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Author: Sonia M. Gangotena, Ph. D.
Sonia Gangotena earned her Ph.D. and M.A. in Speech Communication from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN. Her areas of research and interest are organizational and group communication, health communication, international-intercultural communication, and political persuasion. Her B.A is in Child Psychology and Nursery School Education, an interest that she pursued at the master’s level through counseling courses and an almost three-year directed practicum in child counseling.
Dr. Gangotena brings into the classroom not only her education but her years of experience as an educator, a business manager in both the public and private sectors, and an educational and corporate consultant. Among her various endeavors is her contribution to the establishment and coordination of the Foreign Studies Degree Program, a bachelor’s degree program at the University of Minnesota. She was also one of the founders and a board member of the Universidad de San Francisco de Quito (now with campuses in Florida and in Ecuador) where she also designed the College of Communication. In her work with Brazos Valley Community Action, and with the ChildreNiños Bilingual Education Foundation, she has trained children caseworkers and preschool directors and teachers.
Sonia Gangotena has taught at Texas A&M University, the University of Minnesota, and the University of Houston-Downtown, and has trained managers at various management oriented training centers. She teaches graduate courses in management, communications, and educational leadership in the U.S. and overseas. She has experience developing and designing instructional curriculum in all the mentioned subjects and has used these skills through Central Michigan University, the Latin American University for Leadership, and the Universidad de San Francisco de Quito.
Dr. Gangotena’s concern in community service has been a motivating factor behind her career. She is the founder and C.E.O. of Eladev and founder and owner of Gangotena Consultants and Trainers. Sonia Gangotena also has begun Joy Recovery CCM, a company oriented to minister to the bereaved. At present she is the president of the Board of Directors of the Brazos School for Inquiry and Creativity, a charter school with three campuses in Bryan and Houston. She served on the board of the Brazos Valley Symphony and is a past-President of the Board of Directors of ChildreNiños-Bicultural-Bilingual Education Foundation.
Dr. Gangotena was one of the founders and served as Secretary of the Board and head of the Advisory Board of Houston’s first Ecuadorian-American Chamber of Commerce. She has also worked as a CEO for CEGAN, a family business, as manager for Citibank-Ecuador, as a trainer in supervisory management for Citibank-Latin America, and as a manager for Dow Chemical/Life. For the Institute of the Child and Family, headed by Ecuador’s First Lady, Dr. Gangotena was the coordinator of Child Protection Communication and a researcher in Maternal-Infant Health, Communication, and Education. Dr. Gangotena was Director of Development for the Center for Hispanic Advocacy and editor-at-large of their flagship publication, the Hispanic Advocate and Chair of the National Republican Hispanic Assembly of Brazos County.
Through Gangotena Consultants and Trainers, Dr. Gangotena has worked for large and small organizations in various endeavors. Some of the businesses she has consulted/trained for are Powell Industries, Citibank-Ecuador, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Control Data Corporation, and others. Sonia Gangotena has also been sought as a speaker on a variety of topics ranging from education to international politics. In the Brazos Valley, Texas, she has conducted workshops and seminars on health and communication for health personnel and on education and communication for preschool teachers and administrators.
Dr. Gangotena has taught courses in public speaking at Blinn College Bryan Campus since 1998. While at Blinn, she has actively participated in various professional development opportunities that the College offers to faculty. As a member of the Bryan Blinn Professional Association, she has chaired various committees, and led it as its president. She has also been a member of the Professional Development Committee, the Board of the Christian Faculty Network that she helped start, Secretary of the Blinn College Assessment Council, Secretary of the Blinn Faculty Senate well as faculty advisor to College Republicans and to Pro-Life Buccaneers.
Dr. Sonia M. Gangotena has been honored with various awards: Mortar Board, the World Bank’s McNamara Fellowship, Phi Kappa, the Order of Ski-U-Mah, and scholarships from the Fulbright organization and from the Organization of American States. Dr. Gangotena was awarded the Ronald Reagan Gold Medal (2004) by the National Republican Congressional Committee and was elected to represent Texas Congressional District 17 at the 2004 Republican Convention in New York.
Dr. Gangotena work has been recognized by various publications such as the Directory of American Scholars, Who’s Who Among Women in Communications, Lexington’s Who’s Who, International Women of the Year, The International Who’s Who, Who’s Who Among Entrepreneurs, Who’s Who in the Media and Communications (1998-99), and Who’s Who Among International Professionals.