Mayra Lopez-Humphreys – EXTENDED BIO

Dr. Mayra Lopez-Humphreys is a native New Yorker, professor, and pastor with over 18 years of experience in neighborhood engagement.  A significant part of Dr. Lopez-Humphreys’ life and work has been dedicated to building bridges across culture, religion, economic, and racial boundaries. 

The role of bridging divides has vividly expressed itself in her role as an assistant professor of the undergraduate social work department at Nyack College, where she has taught courses in diversity, social welfare policy and field practice.  Dr. Lopez-Humphreys’ philosophy of education is to prepare students to radically engage a rapid paced, global city with faith, compassion and intellect.

Dr. Lopez-Humphreys is a researcher with the sensibilities of a practitioner.  This has allowed her to bring a very particular lens to research in the area of critical multiculturalism and restorative practices. In this capacity she has presented at numerous conferences. Mayra has also authored a number of peer-reviewed scholarly articles, including:  The evolution and transformation of the role of service recipients in child welfare and mental disabilities.

Her practice/organizational leadership experience has centered on youth development and community organizing. Mayra has designed a number of asset-based programs that focus on the fostering and integration of participant’s social, spiritual and cultural capital. In the Harlem community, she is currently developing initiatives that can leverage indigenous social capital for the purposes of supporting locally owned businesses.

Mayra is also the associate pastor at Metro Hope Covenant Church, a multi-ethnic church that meets in Harlem’s historic National Black Theater.  Metro Hope is part of a larger church movement with a heart for the city, drawing artists, students, young families and professionals from Greater Harlem and the metro area.  It is Mayra’s continual privilege and passion to journey with emerging generations, as they work through their faith in a culture constantly challenging the church to be the church.

Mayra presently is proud to call East Harlem her home, with her husband, Jose, and her six year-old, Javier.