Irma Herrera: What can we do to create organizations that treat everyone with respect and dignity?

Irma (pronounced Ear-ma) Herrera is a civil rights lawyer turned playwright and solo performer, and she uses storytelling and theater to open hearts and minds. After three decades of working in pursuit of fairness and justice, she turned her attention to storytelling on stage. This work is an extension of her social justice advocacy, and she uses the skills developed as a lawyer to explore themes of othering and belonging. Her one-woman show “Why Would I Mispronounce My Own Name?” is a work of creative nonfiction that is a mashup of personal narrative, lessons in American history, and stories about respecting people’s names, even when they don’t sound and look like “real” American names.

In episode 433 of the Fraternity Foodie Podcast, we find out when Irma noticed her love of languages, why she decided to attend Notre Dame Law School, where she got the idea for her one-woman show called “Why Would I Mispronounce My Own Name?”, how the Muslim ban, the racializing of COVID-19 and the rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans, and laws targeting trans youth are all related, why she believe that her multiple identities are indivisible, and what we can do to create organizations that treat everyone with respect and dignity. Enjoy!