For more than four decades, the Trinity High School community has awarded the Trinity Peace Medal. The award recognizes a deserving individual or group for efforts that promote peacemaking, justice-building and service to others. Mr. Klaus Mittelsten, H’92, who at the time was chair of Trinity’s Foreign Language Department, initiated the award, along with then-Trinity principal Rev. Thomas Duerr, H’92. Recent recipients have included the Little Sisters of the Poor, Sister Mary Angela Shaughnessy, Dr. Sam Horton, Mr. Michael Whiting and Sister Barbara Bir.
The 2017 Trinity Peace Medal was awarded to Dr. Roy Germano ’98 during Trinity’s graduation ceremony in May 2017.
Dr. Germano is a research scholar at the New York University School of Law and part-time professor with the New York University M.A. Program in International Relations, where he teaches courses on immigration and transnationalism. He holds a Ph.D. in Government from the University of Texas at Austin, a Masters in International Relations from the University of Chicago, and a B.A. in Political Science from Indiana University.
Dr. Germano’s forthcoming book, Outsourcing Welfare, explores the political, economic, and social impact of the hundreds of billions of dollars immigrants send to their home countries each year. Through reports from his fieldwork in rural Mexico and analyses of survey data from Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East, he shows how this critical financial resource contributes to economic security and political stability in developing countries during periods of austerity and crisis.
Dr. Germano has also written, directed, and produced five documentary films. His feature-length documentary The Other Side of Immigration traces the root causes of immigration from Mexico. It won the American Library Association Notable Video Award and has screened at more than 150 film festivals, universities, and community events. Dr. Germano also wrote and directed the Vice News documentary series Immigrant America which explores the effects of US deportation policy on American families, the impact of immigration enforcement on the US agricultural industry, and the root causes of child migration from Central America.
Dr. Germano’s research has appeared or is forthcoming in a number of academic journals, including Perspectives on Politics, The N.Y.U. Law Review, Latino Studies, Migration Studies, Electoral Studies, and the William and Mary Bill of Rights Journal. His work has been funded by grants from the National Science Foundation, the Mexican Cultural Institute of New York, and the University of Texas at Austin. He has provided commentary and analysis to a variety of media outlets including NPR, The Economist, MSNBC, Vice News, WNYC, Univision, Telemundo, Fox News and El Pais.
Throughout his professional life, Dr. Germano has honored the dignity of all people, especially those whom society has overlooked. His interest in this area began while working in a restaurant in Chicago with many Mexican cooks, busboys and dishwashers. Through numerous conversations, he learned that we have more similarities than differences. He began traveling to Mexico to find out where his co-workers came from. On one trip, in 2008, he took along his video camera and began filming his conversations with return migrants, community leaders, policy-makers, farmers and relatives of people who had made the journey northward. This resulted in his first film, The Other Side of Immigration. Dr. Germano hopes that the insights expressed by the men and women who appear in the film inspire an approach to immigration, especially those coming from Central and South America, that is sophisticated, creative and most importantly, rooted in the Gospel teachings of Jesus.
Dr. Germano is a Louisville native and a graduate of Trinity High School, class of 1998. He is married with one daughter.