullying in schools.[39]

During his college years at University of California, Irvine, Nadal was president of Kababayan- the Filipino American college student organization.[36]

Nadal lived in East Lansing, Michigan when he pursued a master's degree at Michigan State University.[40] In 2002, Nadal moved to New York City to pursue a doctoral degree in Counseling Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University.[41] During this time, Nadal was mentored by renowned psychologist Derald Wing Sue.[40] Sue later wrote the foreword for Nadal's first book, Filipino American Psychology.[42]

In 2005, The Guardian wrote an article called "The Man Who Married Himself"- describing Nadal's self-marriage and wedding ceremony. [43]

In 2013, Nadal proposed to community organizer, RJ Mendoza, via a surprise musical performance. The moment was covered by The Advocate.[44] The couple was married in 2014. Nadal reports that their wedding included "traditional Filipino and Hawaiian customs."[45]

Social Justice Advocacy[edit]

Nadal is known for advocating for causes relating to social justice. Through his research and writing, he has challenged people to be more active and vocal in fighting homophobia and transphobia[46]. He has written about the need for Filipino Americans to address colorism within their families and communities,[47] as well as anti-Black racism.[48] In 2017, Nadal published an article in the American Psychologist entitled "Let's Get In Formation": On Becoming a Psychologist-Activist in the 21st Century. Playing with the well-known song Formation by Beyonce Knowles, Nadal argues of the ethical responsibility for psychologists to "combat oppression on individual, interpersonal, group, and institutional levels."[49]

Desperate Housewives controversy[edit]

In 2007, Nadal gained national and international attention when he started an online petition against ABC Studios for the negative statements made about Philippine medical schools on the television show Desperate Housewives.[50] The petition gained hundreds of thousands of signatures in a few days on PetitionOnline (being noted as one of the fastest growing online petitions of all time).[51] This led to several media appearances, including an interview with Bill O'Reilly on the O'Reilly Factor.[3]

Brown Asian Movement[edit]

Nadal has been vocal about the experiences of invisibility and marginalization of Filipino Americans and other "Brown Asians" in the general Asian American community.[52] As part of his work with the Filipino American National Historical Society, Nadal has been described how Filipino Americans have historically felt like "Forgotten Asian Americans" and how Filipino American History Month was created in response.[53]

As part of his presidential platform for the Asian American Psychological Association, Nadal vocalized the need for Asian Americans to be vocal and mindful of the underrepresentation of Filipino, South Asian, and Southeast Asian Americans within Asian American communities.[11] In October 2016, Nadal (along with Dr. E.J.R. David, Ali Mattu, Razia Kosi, and Ernabel Demillo), wrote an open letter to the New York Times for their lack of Filipino American representation in a video segment that described Filipino American experiences. Given that Filipino Americans and South Asian Americans are each 20% of the Asian American population, they argue that Brown Asians need to be more visible within the Asian American community. [54][55]

Racism within LGBTQ Communities[edit]

Nadal has been vocal about addressing intersectionalities within LGBTQ communities- particularly regarding the historic racism toward LGBTQ people of color. He has spoken about the racial microaggressions LGBTQ people of color experience in dating and sexual relationships [56], as well as the systemic colorblindness and marginalization of people of color in Queer Studies.[57]

In 2014, Nadal formed the LGBTQ Scholars of Color National Network as a way to provide support for LGBTQ people of color in academia who experience racism, heterosexism, and sexism.[58]

As Executive Director of CLAGS in 2016, Nadal was very vocal about addressing racism and Islamophobia in response to the Pulse tragedy in Orlando.[59] Specifically, he spoke about the mainstream and White LGBTQ erasure of race among discussions regarding the mostly Latinx victims. He stated: "“Let’s be intentional of what we are speaking of and honor all those intersectionalities, even if it makes us feel uncomfortable or excluded because we have privileged identities that might not be a part of what we’re speaking of."[60]

Awards and Recognitions[edit]

Nadal has received many accolades for his achievements - including academic awards, community awards, and media recognitions.

In 2006, Nadal was named one of the hottest bachelors of People Magazine.[61]

Nadal received Early Career Awards from the American Psychological Association Minority Fellowship Program, the APA Society for the Psychological Study of Racial and Ethnic Issues, and the Asian American Psychological Association.[6] He was also named a Rising Star by the National Multicultural Conference and Summit.[62]

In 2013, BuzzFeed listed Nadal as one of 27 "Filipinos who make you proud to be pinoy".[63] Two years later, Buzzfeed listed Nadal as one of 34 Filipino American trailblazers.[64]

In April 2015, Nadal received John Jay College's Scholarly Excellence Award.[65]

In October 2015, Nadal was named one of the Outstanding Filipino Americans of New York.[66]

In December 2016, the American Psychological Association announced that Nadal was the 2017 recipient of the Early Career Award for Distinguished Contributions to Psychology in the Public Interest. The coveted award recognizes “a single extraordinary achievement or a lifetime of outstanding contributions.” The highly prestigious award includes an honorarium, an opportunity to present at the APA Annual Convention, and an invitation to submit a paper to the American Psychologist.[67]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Kevin Nadal Faculty Profile at John Jay College". 
  2. ^ a b c "Kevin Nadal Faculty Profile at The Graduate Center". 
  3. ^ a b c "Kevin Nadal's IMDB page". 
  4. ^ "CBS News: To Suffer in Silence". 
  5. ^ "Nadal 2017 Curriculum Vitae". 
  6. ^ a b c "American Psychological Association Minority Fellowship Program Awards". 
  7. ^ "The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues Congressional Lunch Seminar". 
  8. ^ ""Journal of Counseling Psychology"". 
  9. ^ "Women and Mental Disorders". 
  10. ^ "GC News - June 2017". 
  11. ^ a b "AAPA President's Message (2015), Last retrieved January 2, 2018". 
  12. ^ "Celebrating the Rapid Growth of Filipino American Psychology". 
  13. ^ "FANHS Board of Trustees". 
  14. ^ ""Fil-Am historians, activists gather in New York"". 
  15. ^ "Philippine News". 
  16. ^ "One man's quest to seek Filipino identity". 
  17. ^ "Filipino American Psychology,". 
  18. ^ a b "Aklanon Author, Aklan Forum". 
  19. ^ "First Filipino American Psychology Book". 
  20. ^ ", Kevin Nadal adds author to his resume". 
  21. ^ "Filipino American Psychology: A Collection of Personal Narratives". 
  22. ^ "Bustamante, C. (2005). New York Daily News". 
  23. ^ "Google Scholar Citations - December 2016". 
  24. ^ "Racial and Ethnic Microaggressions Scale" (PDF). 
  25. ^ ""Sexual Orientation Microaggressions: "Death by a Thousand Cuts" for Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Youth"". 
  26. ^ Cheng, S.A. (2014). "A Review of "That's so gay! Microaggressions and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community"". Journal of GLBT Family Studies. 
  27. ^ Nadal, K.; et al. (2016). "Microaggressions Toward Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Genderqueer People: A Review of the Literature". 
  28. ^ "Microaggressions and Traumatic Stress". 
  29. ^ "Kevin Nadal Bio on". 
  30. ^ "Brown Soup Thing IMDB page". 
  31. ^ ""The Hidden Dream" (2010) IMDB page". 
  32. ^ "The Ties that Bind: Filipinos in New York on Youtube". 
  33. ^ ""Out Talk with Dr. Kevin Nadal"". 
  34. ^ ""Videos of Out Talk with Dr. Kevin Nadal"". 
  35. ^ Nadal, Kevin. "Why We Celebrate Filipino American History Month". 
  36. ^ a b c "On Becoming Filipino American". 
  37. ^ "Nadal, K. (2016) Why Queer and Trans Studies are Important, Huffington Post". 
  38. ^ "Kevin Nadal shares in new book the 'immense pain' of being gay and bullied". 
  39. ^ "Filipino psychologist tackles bullying". 
  40. ^ a b "RWJF New Connections Interview with Kevin Nadal". 
  41. ^ "An Empire Decade: The Story of Dr. Kevin Nadal". 
  42. ^ "John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Filipino American Psychology". 
  43. ^ "Krum, Sharon (2005, May). The man who married himself. The Guardian". 
  44. ^ "Professor shocks partner with surprise musical proposal". 
  45. ^ "Nadal, Kevin (2015, October). The Honeymoon is Over: What's Next for LGBTQ People After Marriage, Huffington Post". 
  46. ^ "Nadal, K. (2016, August). Rainbow Profile Pictures Didn't End Homophobia, Huffington Post". 
  47. ^ "Nadal, Kevin (2017, July). The Power of Colorism. Huffington Post". 
  48. ^ "Dear Filipino Americans, Let's Talk about Charlottesville". 
  49. ^ ""Let's Get In Formation": On Becoming a Psychologist-Activist in the 21st Century"". 
  50. ^ "'Housewives' Filipino joke draws ire". 
  51. ^ "Philippine Star. Desperate Housewives Producers Say Sorry to Pinoys". 
  52. ^ "Nadal, K. (2011). Filipino American Psychology. Wiley". 
  53. ^ "Why we celebrate Filipino American History Month". 
  54. ^ "An Open Letter to the New York Times who Told Brown Asians They Don't Matter". 
  55. ^ "Rodriguez, M. (2016, October 17). South Asians, Filipinos call out lack of inclusion in 'Times' video about racism. Mic". 
  56. ^ "Rodriguez, M. (2015, Sept 15). This Is What It's Like to Log Into Grindr as a Person of Color. Mic". 
  57. ^ "The Intersection of Queer Theory and Empirical Methods: Visions for CLAGS, the Center for LGBTQ Studies". 
  58. ^ "LGBTQ Scholars of Color Network Webpage". 
  59. ^ "Orlando Tragedy: A Message of Queer Love from Kevin Nadal, A statement from the executive director of CLAGS: The Center for LGBTQ Studies". 
  60. ^ "Grad Center Event Discusses Pulse Aftermath/". 
  61. ^ "People Magazine Hottest Bachelors 2006". 
  62. ^ "National Multicultural Conference and Summit 2017 Honorees". 
  63. ^ "Ortile, M. (2003, June). 27 Filipinos who make you proud to be pinoy. Buzzfeed". 
  64. ^ "Tan, A. (2015). 34 Filipino American trailblazers. Buzzfeed". 
  65. ^ "John Jay College News". 
  66. ^ "2015 Outstanding Filipino Americans of New York". 
  67. ^ "Graduate Center News". 

External links[edit]