SunAh M Laybourn, PhD

Assistant Professor of Sociology | University of Memphis

SunAh M Laybourn, PhD is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Memphis, an Affiliate Faculty Member for the Center for Workplace Diversity & Inclusion, and a former Academic Research Fellow of the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change. She is the co-lead facilitator for the National Civil Rights Museum’s Unpacking Racism for Action six-month cohort program and regularly speaks on topics of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.

SunAh received her PhD in Sociology from the University of Maryland (2018). Her research examines racialization processes, cross-racial interaction, and Asian America. She is the co-author of Diversity in Black-Greek Letter Organizations: Breaking the Line (Routledge 2018). Her work has been published in Social Problems, Sociology of Race & Ethnicity, Racial & Ethnic Studies, and Asian Pacific American Law Journal, among others.

SunAh’s next book, Out of Place: The Lives of Korean Adoptee Immigrants (New York University Press, January 2024) examines immigration, citizenship, and belonging through the case of Korean transnational transracial adoptees.

Outside of academia, SunAh serves on the Korean American Adoptee Adoptive Family Network’s Advisory Committee. In 2023, she organized Memphis’s first month-long celebration of Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage month. SunAh is the host of WYXR 91.7FM’s Let’s Grab Coffee, a weekly radio show featuring experts from across the country, who are investigating our most pressing social issues and common curiosities. SunAh enjoys a good cup of coffee, French croissants, and tending to her plants (30 and counting).

Join the Diversity Woman Community

Join a network of career-oriented women and use the member directory to see all the members in your community and find world class mentors. Access exclusive leadership development packages to help you achieve your career goals. Work With Coaches. Take Career Development Courses, and much more.