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Photo by Juliana Rico

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Sarah Rafael García is an author, community educator, and performance ethnographer born in Brownsville, Tejas and raised in Santa Ana, California. First generation everything...

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Sarah Rafael García is an award-winning author, artist and multimedia literary arts advocate with over 15 years of experience. She earned her M.F.A. in Creative Writing with an emphasis in Fiction and cognate in Media Studies from Texas State University. As a child of immigrants and a first-generation university graduate, she knows first-hand what it means to fail and triumph in life. Her first book Las Niñas (2008) speaks to her loss and upbringing, and her second book, SanTana’s Fairy Tales (2017), is part of an oral history multimedia exhibition awarded by the Andy Warhol Foundation, and most recently a required Ethnic Studies text in the Santa Ana Unified School District. She has co-edited various anthologies, including pariahs: writing from outside the margins (2016) and Speculative Fiction for Dreamers (2021), among other publications. García is founder of the LibroMobile Arts Cooperative (LMAC) including Barrio Writers (2009), LibroMobile (2016) and Crear Studio (2017). In 2023, she was honored as a Woman of Distinction by State Senator Tom J. Umberg and a Kickass Woman by Orange Coast Magazine.


In 2018, she was honored as an Emerging Artist at the 19th Annual OC Arts Awards. In 2019, she was recognized as an inaugural ASU Desert Nights, Rising Stars Fellow, and recipient of the UH Katherine G. McGovern College of the Arts-Project Row Houses Fellowship. Earlier recognitions include an award for “Outstanding Contributions to Education,” by the O.C. Department of Education in 2011 and in 2010 Congressman Lou Correa honored her with the “Women Making a Difference” award.
As a Chicana multimedia artist, García addresses what it means to be a child Spanish speaker, a teen trauma survivor, a nontraditional M.F.A graduate in the American School System — and now an arts leader who aspires to build equity and visibility for her BIPOC community in Orange County via the LibroMobile Arts Cooperative. Her work in the digital humanities (DH) began as a 2020 USLDH-Mellon Grantee with the University of Houston US Latino Digital Humanities Center and includes virtual timelines, Mapping Santa Ana, the Modesta Ávila archives and Mapping BIPOC Bookstores, along with DH training for-and-by the community and Ethnofiction Through Contemporary Narratives in classrooms.


Currently, she splits her time teaching creative writing and establishing collaborative arts programming through the digital humanities, which includes community-based partnerships with UCI Libraries & Special Collections and the Digital Ethnic Futures Consortium at CSUF. Sarah Rafael García is the Califronia State University, Fullerton Chicana/o Studies Department & Latinx Lab Visiting Professor of Creative Writing for the 2023-2025 academic years — she gives credit to her parents’ GED education and the migrant labor that brought her grandparents to the US as the source of her perseverance and foundation to her accomplishments.

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