PSD Spotlight: Judy Garza

January 19, 2022

Judy Garza

The PSD January spotlight is Judy Garza, Manager of the Department of Mathematics. Judy has been with the University of Chicago for 33 years. We interviewed her about her interests and experiences below.

Where are you from?

I am from Hammond, Indiana.

What do you enjoy about being a part of the PSD community?

I enjoy getting to meet new people from all different walks of life. The PSD community is so warm and supportive, it makes working here a true pleasure. Being a part of the PSD / UChicago community has not only shaped my life, but my children’s lives. My daughter was the first in my family to obtain a college degree and I believe her exposure to UChicago played a large role in her choosing to pursue higher education.

Tell us a bit about you.

I have been with the University for almost 34 years, originally starting as a student service representative in the Department of Chemistry. During my time here, I’ve raised two amazing children. I also have two grandchildren with a third on the way. I enjoy spending time with my family.

Who inspires you?

My son and my daughter both are my inspirations. I see them work hard to reach their dreams and they are constant reminders for me to continue to work hard to reach mine.

What is the most interesting thing that you are working on right now?

The math department is in a state of flux right now, and I’m excited to do some restructuring to enable us to meet the needs of our faculty and students in these challenging times.

What does diversity and inclusion mean to you?

Diversity means having groups of people from all walks of life. Specifically, a variety of racial, gender, ethnic and sexuality backgrounds. Inclusion is when those same people feel accepted.

Who had the most influence on you growing up?

My husband, Camilo Garza (we met when I was 11 and he was the most influential person in my life)!

What three words best describe you?

Advocate, kind, and tenacious.

If they made a movie about your life, what genre would it be and who would play you?

Comedy, Meg Ryan.

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