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David R. Ayon

David Ayon HeadshotDavid R. Ayón is Senior Fellow at the Center. His ongoing projects include Power Shift, a book-length study of Latino political empowerment focusing on the main Los Angeles-based actors; Focus Mexico/Enfoque México, a binational study of political relations between Mexico and leaders of Mexican origin in the U.S., and LA/DF, a program that equips LMU students to pursue binational career opportunities in the Los Angeles and Mexico City markets.

Ayón’s professional activities include serving as advisor to the polling firm Latino Decisions, writing a regular column for the Univision News website, participation as a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, serving on the editorial board of Foreign Affairs Latinoamérica, and serving as a director of the U.S.-Mexico Foundation.  Previously, he was senior advisor to the Mexico Institute of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and associate director of the California-Mexico Project of the USC School of International Relations. 

He is a contributor to edited books, reference works and publications including The Oxford Encyclopedia of Latinos and Latinas in the United States, Foreign Affairs Latinoamérica,The American Prospect and has contributed numerous essays to the op-ed and Sunday Opinion pages of the Los Angeles Times and other periodicals.  He has worked as analyst, consultant, and special producer for Spanish language television news during electoral cycles in the U.S. and in Mexico since 1992.

Educated at Princeton, Stanford and El Colegio de Mexico, Ayón has taught courses on politics, U.S.-Latin American relations and Latino Studies at six colleges and universities, including two campuses of the University of California, Stanford and USC, and was a Visiting Research Fellow at the Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies of UC San Diego.

Recent Publications

“Diaspora Politics, Migration, & U.S. Foreign Policy: Implications for U.S.- Latin American Relations,” (with Ana Margheritis) in Contemporary U.S.-Latin American Relations, 2nd Edition, edited by Jorge I. Dominguez and Rafael Fernández de Castro (Routledge, forthcoming 2015).

Foreign Affairs Latinoamérica (guest editor and contributor), 15:2 (April-June 2015): “El Giro Latino de Obama,” (with Ana Margheritis), “El Código Obama,” (interview of Dan Restrepo), “El Camino de Obama a La Habana,” (interview of Richard Feinberg).

The Legal Side of Mexican Immigration. Mexico Institute, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (2012)

Linking Development & Migration: A Binational U.S.-Mexico Dialogue. Mexico Institute, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (2011).

 “Migrants and the State: 1986–2006,” in Mexico’s Democratic Challenges: Politics, Government and Society. Andrew Selee and Jacqueline Peschard, editors (Stanford University Press, 2010).

“Overcoming Immigration Policy Failure and Enhancing U.S.-Mexico Cooperation on Migration” in The United States and Mexico: Towards a Strategic Partnership. Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Mexico Institute (2009).

Mobilizing Latino Immigrant Integration: From IRCA to the Ya Es Hora Citizenship Campaign, 1987-2007. Prepared for “Latino Migrant Civic and Political Participation” project, Mexico Institute, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (2008).

The Impact of Mexican Migration and Border Proximity on Local Communities Prepared for the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, Rice University (2008).

Personal Website

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