Mark Overmyer-Velázquez became Director of UConn Hartford as of August 23, 2017. A Professor of History at UConn and the founding Director of El Instituto: Institute of Latina/o, Caribbean & Latin American Studies, Overmyer-Velázquez trained at Yale University as a historian of Latin America and U.S. Latinos. He has dedicated his research and teaching to these intersecting fields. His books include, Global Latin(o) Americanos: Transoceanic Diasporas and Regional Migrations (Oxford, 2017), and Beyond la Frontera: The History of Mexico-U.S. Migration (Oxford, 2011).
The first Latinx elected official in West Hartford, in 2017 Overmyer-Velázquez concluded a six-year term as a member and Chairman of the West Hartford Board of Education. He currently serves on a number of Hartford Boards including, Connecticut Students for a Dream; Hartford Foundation for Public Giving; Hartford Public Library; Greater Hartford Arts Council; Hartford Consortium for Higher Education; MetroHartford Alliance; and iQuilt. In 2019, he received the Vision Award in Social Justice from the Charter Oak Cultural Center.