Dr. Annalisa Enrile
Education: BA ’96, MSW ’00, PhD ’06 from UCLA
Profession: International Activist and Clinical Associate Professor, USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work

“I’m not your white, liberal, burn your bra feminist. I like my bra, I like lipstick.”

Having been in an abusive relationship during most of her senior year of high school and freshman year of college, Dr. Enrile dropped out of school. But, with the support of her family, who never blamed her for being a victim, she “was able to get back on track.” However, learning about the statistics, she wondered “what about girls who don’t have this? It actually doesn’t get better only because it got better for me. So, what can I do to make it better?”

“I’m a strong believer that there are different types of education. I was just lucky enough to have the education that gave me these magic letter after my name. But I don’t think that that makes me more special than say a mother that works in the community every day with her children’s school.”

In her sophomore year of college, Dr. Enrile became involved in the women’s rights movement. To date, she has worked with domestic workers, agricultural workers, and sex trafficking victims. She questions how girls are raised and treated in the US and in the Philippines, which is the largest export of workers. Through a transnational feminist lens, Dr. Enrile explores human rights, colonization, migration, and power. Additionally, she has done clinical work with girls and communities. Currently, she is working with La Mariposa Center for Change to write and publish women’s stories and on a project called Keeping it 100 project, where 100 girls are convened in different cities to hear about what they’re living through.

Who are boss ladies in your life?

Jorja Leap, Pauline Agbayani, Marlene Wong, Liza Maza and the “shit load of boss ladies” who run the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work

Knowing that she’s one of a few Filipinas in the field of social work, Dr. Enrile approaches her work “with a lot of humility and a lot of respect for the community. I think that my education gives me the privilege of speaking the community’s truth but I never want it to be a situation where I assume what the community is going to say. I always check back. I always make sure I have roots in the community…And also with a deep sense of responsibility…It can’t just be like I want to go in there and be all hyped and do something for the community or make a bunch of money and give it back. The process also matters.”

Despite identifying racism and sexism, whether blatant or through microaggressions, as barriers to her work, her tenacity, drive and power make her one badass BOSS LADY.

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