2001 Plymouth Avenue North
Minneapolis, MN 55411
Connect with Us
Heidi Barajas, Executive Director
Heidi Barajas is the associate dean for engagement and faculty development in the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) and an associate professor (and founding chair) of postsecondary teaching and learning. She previously was coleader of the interim executive team guiding UROC from its May 2010 grand opening through March 2011.
Heidi has served as a core member of the University Northside Partnership and was a member of the Action Planning Team that shaped UROC strategic planning. She cochairs the advisory committee for the Hennepin University Partnership, serves on the oversight body for the county's AGRAD initiative to boost graduation rates and reduce achievement disparities, and is a board member of Hope Community, a neighborhood revitalization initiative in South Central Minneapolis.
As CEHD associate dean since 2007, Heidi has worked to link research and teaching with pressing community needs and to build long-term partnerships linking the Univeristy and community in collaboration toward common goals. A sociologist by training, Heidi joined the University of Minnesota faculty in 2000 as an assistant professor in General College. Her research, teaching and public service focus on institutional issues related to access and equity, especially how to build public schools that support students across differences of race, gender and class. She is a team leader for the Office of Public Engagement and an affiliate with the Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy and Development.
Heidi, who grew up in Riverside, Calif., received a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Minnesota as a National Science Foundation Fellow; she also holds a B.A. in Spanish and education and a master's degree in sociology from the University of Utah. She lives in Minneapolis and has four grown children and four grandchildren.
Makeda Zulu-Gillespie, Director of Community Outreach
Photo by Tobechi Tobechukwu
As director of community outreach for the University's Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center and the University Northside Partnership (UNP), Makeda Zulu-Gillespie serves as a bridge between the University and the North Minneapolis community. She coordinates the Community Affairs Committee, responds to community inquiries, represents UROC at community forums, and develops outreach and engagement activities to foster meaningful and sustainable partnerships between the University and community stakeholders.
A native of Minneapolis, Makeda has worked with youth, families, and communities to realize their self-defined goals for more than 15 years. She holds a B.A. in management from Grambling State University and is a member of the University of Minnesota President's Emerging Leaders program.
Makeda sees her role with UROC as one of establishing alliances that use the knowledge and power of communities in conjunction with the resources of the University to make a difference. She lives in North Minneapolis with her husband, Darrell, and two children who she says remind her daily of the importance of collective work and responsibility.
- Wokie Freeman, assistant executive director/director of operations and programs
- 612-626-8953 | email@example.com
- Lauren Martin, director of research
- 612-624-0435 | firstname.lastname@example.org
- Martin Adams, project director—research, innovation, and outreach
- 612-624-4618 | email@example.com
- Sara Axtell, community campus health liaison
- 612-625-0252 | firstname.lastname@example.org
- Leola Crawford, administrative specialist
- 612-624-6158 | email@example.com
- James De Sota, assistant to the executive director
- 612-624-4514 | firstname.lastname@example.org
- April Foster, community engagement coordinator, AmeriCorps VISTA
- 612-626-8952 | email@example.com
- Fred Maceno, community engagement coordinator, AmeriCorps VISTA
- 612-626-8952 | firstname.lastname@example.org
- Jon Luke Robertson, program associate
- 612-624-6410 | email@example.com
- Hawona Sullivan Janzen, gallery curator and special projects coordinator
- 612-626-1526 | firstname.lastname@example.org
The University of Minnesota UROC building at Plymouth and Penn avenues in North Minneapolis is open Monday–Friday
from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.