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  • Professor of Latinx Food Studies and Food Justice, Department of Latin American and Iberian Cultures University of Southern California

  • In 2022, Sarah received a media grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to create a documentary series, "Abuelitas on the Borderlands."  She was the creator, producer, and co-executive producer of “Abuelitas on the Borderlands” a 4-part documentary film series filmed in Tucson, AZ, El Paso, Texas, San Diego, Los Angeles, Puebla and Mérida, Mexico. 

  • Creator and Producer of “Abuelita’s Kitchen: Mexican Food Stories” documentary film, 2022. 

  • Food justice activist involved in the fight for legalization of the street vending in Los Angeles

  • Garden School Foundation Executive Board member 


  • Cyclist, lover of Oaxacan food and culture, and mother of two teenage boys

Sarah Portnoy, PhD

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Contemporary Los Angeles can increasingly be considered a part of Latin America. Only 200 miles from the border with Mexico, it has the largest, most diverse population of Latinos in the United States—and reportedly the second largest population of Mexicans outside of Mexico City. It also has one of the most diverse representations of Latino gastronomy in the United States, featuring the cuisine of nearly every region of Mexico, countries such as Peru, Argentina, Guatemala and El Salvador, as well as an incredible variety of Asian-Latin fusion cuisine.

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