Ramon Del Castillo possesses a BA in Sociology and Mexican American Studies from the University of Northern Colorado, an MA in Social Science and Public Administration from the University of Colorado at Denver, and completed his doctoral studies from the Graduate School of Public Affairs at the University of Colorado at Denver. His doctoral dissertation, using the theory of innovation, looked at Curanderismo, a traditional approach to holistic healing and its institutionalization within a publicly funded mental health agency.
Castillo has worked in the fields of mental health, education and community and economic development. Currently the Chair of the Masters Program in Nonprofit Management at Regis University, he is also an adjunct faculty in the Chicana and Chicano Studies Department at Metropolitan State College of Denver.
He was the past Director of the PODER Project, one of five projects, funded by The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s “Rebuilding Communities Initiative. As a past mental health administrator, Castillo managed specialty clinics and programs that provided culturally competent services for “special populations” and is seen as an innovator in the field of mental health. He was the Coordinator of the Hispanic Education Advisory Council and a policy analyst for the Denver Public School, influencing policies that had potentially adverse effects on the Latino families that were being served. As a Director at Rocky Mountain Denver SER Head Start, he facilitated the development of a culturally competent curriculum entitled, “El Espejo,” for this organization.
Ramon is seen as a leader in the Latino community, struggling for the human and civil rights of Latinos. In 1996, he was awarded the Richard T. Castro Memorial Community Service Award for multi-cultural mental health program innovation. In 1998, he was awarded the prestigious Colorado State Division of Civil Right’s Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award.
As a past columnist for the Rocky Mountain News and a current columnist for El Semanario, Dr. Del Castillo is known for his thought provoking and insightful essays regarding the plight of persons of color and public policy concerns and issues. In 2002, he was the winner of El Semanario’s Journalist Award, for Writing and Literary Mentorship.
He has won several poetry contests including the Mestizo Award for Poetry. His publications include 4 books of poetry and numerous publications in literary magazines and books. His work was featured in the 1999 Chicano Literary Encyclopedia and part of his dissertation is included in La Gente: Hispano History and Life in Colorado. His newest book, Tales from a Michoacano appeared in September, 2002.
- The 2002 Journalist Award for Literary Mentorshop, El Semanario, September, 2002
- LeRoy R. Heflen Award, Colorado Historical Society (for work in La Gente: Hispano History and Life in Colorado) , September, 1999
- Martin Luther King Humanitarian Award. Colorado Civil Rights Division. January 1998.
- First Place Winner: Mile High Poetry Society: "Transformation." Spring, 1995. Denver
- NEWSED: "Cinco de Mayo Civil Rights Award." Santa Fe Drive Cinco de Mayo Celebration. Denver, CO, 1995.
- Raices Mestizas Literary Award: Poetry. 27 Years of Literature in Aztlan: A Chicano/Mexicano Literary Symposium. April 20, 1995: Metropolitan State College of Denver.
- Richard T. Castro Award for "Multicultural Mental Health Service Innovation." Multicultural Mental Health Coalition. Boulder, CO April 1994.
- Dr. Martin Luther King Award for Civil Rights: Training Program. Denver, CO January 14, 1994.
- Raices Mestizas Literary Award in the area of Poetry. Denver, 1993.
- NEWSED Economic Development Organization Award: Poet Laureate in Denver. 1993.
- Lt. Governor’s Award for Excellence in Substance Abuse Prevention, l988.
- Chicano Mental Health and Substance Abuse Award, 1988.
- Who's Who Among Hispanic Americans: l991-2 Gayle Research Inc.
- 1 st Place, Statewide Chicano Theme Writing Contest: l991
- 1 st & 2 nd Place: Statewide Chicano Theme Writing Contest: 1992