Leisy J. Abrego is Associate Professor in Chicana/o Studies at UCLA. Trained in sociology, she studies Central American migration, U.S. intervention in Central America, Latina/o/x families, and the production of “illegality” through U.S. immigration laws. She is the author of the award-winning book, Sacrificing Families: Navigating Laws, Labor, and Love Across Borders (Stanford University Press, 2014), and is co-author with Cecilia Menjívar and Leah Schmalzbauer of the foundational study Immigrant Families (Polity Press, 2016).
Professor Abrego’s numerous articles, which examine legal consciousness, illegality, and legal violence, have appeared in the American Journal of Sociology, Latino Studies, and Law & Social Inquiry, and also garnered numerous national awards. Most recently, her article, “On Silences: Salvadoran Refugees Then and Now” (Latino Studies, 2017) won the 2018 Best Article Award from the Latino Studies Section of the Latin American Studies Association. She also dedicates much of her time to supporting and advocating for refugees and immigrants by writing editorials and pro-bono expert declarations in asylum cases.